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6 Surprising Reasons You Need to Be Touched: Hug Somebody Today!

6 Surprising Reasons You Need to Be Touched: Hug Somebody Today!

Confession: I have been accused of being needy and clingy by past girlfriends because my needs for physical contact are higher than those of the average male. Nothing makes me happier than having a person I love hold my hand, play with my hair, or lay a head on my shoulder. I require a lot of personal touch to function happily in a relationship, and I’m okay with admitting that. The health benefits of touching are far and wide, so I’d like to convince you to increase the cuddle time with the loved ones in your life. I invite you to consider the top six reasons you need to be touched.

Happier, more fulfilling relationships

Oxycontin is a feel-good hormone that increases your overall happiness. Your body releases oxytocin when you cuddle with a close one, hold your partner tight, or get frisky in bed. Cuddling also releases endorphins, neurotransmitters that fire in your brain and make you feel terrific. If you’ve ever done a challenging workout that made you feel like energetic and accomplished, or ate a piece of dark chocolate that gave you a feeling of bliss, you should be familiar with the happy feeling endorphins produce in your body.

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Feel sexy and improve intimacy

Have you ever noticed that a little bit of cuddling with your partner sometimes leads to some more risque activities that are a whole lot of fun? Believe it or not, there is a scientific reason cuddling leads to better intimacy between loved ones! Physical contact with a person you love causes your body to release dopamine, a hormone that increases your sexual desire.

Strengthen your bond with the people you love

When your body’s needs for touch aren’t fulfilled, the bond you feel with your loved ones could suffer. Remember the hormone oxytocin that I mentioned above? This hormone plays a significant role in developing a bond between a mother and her children. Make sure you hug your children, kiss your partner, and give your pets a belly-rub to strengthen the bond with the important people in your life.

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Boost your health and immunity from sickness

According to a 2004 study from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, physical contact with partners can lead to reduced heart rates. Increase your hug ratio and you can also look forward to reduced blood pressure, decreased cortisol (a stress hormone tied to weight gain), improved healing, reduced cravings, and boosted immunity.

Relieve stress and anxiety

Research shows that couples who only kiss during sex are a staggering eight times more likely to experience stress and depression than those who pucker-up on a regular basis. Kissing releases your body’s feel-good endorphins just like cuddling, so make sure you give your love a kiss before you run out the door to work: it just might make their day!

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Your body craves touch like it craves water

Touch was the first of your body’s five senses to develop. This sense has been a part of you since 6-9 weeks after conception, and was the most developed sense you had as a newborn baby. Research suggests that human beings are born with a need for physical contact, so to deny yourself touch is to deny yourself of a necessity for your emotional development and well-being. This isn’t to say you have to skip out of work so you can snuggle up in bed (although I’m not going to lie, I believe this sounds wonderful!), but twenty seconds of physical contact could elevate your mood for up to 24 hours. Who can argue with that?

Convinced yet?

I hope so! If these six reasons you need to be touched didn’t convince you, I don’t know what will. A little physical contact will go a long way to making you healthier, happier, less stress, and more fulfilled. Simply hugging your loved ones every day can increase your bond on a staggering level. Are you going to hug somebody today?

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More by this author

Daniel Wallen

Daniel is a writer who focuses on blogging about happiness and motivation at Lifehack.

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Last Updated on December 2, 2019

10 Powerful Ways to Stop Worrying and Start Living Today

10 Powerful Ways to Stop Worrying and Start Living Today

Plato knew that the body and mind are intimately linked. And in the late 1800s, the Mayo brothers, famous physicians, estimated that over half of all hospital beds are filled with people suffering from frustration, anxiety, worry and despair. Causes of worry are everywhere, in our relationships and our jobs, so it’s key we find ways to take charge of the stress.

In his classic book How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, Dale Carnegie offers tools to ditch excessive worrying that help you make a worry-free environment for your private and professional life.

These are the top 10 tips to grab worry by the horns and wrestle it to the ground:

1. Make Your Decision and Never Look Back

Have you ever made a decision in life only to second-guess it afterwards? Of course you have! It’s hard not to wonder whether you’ve done the right thing and whether there might still be time to take another path.

