Friday, May 27, 2011

Alpha Frame: eye contact

It is difficult to exaggerate the importance of eye contact when it comes to social dominance and psycho-sexual rank. A significant amount of human non-verbal communication takes place via the eyes; one can readily perceive intelligence or the lack thereof by nothing more than a one-second exchange of eye contact.

Deltas, Gammas and Omegas habitually avoid eye contact, especially with the opposite sex. Alphas, on the other hand, tend to turn it into a dominance game. Therefore, to communicate high status to the opposite sex, it is important for men to not look away when a woman happens to notice them looking at her. This doesn't mean one should leer or stare, (and by all means, do not smile), all that is necessary is to hold eye contact for about one second before deliberately blinking, then looking away. It is important to blink first, before looking away, as this sends the clear message that one is consciously deciding to break eye contact, not instinctively or reactively showing embarrassment at being "caught". The slower one blinks, the more deliberation it conveys.

The technique is extremely effective in same-sex dominance challenges too. That is the situation where I first learned to utilize it in a conscious manner. When one is being challenged in some way, either verbally or physically, it is a powerful dominance move to remain silent and expressionless, lock eyes for two or three seconds, then deliberately blink and turn away. This conveys contempt and is usually received as a message that one is not afraid of the other individual and his challenge does not even merit one's attention. An audible sniff and slight curl of the lip can serve as an exclamation point if one wishes to actively assert dominance rather than simply reject the challenge. Warning: such an action does run the slight risk of sparking an immediate verbal or physical attack.

On the other hand, the small minority of men who are naturally dominant may need to deliberately avoid eye contact on occasion in order to evade accidental dominance clashes. Usually, a simple acknowledgement nod of the head, (be it upward or downward) is sufficient to defuse any potential clash between strangers. For example, I was at a big theme park last year and there was a tall, socially dominant man running one of the rides - in his robes, he looked like an aristocratic monk straight out of the Middle Ages - who was clearly enjoying his role directing traffic and making flirtatious small talk with the many mothers passing through. What I found interesting as I observed him was that he was constantly scanning the crowd as he engaged the customers; when he saw me watching him from our position about 20 rows back, he froze for a second, then nodded in impassive acknowledgement. He also made a point of addressing me, rather than Spacebunny, when we reached the front of the line. Obviously, he was an alpha (at the theme park, at least), who mistook me for a fellow alpha, but that happens on a regular basis to sigmas.

Human beings are predators and predators always watch their prey. This is why women correctly find men who watch them without expression to be either frightening or arousing depending upon the man's psycho-sexual status. Eye contact is the Force Recon of social dominance, so its conscious management can be useful.


Heuristics said...

I have noticed that the smiling thing appears to be a difference between game writers. Some (Strauss/Mystery) say rather to put on a big smile (especially when one walks in to a room), while others (Vox) argue against smiling.

Personally I have no clue witch works best, but I have noticed that smiling combined with signs of pride (chest out) can lead to a feeling of being higher on the social order. But on the other hand smiling when in a conversation with someone can often make me feel like a bit of an idiot. So perhaps there is a way to combine the two schools here?

The Great and Powerful Oz said...

It's my nature to smile. Smiling is contagious and thereby icreases the level of happiness in the world by a small amount.

Increasing the amount of joy in the world is sometimes more important than just getting laid.

Yohami said...

yeah. I had the bad habit of breaking visual contact by looking DOWN. Took me a while to stare until the other person breaks contact (usually a second later than what I normally would had), or breaking with a blink and sideways

nodding upwards is better than downwards too

DJ | AMDG said...

There is a famed Samurai technique (I cannot remember the name) of staring down your opponent and winning a duel without fighting.

The objective was similar to what you are describing. The mythical story describing the technique was about a Tea Master without any fighting skills, defeating a Samurai in a duel to the death. The highly focused and purposeful Tea Master, even though he had no sword skills whatsoever, proved by staring, that he was in fact the better man in the duel. He might have died in a match, but the Samurai knew he likely would, too, given the focus and mental dominance of the Tea Master.

It was a powerful technique for fighting without fighting.


moose said...

As someone who was oblivious to these games until not long ago this post is most useful. More would be appreciated.

Juhana said...

Cool. A simple technique that I'm gonna try out.

indyguy77@work said...

"nodding upwards is better than downwards too"

I started doing that some time ago, it still feels like silly prick-waving.

But right about when I started, I asked a female friend of mine what she thought of the upward nod.

She replied that she found it arrogant and obnoxious.

Then I pointed out that a dude she would get moist over does it all the time. She got all abashed as though she'd been caught stealing.

I found the disconnect between her thoughts and her actual reactions revealing. Game is fascinating at times, especially when it throws things into sharp relief like that.

