Imagine you are looking out into the world and seeing kind eyes looking back at you. Perhaps you remember a time you showed up unexpected at a friend’s door, and they opened the door truly delighted to see YOU!

What happens in and around your eyes, your body, your emotional state? This guy, the Dalai Lama, has been through tons of trauma! But he’s definitely hooked up to a social engagement. You can see the contact in his face and the kindness in his eyes.

The Dalai Lama: Photo courtesy TheIndianRepublic.com

The Dalai Lama: Photo courtesy TheIndianRepublic.com

You might think about the people you’ve talked about that reminded you of secure attachment in our matrix exercise for this next exercise. Take a moment to close your eyes. We’ll just do a little guided mindfulness exercise. Keep tracking what happens in your body, and specifically your face and your actual eyeball.

I want you to imagine and if it helps to look at the Dalai Lama, you can open your eyes and use that imagine looking out into the world as a baby or a young child, and seeing someone (could be an animal, too) looking back at you with loving, kind, caring eyes.

Let’s take a moment to see if any person, or pet, or situation comes up. Sometimes it’s nature, but see if you can bring in actual eye contact from some source.

Notice what happens in your body, your emotional sense, your thoughts, and let your eyes move out to their eyes. Let yourself register their kindness, their caring, their love.

Take a moment to see if you can see that, take it in, and bring it back into your body, back into your eye, while you are maintaining an awareness of how it’s affecting you. It might be one person, it might be more animals and people anything that helps you connect to that loving kindness and passionate, caring presence that you can see in the eyes.

Another example might be stopping by a friend’s house when they don’t know you’re coming. You ring the doorbell and they answer the door, and they open the door and say, “Oh my gosh, it’s you! How wonderful to see you!” And you feel, as they are saying that, that you surprised them, but you feel authenticity in the fact that they are really glad you are there; they are really happy and delighted that it’s you at the door. They look at you with that “you are special to me” gleam beam truly, deeply welcomed.

Just notice. This might bring up a wound, or it might bring up pleasure. There are all sorts of possibilities, and there’s no incorrect response. We are just looking for awareness of what was it like for you in eye gaze. What do you expect in eye gaze? What happens when you see positive caring, nurturing, “you are special to me,” “I love you,” being communicated through the eyes?

Eye Gaze Exercise

Let’s just take a moment to feel what’s arising. Whatever is there is fine. You can track your emotions or thoughts, the sensations, images, the body’s reaction, the nervous system. And when you find an okay place to land, give yourself a moment to transition into opening your eyes when you are ready!

This blog was written from Module 2.2: Avoidant and Needs Corrective Strategies: “Kind Eyes” Exercise.