If you ask me, there are two types of people in the world: Those who like hugs and those who don’t.
I don’t know about you, but I, myself, belong to the former category and I couldn’t imagine my life without hugs!
Regardless if I feel sad, happy, anxious, or excited, I always look for one thing and that is sharing my feelings with others.
When I hug someone (or when they hug me), it’s like the world stops for a moment and you can feel the other person’s breathing, their warmth, and their emotions.
You can tell more from a hug than you ever could from words.
In a way, when hugging someone, you become one with them for a few seconds, and you communicate with your feelings instead of with words.
Hugging is a universally comforting act and it has the power to make everyone feel good (or at least those who like hugging).
There are different types of hugs and each one of them conveys a different meaning.
From the back hug to the catcher hug, different types of hugs help us express a wide range of emotions from deep feelings of love to excitement.
The most impressive thing about hugging is that it doesn’t only make you feel good for a few seconds, but its benefits go beyond that!
Different types of hugs convey different meanings
Apart from making us happier and healthier (we’ll talk about this later on), different types of hugs help us express different emotions.
For example, the back hug symbolizes deep feelings for someone, protection, and unconditional love.
This type of hug is typically practiced among partners where usually the man is the one who gives his significant other a back hug.
There is also the pickpocket hug, which is a naughty hug and not suitable for anyone.
If you’re a woman reading this, know that different ways in which guys hug can tell you a lot about their feelings!
Guys are not that good at expressing their feelings with words, so they prefer using different types of hugs to show you their affection.
My favorite hug from a guy is ‘the hug while twirling you around’. Whenever a guy hugs me like this, I can’t help myself but feel very special and loved.
I feel like I’m his whole universe, and twirling me around is his way of expressing affection and gratitude for being a part of my life.
Indeed, different types of hugs convey different meanings, so which one is your favorite? You don’t have to tell me, but tell your special one!
According to scientists, hugging makes us healthier and happier
If someone told me a few years ago that hugs are so powerful that they can protect us from illness, I would refuse to believe them.
I’ve always been skeptical by nature, and that’s why I need to explore things on my own in order to find the real truth about it.
To my amazement, I found so many scientists and studies claiming that hugs are super beneficial for our health and overall happiness.
The benefits of hugging are truly amazing, and that’s why every single one of us should strive to get (and give) more hugs:
- Hugging helps lower stress levels
If you look closely around yourself, you’ll notice that stress levels have never been higher than they are today.
Everyone seems to be in a rush, deadlines have become the new plague, and we’re all dreaming about drinking cocktails on a beach while listening to the waves crashing.
Well, if you have the opportunity to go to the beach right now, I advise you to do so, but if you don’t, a simple hug can be almost as beneficial as listening to the waves and drinking cocktails while soothing music plays in the background.
Hugging helps lower stress levels because by hugging someone, we’re showing them support.
We are basically telling them that they are not alone, and no matter what is bothering them at the moment, it will pass.
Did you know that even the person who is giving the hug can experience the same benefits of reduced stress levels just as the person who is getting the hug? Yup, hug is that powerful.
- It boosts your heart health
If you’re one of those people who have problems with blood pressure and other heart-related medical issues, then you should definitely hug more than you’re doing now (if you’re doing it at all). Here’s why.
The University of North Carolina conducted a study where they examined 59 women who had been living with a spouse or monogamous partner for at least six months, and they revealed some fascinating results.
The women were talking about their partners and answering different questions regarding frequency of physical contact with their partners, like hugging, holding hands, and similar.
Some of these women ended each talking session with being hugged by their partners and the hug lasted for 20 seconds.
The women who were hugged from their partners after the sessions had lower heart rates and blood pressure during testing.
The researchers think that this is connected with a boost in oxytocin.
In case you’re not familiar with it, oxytocin is known as one of the happy chemicals in our brain that is responsible for boosting our mood and simply making us feel happy.
- It protects you against illness
Stress is one of the main reasons why we get sick. When we’re feeling stressed out, our body becomes weaker, meaning that our immune systems’ ability to fight off antigens becomes significantly reduced.
That is why we become more susceptible to infections and different types of illnesses.
Needless to say that uncontrolled stress can lead to high blood pressure, obesity, heart disease, and so on.
Being hugged reduces stress levels and, as a result, protects you against illnesses.
There are many other ways in which you can reduce stress (like meditating or going for a walk), but hugging is definitely one of the simplest ones.
- It helps you feel connected
Whenever you say to yourself, I need a hug, it actually means that you’re seeking connection with someone.
You want to be understood, comforted, and taken care of. Indeed, hugging has the power to help you feel connected with others, which reduces feelings of loneliness.
Hugs not only help you connect with others, but they also reduce stress levels (as mentioned above) as well as depression and anxiety levels.
As a person who is suffering from anxiety, I can confirm that hugs have helped more than anything else.
Whenever someone hugs me, I feel like half of my anxious feelings and thoughts simply disappear into thin air.
- Hugs release tension in the body
Hugging relaxes our muscles, releases happy chemicals like endorphins and serotonin, and increases circulation in our body. All of this helps release tension and alleviate pain.
It’s funny, but if you have back pain and you’re too lazy to exercise or go for a walk, you can ask your partner, friend, or a family member to hug you.
Also, hugs are a great alternative to painkillers. Natural remedies are always better than artificial ones (especially if you’re a fan of holistic lifestyle like myself).
- They boost your mood
Hugs are great mood boosters. They increase levels of dopamine, serotonin, and other happy chemicals in our brain, which boosts our mood and relieves symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression.
There are plenty of different mood boosters like exercising, meditation, or taking a long bath, and the best bet is to implement them all into your daily routine (including hugs).
You should stay away from artificial mood boosters like alcohol and similar because they provide temporary relief, but can be harmful in the long run.
- Hugging helps reduce fears
Do you have problems with self-esteem? Do you ever feel so lonely to the extent of becoming scared of your own existence? Do you have problems with overthinking too much?
I’m pretty sure that the majority of us have experienced some or all of the above things at one point in our lives. When this happens to you, resort to the power of hugging.
Hugs help reduce your fears by subtly letting you know that you’re not alone.
Even hugging a teddy bear can be almost equally as beneficial as hugging a person, so you should try it if you haven’t already.
I have a teddy bear specifically for those purposes, so whenever I feel lonely or have trouble falling asleep, I resort to the power of teddy bear hugs.
The more you hug, the healthier and happier you will be!
If you’re one of those people who prefer handshaking instead of hugging, then now is high time to reconsider your preferences. It’s evident that the more you hug, the happier and healthier you will be.
Give hugs selflessly and receive them with gratitude.
One simple hug has the power to brighten your day, decrease your stress levels, and make you feel less lonely. One simple hug can make the world a better place.
“A hug is an amazing thing. It’s just the perfect way to show the love we’re feeling but can’t find the words to say.” – Johnny Ray Rider