A hug is just fantastic. It cheers you up, it makes you feel loved and it’s a completely ‘non-threatening’, pure and beautiful way that we can make a physical connection with another person. Some experts say that human beings need to be hugged every single day, so wherever you are today, give someone a hug and spread some happiness! Here are ten good reasons why we should all be hugging each other more:
1. A hug is like a brief spell of meditation
A hug allows us to escape, just for a while, from all the stresses and strains of the day and focus on the here and now. It’s just like a short period of meditation and it gives you a moment to concentrate on your heart and on your feelings.
2. Hugging boosts our self esteem
Another one of great benefits of hugging is that it boosts your self esteem. Physical contact with another human being shows you that you are loved and cared for. Right from childhood, a hug makes things better and it helps us to bond with other people.
3. Hugs balance out the nervous system
Hugs create a physical response in your body too. Hugging changes your galvanic skin response, which suggests that a hug brings your nervous system into a more balanced state.
4. Hugging really does make things better
Those hugs that your mum gave you, when you had grazed your knee, really did make the pain go away. When you hug, your body releases oxytocin, which decreases your pain levels.
5. Cuddling can boost your immune system
There’s a lot to be said for this oxytocin stuff that is released when you hug. It also increases the hormones in your body that help you to fight infection and disease, so another one of good benefits of hugging is that a hug will give your immune system a boost.
6. A hug can reduce social anxiety
A hug will give you more confidence and help you feel more at home in an awkward situation. If you go into a room and you know only one person there, if that person gives you a hug, it will make you feel more welcome into the whole group.
7. A cuddle can reduce stress
Another one of amazing benefits of hugging is that it can reduce your stress levels. When you get home, after a bad day, then a cuddle can really take away some of the stress. That’s our old friend oxytocin again. It’s a feel good hormone that will pick up your mood and make you feel safe and cosy, now that you are back at home.
8. Hugging can be good for the heart
A hug is not only heartwarming, it is heart calming as well. A University study showed that people who hugged their partners regularly, had a more steady and calm heartbeat.
9. Cuddling helps us to bond with other people
It will come as no surprise that cuddling brings you closer to someone, but the reason for it is that the oxytocin released by a cuddle is designed to bring a mother closer to her baby. This works more effectively on women, which is why girls like to cuddle each other more, than men do.
10. You can cuddle alone!
It’s not just physical contact with other human beings that causes oxytocin to be released; it will be released, if you cuddle a pet. You can also create the same effect by rubbing your skin and this is why rubbing your elbow, when you’ve banged it against something, will help to make the pain go away.
Do you like cuddles? What other benefits of hugging do you want to add to our list?
Stay happy and hug your loved ones often!