Eye movement is a fascinating way to gain insight into how people think. In studies, psychologist have discovered a link between eye movement and modes of thought. The direction of the eyes in conversation can indicate what brain processes are occurring.
Looking up and to the right indicates a person is constructing images. This could mean a person is being untruthful. Of course making images can also be a creative act that has nothing to do with dishonesty. It’s necessary to be aware of the context of your conversation. Looking up and to the left means one is accessing memories. In interrogations such eye movements would tend to indicate the person is being truthful.
Moving the eyes to the center and toward the left ear indicates one is recalling something they have already heard. Looking toward the right ear reflects indicated inventing new sound. Again, inventing new sound doesn’t always mean dishonesty or all music writers would be dishonest! But in the right context it could be useful information in deciding if you’re hearing the truth.
Looking low and to the right indicates a person is experiencing strong emotions. Moving the eyes low and to the left indicates a person is experiencing inner communication or talking to themselves. This one could be handy if you’re not sure you have your partners attention or not!
Eyes shifting rapidly from left to right may indicate lying and is where the term shifty eyed comes from no doubt, but it can also mean a person is experiencing emotional turmoil and feeling overwhelmed and may have nothing to do with untruthfulness. To further complicate matters people who are left handed and therefore right brain dominate are thought to have totally different eye movement.
Eye movement can also be studied to discover a person’s dominant mode of thinking and use that to build rapport. People think in three basic modes, visual, auditory and kinesthetic. When asking a person a question that requires solving a problem of some sort notice if their eyes drift upward, stay center or drift down.
People whose eyes drift upward are using a visual representational system. You may notice them using visual cue words such as seeing, brighter, dimmer or other visual words. People who look side to side are more auditory and may use word like rings true, or sound right. People who look downward and to the right are more kinesthetic and may use words such as grasp, hold, and get a handle on. Discovering a person’s dominant sensory mode and adjusting your language to their sensory mode can help you build rapport and improve communications.