Get Real With The English Sisters - Mind Health Anxiety

The Healing Power of Hugs: Balancing Touch and Distance

October 10, 2023 The English Sisters - Violeta & Jutka Zuggo Episode 86
Get Real With The English Sisters - Mind Health Anxiety
The Healing Power of Hugs: Balancing Touch and Distance
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Did you know that a simple hug could be your most powerful tool in combating stress and boosting your immunity? Come, let's embark on an enlightening journey as we unravel the intricate intricacies of physical touch and its profound influence on our well-being and development right from our infancy. We'll be unraveling the fascinating findings of world-renowned family therapist Virginia Satir who strongly recommends a daily quota of 11 hugs for a healthy life.

Feeling the chills when someone crosses your personal bubble? Or sensing an immediate calm when a friend places an understanding hand on your shoulder? We'll be navigating through these and more as we discuss the importance of balancing physical distancing with our innate need for touch, especially in the years after the pandemic.  Additionally, we'll explore the significance of teaching our children about consent, the right to demand and deny hugs and how to express their need for affection. Let's learn together how to give a healing hug and why we should let it linger till the other person lets go. Let's touch hearts through touch!

Hypnotherapy coaching sessions can help if you are struggling with anxiety.  Please email us at englishsisters@gmail.com if you would like help with an issue, mentioning this episode of our podcast for a special discounted rate. We work with clients worldwide over Zoom or Skype. Buy our Book Stress Free in Three Minutes available on Amazon and Kindle, to help support our work. Thank you!

Please follow us and make this podcast a healthy habit for you, your family and friends to listen to weekly by sharing this with as many people as you can!
Thank you!
Love and smiles from The English Sisters.

As always we love to here from you please email us with; Get Real with The English Sisters as the subject, at englishsisters@gmail.com

Watch the show on our YouTube  Channel
Follow us on Social Media
Share this podcast with your friends.

Apple Podcasts
Spotify
YouTube Channel
Follow us on Social Media

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

You've all heard of your five a day. Yeah, well, we say what about if we get five cuddles a day too? Yeah, the importance of physical touch that's what we're going to be chatting about in this sweet episode of Get Real With the English Sisters. Welcome everyone, welcome. I mean physical touch. We all know how good it is, don't we? Well, yeah, I think we do, when we get it like a gentle touch.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

However, there are so many times when we don't get it. Well, I think, more than I mean not getting it, I think it's like you have to make an effort to give it. You mean you have to give it and then you'll get it back. Then you'll get it back Because we're so busy in our everyday lives. Sometimes you don't just go over and give someone a hug, do you? Unless you see they're crying or something. Even then, well, no, I mean, yeah, the truth is, you don't have to be in a relationship to get the benefits from physical touch. Obviously, you know, like just a gentle way of hug, then the physical touch of a handshake can be beneficial to us as human beings. Yeah, or a fist bump or something? Yeah, it's just touch, and I think, especially nowadays, after we've come out of the pandemic.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

I think that made us all realise the importance of physical touch and how much we actually missed it. We did miss it. I think everyone did. It was horrible. It was horrible and you missed not being able to have that connection with others.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

It's the first thing you do when you're born, isn't it? You get held. Yeah, because the babies that don't have physical touch actually their development is stunted. It's very stunted. We saw those horrific images from the orphanages. Exactly so it's the first thing you need. And also that study done on premature babies when they actually put them close to the parent's body, the babies started thriving. So I mean, the survival rates went up incredibly. Yeah, so where's that come from? That was all from the physical touch. It just lowers your stress levels, lowers everything down. It's all like an immediate benefit for us and it's such an easy thing to do, isn't it?

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

Yeah, I think that, especially as parents, I think sometimes we don't realise how much our children long for it. Yeah, you're right about that, and we just ignore their calling for it Because they give like little signs, don't they? Because I think when they're babies, they're always being touched, because you have to hold them and you have to pick them up and then, but, but, yeah, well, I think you're a little bit older, though sometimes you forget how important cuddle time is. Yeah, well, that's what you were telling me the other day, because my son now he's 25 and like the other day, he was just like hovering around us, both of us, and he was saying hi, auntie. And then, and then you were going, oh, I think he's like can't you see he's coming close to you and I honestly I didn't notice it. He wanted a hug and you were saying he wants a hug.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

And then afterwards I kind of consciously started thinking, yeah, I should probably give him more hugs. You know, it's a bit of a tough time in his life now and he's suffering from headaches and I thought, you know, maybe just by giving him more, more cuddles, you think it helps a lot, definitely, yeah, so I have started doing that even more. Like, obviously I want to cuddle him. Is my son? I have two lovely sons, but you, I think, when they get older, you forget to cuddle them. I mean, you don't, you can't be cuddling them. What I mean is you forget to give him a hug.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