But keep this in mind: you’ve already made your decision, so act decisively on it and dismiss all your anxiety about it.

Don’t stop to hesitate, to reconsider, or to retrace your steps. Once you’ve chosen a course of action, stick to it and never waver.

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2. Live for Today, Package Things up in “Day-Tight Compartments”

You know that feeling: tossing, turning and worrying over something that happened or something that might, well into the wee hours. To avoid this pointless worrying, you need “day-tight compartments”. Much as a ship has different watertight compartments, your own “day-tight” ones are a way to limit your attention to the present day.

The rule is simple: whatever happened in the past or might happen in the future must not intrude upon today. Everything else has to wait its turn for tomorrow’s box or stay stuck in the past.

3. Embrace the Worst-Case Scenario and Strategize to Offset It

If you’re worried about something, ask yourself: “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” Could you lose your job? Be jailed? Get killed?

Whatever the “worst” might be, it’s probably not so world-ending. You could probably even bounce back from it!

If, for example, you lose your job, you could always find another. Once you accept the worst-case scenario and get thinking about contingency plans, you’ll feel calmer.

4. Put a Lid on Your Worrying

Sometimes we stress endlessly about negative experiences when just walking away from them would serve us far better.

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To make squashing that worry easier, try this strategy, straight from stock traders: it’s called the “stop-loss” order, where shares are bought at a certain price, and then their price development is observed. If things go badly and the share price hits a certain point, they are sold off immediately. This stops the loss from increasing further.

In the same manner, you can put a stop-loss order on things that cause you stress and grief.

5. Fake It ‘Til You Make It – Happiness, That Is

We can’t directly influence how we feel, but we can nudge ourselves to change through how we think and act.

If you’re feeling sad or low, slap a big grin on your face and whistle a chipper tune. You’ll find it impossible to be blue when acting cheerful. But you don’t necessarily need to act outwardly happy; you can simply think happier thoughts instead.

Marcus Aurelius summed it up aptly:

“Our life is what our thoughts make it.”

6. Give for the Joy of Giving

When we perform acts of kindness, we often do so with the expectation of gratitude. But harboring such expectations will probably leave you disappointed.

One person well aware of this fact was the lawyer Samuel Leibowitz. Over the course of his career, Leibowitz saved 78 people from going to the electric chair. Guess how many thanked him? None.

So stop expecting gratitude when you’re kind to someone. Instead, take joy from the act yourself.

7. Dump Envy – Enjoy Being Uniquely You

Your genes are completely unique. Even if someone had the same parents as you, the likelihood of someone identical to you being born is just one in 300,000 billion.

Despite this amazing fact, many of us long to be someone else, thinking the grass is greener on the other side of the fence. But living your life this way is pointless. Embrace your uniqueness and get comfortable with who you really are: How to Be True to Yourself and Live the Life You Want

8. Haters Will Hate — It Just Means You’re Doing It Right

When you’re criticized, it often means you’re accomplishing something noteworthy. In fact, let’s take it a step further and consider this: the more you’re criticized, the more influential and important a person you likely are.

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So the next time somebody talks you down, don’t let it get to you. Take it as a compliment!

9. Chill Out! Learn to Rest Before You Get Tired

Scientists agree that emotions are the most common cause of fatigue. And it works the other way around, too: fatigue produces more worries and negative emotions.

It should be clear, therefore, that you’ve got to relax regularly before you feel tired. Otherwise, worries and fatigue will accumulate on top of each other.

It’s impossible to worry when you are relaxed, and regular rest helps you maintain your ability to work effectively.

10. Get Organized and Enjoy Your Work

There are few greater sources of misery in life than having to work, day in, day out, in a job you despise. It would make sense then that you shouldn’t pick a job you hate, or even just dislike doing.

But say you already have a job. How can you make it more enjoyable and worry-free? One way is to stay organized: a desk full of unanswered mails and memos is sure to breed worries.

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Better yet, rethink about the job you’re doing: What to Do When You Hate Your Job but Want a Successful Career

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Featured photo credit: Tyler Nix via unsplash.com

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