It is vital to health and happiness to get your Daily Recommended Requirement (RDR). Without enough you will grow old and bitter while missing out on all of the wonderful relationships life presents to you. What are we talking about? HUGS, of course.
In his book titled “Vantagepoints on Learning and Life”, Kevin Eikenberry writes an essay called “Hugging for Health”. Kevin clearly understands the power of a hug, so much so that he has put together a very helpful step-by-step outline of how to get the most out of hug. In his essay he writes:
“Hugging is a way of connecting with others, of showing your genuine affection and appreciation, of valuing others, and of giving. All of these are positive, healthy, life enhancing purposes. While hugging is natural and we all know how to do it, I have put together some guidelines to help make you a better hugger.
- Begin the hug with great eye contact. This communicates to the receiver the spirit in which the hug is being given.
- Be present during the hug. Even if the hug is only for three seconds, devote your total energy and focus on the person you are hugging. Feel how good it feels to both give and receive.
- When you finish the hug and are pulling away, make great eye contact again. This further blesses the receiver, and communicates a positive feeling to them.
- A hug is not an opportunity to burp the other person! Be gentle. This goes especially for the guys – a hug isn’t the start of a wrestling match either.
- Avoid the one-hip hug or the tee-pee hug. If you are going to hug, do it right! (And this isn’t an excuse, to make the hug overtly sexual either – to the sexual harassment point above – unless, well, that’s another article!)
- If you are much taller than the other person, bend your knees. Make the hug comfortable and a blessing.
- If you are hugging children, get on your knees and be at their eye level. If they are small enough, pick them up to hug them.
All of these guidelines are about making the hug a completely positive, giving experience. As in many other things in our lives, when we think about others, we can make better decisions. The same is true for hugs – hug with the huggee in mind!”
I have not met Kevin Eikenberry, but I am certain that he is one cool cat. Kevin, send me an email or FB me when you read this. The point of “being present” when hugging deserves to be echoed. This is true in hugging and in your life. Be present in all that you do, especially when communicating with another person. Hugs are an ultimate form of communication between two people. When you are present during a hug you are transferring some of your energy and love to that person and you are also receiving some of that person’s energy and love back.
Think about how often you give and receive hugs. Do you get your RDR (Recommended Daily Requirement) of hugs each day? If not, why not? Ask yourself, “Whose day I can I brighten by giving them a hug today?” Then make sure you give you three additional hugs a day.