No, it's like that famous study that now I can't find but the one, the lady that said you need to give 11 hugs for well being, and I think that was for kids or for adults, I don't know. I think it was 10 hugs a day or something. No, it was like 11. I remember when we first learned it it was like I thought what do kids really need that much hugging? I think the thing with us as well, with our modern life, is a lot of times we're all on our separate devices and that you forget to sit that, because before maybe, we'd sit together and watch a film together and cuddle each other and if you had a partner you do that, whereas now what we tend to be more on our separate devices, each one with it goes their own way more.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

Oh, of course, yeah, yeah, it was Virginia Satir, the world renowned family therapist. She was famous for saying we need four hugs a day for survival, we need eight hugs a day for maintenance, we need 12 hugs a day for growth. So she was the first one who was saying that you need like give your kids like 12 hugs a day. And I remember when we first want the kids were little and we thought 12 hugs, surely we give them 12 hugs, but then you don't. No, it's actually a lot of hugs, it's a lot of hugs, it's a lot of hugging, and that's like for survival, like you thrive on that Something.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

You'll be a bit hard is like getting your five a day. It can be quite tricky, yeah, or unless you give them all at once. So you say, okay, one hug, two hugs, three hugs, four hugs, five hugs. No, that doesn't count, no, I think. Well, maybe just one really long big hug. But also, the interesting thing about hugging is that they say you shouldn't stop the hug, especially with your kids, until they pull away from you for the healing hug. Really, oh, so you have to like you really good way. Yeah, so when I hug my kids I wait for them to kind of pull away to sort of say it's over, otherwise I don't let go. Yeah, no, you don't let go. She loves hugging and touching. It's every five minutes. Alright, kiss, kiss, kiss, kiss, good night, kiss, good night, hello, good morning. She's a right cuddler. What? Apparently? Hugs strengthen your immune system and balance your body out.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

We kind of all know that when you're in the hospital and they are nice, or a doctor touches you, how nice it is obviously, if you're not a verse, because you have to be respectful, some people do not like to be touched in anyway, yeah, sure, sure. But here we're talking about people that you know, yeah, normal physical gentle touching, obviously you know, touch, yeah, hugs and normal, yeah, obviously. No, a lot of people on the spectrum, for instance, they don't like it and that's perfectly Ok. You know. I think, yeah, that's perfectly fine, but not for, for I respect, yeah, full. I mean, if you don't have any issues around, it is actually really really good for your immune system.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

You can tell when you're talking to someone if they like to be, you know, you know, just a gentle, gentle, pat or a touch. You're right, I remember when I was actually in the hospital and a nurse did actually just touch my arm, how comforting it was instantly like you think, oh, it was so amazing that one time when I really needed somebody, yeah, and I couldn't get any one of you lot and I just had that and I thought, oh, my god, it was such a small thing. Yes, they often do it, nurses like, yeah, well, that's why do they teach nurses. Because you know it lowers your blood pressure pressure it is good for you, instantly calms you. Well, we did the Havening course, where, where they do yeah, where you learn to, you do like it's like a therapy and you go and just stroke yourself, stroke your yeah, you like, if you watch us on YouTube, we're giving ourselves a hug and then you allow your hands just to slide down your arms and you breathe in deeply and it's actually really soothing and relaxing so you can just do it yourself. If you haven't got anyone, yeah, you just fold your arms across your chest and you can like, even in the shower, for example, whenever you want, whenever you feel like you're feeling a bit tense, and you just gently bring your arms down against your, bring your hands down against your arm. Yeah, you cross your arms over your chest and then you fold your hands and let them slide down your arms and that's it your hands, yeah, your chest, and let them slide down. It's actually I'm doing it now actually feels very calming. It's amazing. It's just like when you pretend to dance with a partner, like when you were kids and you were pretending you were dancing with yourself, and around you can see your, your hands, right around the back. Yeah, it's, there's reasons for that, isn't it as well? It's pretty amazing physical touch, and how often we can forget about it. How, how a simple, such a simple thing we forget that we're so wait, you know we're mammals. We need this. You know to be in a group, to need to be strong. Yeah, exactly yeah. And about? You're right about that.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

Your dog, you know little cats how much enjoy it, all that purring. We've got one of our little rescue cats. As soon as you pull one little hand over her head, it's massive purring so quickly you can see she likes it more than the other little rescue cat because the other one has to be more respected. Yeah, she doesn't like it as much, and the same goes for people. Yeah, it's the same for people. So you know we have to try amazing benefits of it.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

