Touch is a basic need of every human being. From the moment we are born till the day we die our need for physical touch from other living beings stays with us.
Going without physical affection – also called touch deprivation or skin hunger – especially for a long duration can have a pretty big impact on one’s emotional well-being. There are days when one desperately needs a real tight hug after fighting their adamant inner demons. There are also days when an assurance of having done your best would do wonders after nearly being strangled by the daily hassles of life. During these testing times, human touch does have a great impact as it promotes the proper working of the immune system.
Studies have shown that a hug or human touch of any sort can help reduce blood pressure and heart rate. Hugs are also known to tackle loneliness. A gentle touch from even a stranger can help to deal with social exclusion.These days we can see a huge decline in human touch. Airports and railways used to be the prime spots where hugs were so common. But today you can hardly find them. Even at homes, being on phones and PCs family members have been physically distanced from each other. In the long run, these eventually escalate to loneliness and depression.
So, the connection between physical touch and emotional wellness is pretty much evident. The only solution to this is to have more physical contact, which is obvious. But what if people around you are insensitive to your needs even after repeatedly raising them ? Clearly you cannot rely on others to make you feel stronger or to complete you. Now here comes the good news. Hug Yourself.
Yes, you just read that right. If you really need a tight hug why don’t give yourself one right away? It might sound silly but yes, it is a real thing.Here’s how you can hug yourself – Wrap your arms across your body (anywhere – below your chest or on either shoulders.) according to your comfort level.
Then, give yourself the right squeeze just the way you want it ( Maybe strong and intense or softer and smoother). Hold it for as long as you want. You could also give it a rocking back and forth or even go for a gentle massage on your shoulders and forearms (For those who’re not keen on self hugs!).Self-hugging or havening is a sure shot way of showering love on oneself and has huge benefits to its credit too.
Self love and care raises your self esteem and in the process you are made stronger. If you have had a long day or feeling unreasonably grim, then your own touch can help you improve your mood. Self compassion can bring down your cortisol levels ( the stress hormones) and promote emotional well being. All these ultimately help you accept yourself and not stretch yourself too thin when you face hardships.
And with this acceptance comes a change in your general outlook towards life.So next time you feel touch-starved and don’t have anyone around or none to acknowledge your needs realize it’s not the end of the world. Give yourself a nice and tight squeeze to boost your spirits !
Meanwhile, here’s sending virtual hugs to anyone who needs them at the moment !
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Dear readers, I am Pooja Warrier, at least thats what my birth certificate says ! Since I failed miserably in finding a magical gemstone, I am an HR Generalist who works to earn a dime . As a creative writer, I have published a couple of articles on The ArmChair Journal and also coauthored some anthologies.
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