Anonymous said...

One reason small children are at risk of being bitten by dogs is that they do not yet realize that eye contact is the first part of Alpha dominance. They will litterally look into the dogs eyes at face level without averting their gaze which to the dog means fight!

Yohami said...


"She replied that she found it arrogant and obnoxious."

That only means you have to do it more. Take these apparently negative remarks "asshole, dick, prick, arrogant" as the compliments they are. "Bad" boys are attractive, "good" boys are not.

She will try to "fight you" and put your arrogance down, aka "testing", and she´ll be all wet too.

Vox said...

She replied that she found it arrogant and obnoxious.

What part of "never pay any attention to anything a woman tells you about what attracts her" did you fail to understand?

In general, if a woman expresses irritation at an aspect of male behavior, it is because she finds herself responding sexually to it. Especially if the irritation is unjustified or otherwise inexplicable.

In general, if a woman tells others that she "hates" you, this means she will have sex with you if you press her.

Tigger4Christ said...

That thing about looking away? That is very dangerous. I have a friend who is ancient and decrepit now. He was 6'4 and 300 pounds in his youth. Solid muscle from working construction as a carpenter.

He had an argument with his landlord. Legally, his landlord was the alpha. He owned the place, had every right in the dispute. The landlord not only broke eye contact, but turned his back.

The landlord found himself bodily picked up and hurled more than five feet away. He was hospitalized.

Part of what keeps us Gammas down is knowing that we need to have backup. Either be physically strong, or have strong enough friendships that a posse would come down and get retribution.

So, yes. Increase your strength. Gamma traits may be because of actual weakness. They are certainly seen as weakness. And weakness in a man isn't attractive.

indyguy77@work said...

Vox: What part of "never pay any attention to anything a woman tells you about what attracts her" did you fail to understand?

Please, I'm not that dim.

That was my exact point at the time: that she was so un-self-aware. I laughed in her face because this dude affected her (and just about all women around) in such a manner, yet she was clueless about how he operated.

And actually, she was an ex of mine that I landed easy using simple Game.

Looking back, I probably could have scored on the first date had I been more aggressive and been more aware.

Sam Bryan said...

Thanks for posting this. I've wondered before about how to consciously handle making eye contact with people. One of the first changes I made was to start looking to the side instead of down when breaking eye contact. The question of how long to hold eye contact with those who don't look away first (most people will immediately avert their eyes) is one I've pondered.

I started doing the upward nod a few months ago. At first, it felt very awkward and unnatural. In some circumstances, especially when doing it to male acquaintances and even authority figures, it felt borderline disrespectful. But after keeping it up, it has started to feel much more natural and even more friendly than the downward nod.

Vox said...

That thing about looking away? That is very dangerous.

That's why it is such a powerful dominance move. It's also why I included the warning. Don't utilize it unless you are fully prepared to deal with the consequences.

Desert Cat said...

"nodding upwards is better than downwards too"

I usually catch myself afterwards, having nodded down instead of up. Still working on integrating this gesture.

But this is a great example of one of those things that despite feeling uncomfortable and, dare I say "fake" at first, becomes perfectly natural as it is consistently incorporated into the way you interact with the world.

"I started doing the upward nod a few months ago. At first, it felt very awkward and unnatural. In some circumstances, especially when doing it to male acquaintances and even authority figures, it felt borderline disrespectful. But after keeping it up, it has started to feel much more natural and even more friendly than the downward nod."


If I may interject a little theorizing here, this may be something like smiling or laughter. Recall that some studies show that smiling or laughing when you don't *feel* like smiling or laughing will actually change your feelings.

In like manner the gesture itself, nodding up instead of down, has a powerful effect on the firmware that informs your psyche regarding your social status. Same with the eye contact habits.

You laugh when you feel like raging, and you become more happy and less wrathful. You nod up and hold eye contact when you feel like breaking contact and looking at your shoes and you become more confident and dominant. With time and consistent application, the change becomes permanent.

Yohami said...

"You laugh when you feel like raging, and you become more happy and less wrathful."

Yeah. You have to learn to redirect your "natural", which are just learned, tendencies, into new ones. Change the beta or whatever frame you are into alpha and be as if, and try to feel as if and experience your mind change.

It wont feel natural, it wont be in your comfort zone, it wont be "you", it wont be familiar, it will be scary, it will be good.

Yet dont make it "fake" for god´s sake.


Yohami said...

"Recall that some studies show that smiling or laughing when you don't *feel* like smiling or laughing will actually change your feelings."

Yes. Just like yoga or any actual exercise. If you go to the gym or play tennis or exercise or run, even if you didnt feel "like it", the body will segregate the hormones and chemicals and stuff and will affect your mind. If you keep it, you will eventually feel like it.

