When was the last time you exchanged a hug with someone? Do you remember the feeling of immense love and contentment you feel when you’re hugged? Does it make you feel special and wanted?We need 4 hugs a day for survival, 8 hugs a day for maintenance & 12 hugs a day for growth. - Virginia Satir, Family Therapist.
There is a difference between ‘social hugging’; where you paste an artificial smile on your face and exchange some quick hugs and pecks on the cheek, and therapeutic hugging. Therapeutic hugging is meant to be healing. Reaching out and touching someone and holding them tight is simply a natural way of saying you care. When you’re embraced, you feel all your worries melt away and you want live the moment and take it all in. The warmth radiating from the embrace engulfing you is enough to reinforce the positive energy around you and lift you up.
From the time a foetus is in its mother’s womb he is exposed to the healing powers of ‘touch’. Our skin being a ‘sensory’ organ, responds to tender loving care. The amniotic fluid forms a secure abode for the child when he is growing inside the womb and provides constant stimulation to every inch of its tiny body, forming the origin of the yearning for touch for the rest of our lives. As a newborn, a baby recognises its parents initially by touch.
As our children grow up, we tend to start taking them for granted and expect them to just ‘know’ that we care. But what we don’t realise is that even as adults we often crave for some physical touch and expression of love. So kids aren’t any different, and at an age where they are still learning right from wrong and discovering new things everyday they need the reassurance and security of unconditional love. It can also boost their self esteem.
A hug is a great gift – it’s inexpensive, one size fits all, and it's easy to exchange. Sometimes it's better to put love into hugs than to put it into words. So take this as a reminder and try to be more generous with your hugs!