About she giving her, like programming hunks. That's all thinking I'm gonna, not probably. I think I'm gonna become aware of honking more because it's a bit like another to-do thing. You have to put it in your to-do list because we don't do it. Naturally, most people don't the hunk all the time, but to actually put it in your to-do list, I didn't when I started like hugging, like the fruit and veg, you have to get at least five hugs. I would say, oh, yeah, at least five. I mean what you know.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

It's supposed to be one that you can hug, because you're in a long distance relationship or you're not in a relationship or you you haven't got your family around or any friends around. You know, if you, if you're feeling lonely, I suggest that you hug yourself, you can do the havening hug, where you just fold your arms and, you know, allow them to slide down and kind of give yourself a hug, absolutely because it is so important. Otherwise, if you go out and about as well, there's always opportunities of a gentle touch, without being creepy or anything, no, but with you, yeah, you can, you can, you can have. If you look for the opportunities, there will be opportunities to just gently, you know, touch, touch someone respectfully. Obviously they boost oxytocin levels which heal feelings of loneliness, isolation and anger.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

Hugging is a shared experience. You're both giving and receiving. That's why it's so important. That's why I think no, going to group things as well. If you're lonely and you can, you know you can yeah, group things and do like it actually said. They extended hugging, like what you were saying before, extended hugging 20 seconds or more. It boosts your serotonin levels, causing you to feel happy and more positive emotions overall, even if you don't realize it at first. So it might not be an immediate thing. You might think, oh, that person's a bit of a hug, like there might be people that are more huggy and they like now, with the social distancing and everything that's happened, it almost seems weird for me to even say this. But you know what I mean. For instance, before or here, where you were allowed to hug if a child was crying, you're allowed to give them a hug.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

Now, obviously, with all the things that have come out with, teachers have to be careful, but every time our hugging and our human touch has been restricted. Yes, yes, yes, my, my, my, my older son's girlfriend. She works with small children and she says that ever since you know the pandemic and everything she said, they started telling them don't touch the children, don't. She said that they've been so. It's been so bad. They cry so much more in preschool, the little ones. She said it's, but it's been hell. And now finally, she says, finally she was writing. You know, yesterday she was telling us, saying that she can finally pick them up again and you know, like, cuddle them, cuddle them and console them when the mum goes, and everything she said. Oh, it's been so amazing. Now she said the schools have reopened and she can actually pick and hug them again and, and you know, have that relationship with them, have that connection with them. Because these little ones that they're like the purest form of like little, you know, they don't even know what's going on. They just, they instinctively know something is yeah, they want connection, they want all the humans to come and it's just, yeah, exactly. And and they don't know what's going on. But she said now finally, yeah, she was. She was telling my son yesterday how, how good it is finally that you can actually pick them up again and cuddle them. And Anyway, the thing is that for some people that overstep and they act, you know, they abuse their power or whatever as a teacher, then everybody has to suffer, because most teachers are great and they don't, they just want to really give just the hard work.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

Other people have more sinister intentions and that's where all this like distancing and as well, yes, that's where it all comes from, unfortunately, and rightly so, probably. But there has to be a happy medium, I think, where you can't, where common sense is used as well, common sense and guidelines and what you were saying. Nurses are taught. But how calming is it if a teacher also just maybe puts his hand on your arm for goodness sake, I'm not, you know, just or her hand and just said it's okay, yeah, on a shoulder, something like that. I think it's really calming for anyone, really in any circumstance, unless you don't want to. Obviously You're thinking of that, aren't you? You think maybe you don't want to? No, yeah, obviously, because it's. It's not what you were saying before, unfortunately, I think that's what I think it has to be. The creepy ones have ruined it. The creepy ones have ruined it. Yeah, they have, and it has to be common sense and you have to protect the kids, obviously, above all.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

But anyway, in your own family, with your friends, make sure that you give loads of hugs. I would say, I would say, yeah, get them more hugs. Yeah, think of it as you see, these little social media things, aren't you? I'm here for a hug, if anyone wants to hug, can you see how many people go and hug? Yeah, I have seen things like that, like people just stand in the street and they say, like free hugs, gosh. I haven't seen that for a while now, sorry, not that long ago on a social media post, like 10, 20 years ago.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

I think that can be really beneficial as well, even if it's from somebody you don't know, from a stranger. Yes, it's just a connection. Well, these are strangers, but they obviously they've got a little thing on them saying free hugs. And people go up to get hugs and then they will smile Because they might need it. You know, they've had a, even if they don't need it. That's what I mean. They're just the benefit of it.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