The body affects the mind and viceversa.

And if you are down, if you do high energy stuff the stuff you do energizes you. Not acting down nor depressed helps not being down nor depressed.

However if life is fucked up, and you smile, that wont solve the fucked up issues.

Best thing you can do is to go fix whatever has to be fixed and do whatever it takes to actually have a life that makes you smile, make you proud, a life that feedbacks you are "the shit!", so you dont have to sustain your state with your mind, and you can focus your mind on more productive issues.

NateM said...

I think the nodding upward/downward difference is largely cultural, at least in the US it seems that Black men nod upward, while White Men largely nod downward, suppose it conveys the same sense of acknowledgement.

But Very true that how you use eye contact conveys a definite message. I am not what you'd consider socially dominant but I have been told by others that occasionally the way I look or acknowledge someone can convey a message of contempt or lack of respect. (of course I didn't realize this, not being the most savvy). That lead to a very interesting situation, where I was informed by a friend that a man who is ~300 lbs and a former collegiate Div I football player felt I was challenging him. I don't know if I should be proud or feel like I should be more observant.

DaveD said...

Two things I've learned about eye contact: make her look away first and have "sticky eyes".

If you make eye contact with a woman, hold it until she looks away first. When she restarts it, she will hold it just a little longer than she did last time. Keep the cycle going and you will be able to literally watch her attitude towards you change. It's almost like breaking a horse.

If you do get caught looking and you have the urge to look away, do it your eyes are stuck. Imagine pulling sticky gum off a table. I know it sounds weird but it sends a different signal than looking away quickly like you're ashamed.

I highly recommend the book "Undercover Sex Signals" by Leil Lowndes.


Anonymous said...

This is good guidance, I've been using this sort of thing lately myself, and it has been interesting. I am a definite Delta, and I do find that I avert my eyes from folks because I don't want to confront people or show more interest in them than I actually have. I just haven't been into dominance games. However, as I have been making direct eye contact with people in recent months, I have noticed that they do respond in the way Vox describes.

I have to admit that direct eye contact with women helps a lot, because the tendency to look away can sometimes lead my eyes to their chests, and that itself is probably taken as creepy or perverted. So, if you look them in the eyes, you don't risk offending them, and might end up with them reacting to you as if you were more alpha.

- Astrosmith

Yohami said...

"and might end up with them reacting to you as if you were more alpha."

When you look them in the eyes, you are indeed more alpha.

Tigger4Christ said...

That explains why look at a womans breasts is "creepy"; the man is DLVing by lowering his eyes, not maintaining eye contact, and not moving them sideways when he breaks it.

What about when you break eye contact moving your eyes UPward? That is called rolling your eyes... very direct challenge.

Vox, any advice for using your eyes in jail? In jail, they sniff out the betas quickly and harass them. But there are consequences for picking fights, and being the agressor can be deadly. You are locked up, and medical attention isn't the easiest to get. How does this advice work for not being beta-of-the-day, but not triggering fights either?

ridip said...

Up or down is definitely cultural. Growing up in the hood I always nod up to black men and alphas. Being white I usually get a doubletake, a smile and a little friendlier reception from black guys after doing this. You can even use it to say hey or seeya from across the room. Growing up I heard more than one black momma tell her son to lower his head to no one. Just watch it because the wrong tempo or rhythm of motion can be a challenge instead of recognition or acknowledgement. Just picture raising you head and tensing or eyes or flaring your nostrils. You do that you better be prepared for a fight.

Granted this may have changed since I was younger.

Markku said...

Up or down is definitely cultural.

I think it's mostly about what position your head is in before you see the person you are greeting. If it is already at a slightly upward angle (as is typical of an alpha), nodding down would be unnatural since your head would have to move so far down. Similarly, if you are already looking a bit downward, then further down is the most natural direction and upward nod would just look silly.

In other words, you have to already be or simulate an alpha before you even notice the person.

Adam said...

I didnt read the article letter-for-letter but the FISRST eye-contact you make with your woman YOU MUST HOLD until SHE LOOKS AWAY FIRST!

David Deangelo taught this and its basic caveman-shit.

When people talk to me I tend to look away or I will appear nervous which I suppose after reading this is because I want to remain dominant (lol, feels so wierd to write).

But could it be because Im nervous o wierd? Ive done alot of inner-game homework and feel I should be the man but it feels like Im avoiding something and try to come up with ways to push it aside... Dont know what it is. I saw an American reality show (im in sweden) and when someone talks people stare at them, is it because they really want to know what they have to say? I cant look at people when they talk to me unless I find the riveting, I GUESS, I havent thought about it much. Oh well.

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