The eyes are the window to the soul — especially the left one, according to a neuroscientist.
Dr. Tara Swart, senior lecturer at Massachusetts Institute at Technology (MIT), said looking in your date’s left eye can strengthen an emotional connection.
Swart used a mother holding her baby as an example of how emotional bonds are first formed through the eyes.
“Most people are right-handed so they’ll be holding their baby in their left arm, so they can use their dominant hand to do stuff,” she told Steven Bartlet, the host of The Diary of a CEO podcast.
“That means when you gaze at your baby, your right eye is looking at their left and then that interaction from the optic nerve is going around the brain,” the best-selling author of “The Source: The Secrets of the Universe, the Science of the Brain” continued.
She then went on to explain how staring in a person’s left eye triggers the part of the brain responsible for emotion.
“It’s impacting the amygdala, where emotions come from. It’s creating this emotional resonance loop that’s part of how the mother and baby bond,” she explained.
She went on to say the “right eye to left eye contact is the most bonding eye contact you can have with someone.”
She said it’s true some mothers are left-handed but “statistically” speaking looking at the left eye is mostly a win.
“Now you could say, oh, but my mom was left-handed or you could be left-handed,” she said.
“But, if I’m taking a chance on trying to build that bond with someone, that’s the statistically most likely one to create good resonance between you.”
Data backs up her argument. According to the National Library of Medicine, around 85-90 percent of people are right-handed.
Podcast host Bartlett said his listeners should take note of the helpful trick whether they’re on a date or trying to make professional connections.
“So to everybody listening to this right now, whether they’re in work, they’re in sales, they’re looking for a partner, it’s a nice little trick to look into someone’s left eye,” he said.
He jokingly asked Swart if she looked in his left eye during the interview to which she replied: “’I waited till we sat down. I gave you a hug, you gave me a hug. We’ve laughed about a few things before we’ve come on air.”
She said that eye contact as well as some physical intimacy help create the “love hormone” oxytocin.
“Those are the sorts of things that create higher levels of the bonding hormone oxytocin, so you’re more likely to lower your guard, trust the person, take a healthy risk,” she said.
“Appropriate physical interaction” can increase oxytocin and strengthen bonds.
“Depending on the appropriateness of it, a minimum handshake, maybe a hug, maybe a kiss on the cheek, depending on what situation you’re in,” Swart said.
“The more of that physical touch that you can get the better,” she added.
Oxytocin, a hormone that’s produced in the hypothalamus and released into the blood via the pituitary gland, can decrease stress and anxiety levels, according to Harvard Medical School.
Swart isn’t the only one promoting eye-gazing to increase connection.
Gazing in the left eye is a practice used in Tantra, a centuries-old yogic tradition from India that became popular in the late 1900s in America and Europe, according to Healthline.
In 2019, Jessica Griffin, a psychologist and relationship expert for Lifetime, told The Post that eye-gazing is a great scientifically-backed Valentine’s Day activity for couples who want to strengthen their connection.