Touch shouldn't be Taboo!
Societal norms are fascinating. And debilitating. In some countries we grasp a fellow human by the shoulders or arms and bring them in for a hearty hug, possibly even kissing each cheek. In the U.S.? We wave. Or we might shake hands if it’s the first time we’ve met, but typically only in a professional setting. When was the last time you hugged someone? I mean, truly hugged someone? Probably a spouse, a close family member, or someone you’re dating. Maybe a close girlfriend (if you’re female). Do men hug each other? NO! It’s just not done.
To truly feel the physical, mental and emotional benefits of a hug, you have to hold the person longer than a couple seconds. Amy Potgieter, our own GuaSha Therapist, recommends 20-30 seconds, at least! Dr. Bessheen Baker at the Naturopathic Institute of Therapies and Education recommends the same period, and also adds another twist: try it as a heart-to-heart hug, both parties leaning right instead of left. She calls it the Naturopathic Hug. Why? Because it’s healing! Hugs heal. Touch heals. And why not have your heart fields aligned?!
I recently have had the pleasure of enjoying time to myself. Not only do I not have children, but I am in the rare and beautiful space of existence where I am spouse-free. However, I am recognizing a missing piece: Human interaction on a closer level. Specifically, touch. You’ve heard that babies do not survive if they are not held? Adults are no different. Mark Balcer, our own Reflexologist, Reiki Master, and EnergyTouch practitioner, stated recently that “retirees who have experienced the death of a spouse, know they need weekly massages in order to live.”
Why do Myofascial releases work so much better if it’s skin-on-skin? Perhaps it’s because our bodies respond to that connection. Massage is the same; better if it’s skin-to-skin.
A few weeks ago, I looked at my own health and how it’s been rocky since I’ve been single (and not dating). I have now scheduled regular massages for myself. It is so important! I thought it didn’t matter if I dated anyone. I figured I was good on my own, that I could overcome the desire for that intimacy for right now. But my body has suffered, as a result.
So, you ready for this?
I don’t care who ya are, even if you have a large family, or married for 50 years (and especially those of you who are alone, regardless of who you live with, and you know what I’m taking about if this is you)...
Either get yourself some long heart-to-heart, skin-on-skin, 30 second hugs, or...GET THEE TO A MASSAGE SESSION!
Skin-on-Skin is not just for newborns!
Carolina is offering Bodywork in the afternoons at Custom Wellness. And I’m so excited about her talents! So far, every person whom I have talked to, who has experienced her Bodywork sessions, has raved about her. Ya’ll gotta try her out!
Massage is a way we can get that “Touch” in a socially acceptable scenario. And those of you who don’t care about socially acceptable, GOOD FOR YOU. I charge you with spreading the hugs.
Author: Connie Kelly, B.S. MedSci, N.H.E. (Natural Health Educator)
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