Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Benefit of Hugs

Yes You Can by Jean Walters
The Benefit of Hugs

Perhaps you were not raised in an affectionate family and hugging may seem foreign. If so, it is time to reconsider the value of a hug. There is a story that makes this point perfectly.
It is about a set of premature twins who were parted after birth and placed in separate incubators. One twin was not doing well and wasn’t expected to live. Fortunately, a nurse in the pre-me nursery decided to break the hospital rules and reunited the two babies by placing them together in one incubator. Once they were together the healthier baby threw her arm around her sister. It seemed to be a heartwarming embrace. The result was the smaller, weaker twin’s heart rate got stronger and stabilized and her temperature rose to normal. These dramatic changes illustrated the power of a hug.
We’ve often heard, and possibly suspected, that babies need to be cuddled in order to survive. What we may not have considered is that all people require warmth, nurturing and compassion. All these qualities transfer through a hug.
To prove these results for yourself I suggest an experiment. Start your research by giving hugs. Let’s say you set an arbitrary limit of five hugs a day. Everyday give away at least five genuine, heartfelt hugs. If things go well, and you find yourself enjoying your research, you might want to raise the limit. Notice, for example, if your health and/or mood improves. Notice also if the recipient’s expression changes when they are hugged. If results warrant, you might incorporate hugging as a daily ritual or new behavior in your life. Hugging could be viewed as a proactive method to improve health and well-being.!! By Jove, this experiment could change your life.
Here is what Anonymous has to say about hugging. “Hugging is good medicine. It transfers energy and give the person hugged an emotional boost. You need four hugs a day for survival, eight for maintenance, and twelve for growth.
A hug makes you feel good. As the skin is our largest organ, it requires a great deal of care. A hug covers lots of skin and gives the message that you care. The nicest thing about a hug is that you usually can’t give one without getting one.”
Jean Walters is a St. Louis based Personal Growth Consultant and Coach specializing in individual empowerment. You can reach her at 314 991 8439 or

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