Published: 10/18/2014 - Updated: 01/07/2018
Author: MSc. Miriam Reyes
Ten hugs a day will fill your life with happiness. One hug, given wholeheartedly, sincerely, and with great care, is capable of producing and activating endorphins. Endorphins are the hormones for happiness and pleasure. When this hormonal movement takes place in the brain and is spread throughout the body, all sorts of functions are activated, producing the following changes:
- Strengthens the immune system, making it more resistant to viruses, bacteria, and contagions.
- Naturally produced endorphins created by hugs help increase enthusiasm, happiness, and eliminate both physical and emotional pain.
- The sense of pleasure helps boost confidence and self-esteem.
- Produces a feeling of security.
- Can reduce fear, worry, and insecurity in babies and children.
- Gives confidence to children, helping them be more analytical.
- Transmits a feeling of connectedness and understanding.
- Helps promote the desire to live.
- Calms and satisfies.
Hugs are not only a display of affection; their loving and most definitely medicinal powers surpass a simple hello or comfort. Hugs are one of the first medicines to exist, and is one of the first actions that a mother shares with her child. Hugs symbolize protection, tenderness, and confidence.
Depression, sadness, anxiety, etc., and hugs
You should give or receive a hug if:
- You don’t feel very enthused.
- You are ill.
- You have body aches.
- You tend to get depressed or feel unmotivated.
- You feel insecure, alone, or misunderstood.
But you don’t have to have just these “symptoms” to give a hug, nor do you have to wait for it to happen to ask for one, or to reach out to someone. Hug therapy has the same power as music that you like, or laughter, or dancing happily.
Is it hard for you to hug?
People that didn’t grow up in an affective environment full of hugs generally have problems later on getting close to people physically. Hugs undoubtedly generate a closeness, not only physically, but emotionally as well. This creates a special intimacy that can cause anxiety in some people. You must, however, break down the physical barrier if you truly want to understand the heart, and to allow it to fill with love for another human being.
Hugs can sometimes be unenjoyable if you’re not used to giving them. That’s why you should first practice; maybe try by giving a rather short hug, perhaps reach out for someone when you go to say hi, or get close to your children or parents more often and offer a hug under any circumstance. Little by little you should make hugs more daily in your life. Get you heart used to being open and flowing through your arms, and let your affection flow into another’s body. With practice, you will be able to to enjoy this medicinal and pleasurable action.
You don’t have anyone to hug?
If you need a hug and nobody is close by, search for a tree that’s close to where you are, and give it a hug. If you have never experienced this, you should definitely not pass it up.
Hugging children is definitely one of the best ways of transmitting security, and to help them build a more confident and dignified personality. Children that are frequently hugged are more confident and secure in themselves.
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Children that haven’t been hugged very much generally feel more alone and distrusting. They are more insecure and feel less valued. If you have children and you do not hug them very often, it might be time for you to practice hugging. The smaller your children are, the easier it will be to get them used to giving and receiving hugs. Hugging children helps them to:
- Establish self-esteem and self-worth.
- Create a secure and more creative personality.
- Grow to be more healthy and intelligent.
It’s also good to teach them to hug their siblings, their friends, cousins, etc. This will increase their emotional bonds and will help them feel closer to these people.
With all these benefits, it’s never a bad time to start hugging. Start by reaching out to others; this just might be the first step for learning to reach out for truly amazing things in life.
Revised by: Dra. Loredana Lunadei on 01/07/2018
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