You think when you're an adult, you don't need it. No, no, big mistake. I mean, would you go up in the street with a free hug? No, I wouldn't. No, I wouldn't go up to someone and give them a free hug. I mean, I, I don't want to give you a free hug, you wouldn't go in there. Oh, I might. I mean, like what you say. If I knew it was like a thing. Yeah, I don't know, if just somebody comes up and say I'll give you a free hug, I might They've got hugs on you, mate. Yes, they've got hugs. It's just like a thing. Yes, it's a thing, why not? I think it's really lovely.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

Actually, I think it's obviously if it's someone that just wanted to hug you in the street you might think he's going to try and pickpocket, or she's going to try and pickpocket. Yes, you have to be wary as well. Yeah, exactly that's what I mean. There could be lots of other and more sinister, and turning you like that one. Why does a man Mind always have to go there? Because, unfortunately, it's like that, because there always has to be a caution. Yes, there.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

So this podcast is about the benefits of physical touch. Otherwise, you just say can I give you a hug? And they'll say yes or no, and they can consent to it. You know, maybe we should also learn to say I really need a hug today. Well, yes, you know, like in within our friends, we don't say it Because sometimes, with your relationship as well, you're thinking I'm thinking all I want is a hug.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

I think that as well with my husband and I don't want you to go on a massive rant about this I just need a hug Me too, but I don't actually say it. I rarely say it because I think you should know I need a hug, but he doesn't know I need a hug and he just tries to. I have learnt to say it. Sometimes I say I just want you to hug me, that's all I need to have learnt. Yeah, yeah, normally it's some old, have a ripe old age of it. Finally, yeah, but it's difficult though, isn't it? It's a bit. It's not really difficult, but it's not really, I don't know. It's in the culture or something.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

I think it's considered still like a sign of weakness to say you need a hug, so you always have to. I feel as if you have to be strong. Yeah, that's it. Self sufficient, self sufficient, you know? Oh, I don't, yeah, I don't need any one kind of thing, kind of attitude. Yeah, that's not true. When we all need it, we all need it.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

And if we all learnt just to say you know, like it's sweet to say how's your day and tell me about your day, but also to say, yeah, my day's been I need a hug, which would that be amazing, wouldn't it? You know, like, teach the little ones to say I need a hug. Teach them to say it so that they grow up and they know how to, they know to ask for it, like to say I need a hug. I think they do. Now you teach. I don't think they actually say it though. I need a hug, no, I think they do.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

Do you go to your friends and say I need a hug? No, you don't, because I don't normally need a hug of my friends. I'm usually okay, but I would probably give them a hug. No, but you think you always give them a hug. I give them a hug, I give anyone a big hug, yeah. After it, we obviously would consent.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

But do you know what I mean? Do you know? What I mean is like, I think it's not part of our language, it's not part of our culture. We're expected for other people to see that you need a hug and then to give them a hug, yes, and only need a hug when, like, oh, you've had a bad day, because you look sad or something upsetting has happened, yeah, but not just because you need those five hugs a day, exactly. Well, according to Virginia, well, I'm going to cut it to five, because I think twelve is exaggerated in this day and age, because no one's going to get them. So it's going to be like a hardly anyone. So it's going to be like an impossible mission that you're going to fail it. So then you won't bother and you won't even get one hug a day. So let's try and do five, yeah, and if you can't get it from other people. You can cuddle yourself Because I'm thinking that with my husband, I would give him a hug in the morning, an actual hug.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

Yeah, we just give like a little kiss, so it's not a hug. No, I try and give a hug if he's standing up. Really, yeah, you try and get it because you're a huggy one. He's not that crazy about it. I've seen him. He's like alright, you better, is he, does he? Okay, people would be thinking of something more than you if you were like I give him hugs, six and five. We give each other hugs. I give more hugs now because I've met him about a couple of years ago. Yeah, we've met him about a couple of years ago. Yeah, yeah, well, I'm definitely going to do it more now after this podcast. As usual, we're trying to implement everything.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

I know you don't give that many hugs to your husband, err. No, hardly any, probably not. I don't know if he's a real hugger. No, because he probably never has had it. He doesn't know what it's like. No, he doesn't eat. Like. Even if he sees me upset, he'll never say you know, or come over and give me a hug. It's not something. I'm glad you could do the experiment today, when he comes home to give me a long hug Until he actually pulls away, I'm going to imagine him saying Basta, yeah, me too, basta, I want to go and have a shower. What are you doing? He'll be waiting. He'll probably think if you buzz happened. So, yeah, the times I can really remember long.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

I mean, I'm not talking about closeness because we hold hands all the time. Yeah, yeah, no, no, maybe it's a different, just like the bear hug, like the hug. No, it's not really that common. The hugs are actually. They feel different because it's like total body contact. Yeah, body, heart to heart, heart to heart. Yeah, so it feels different than holding hands. Yeah, you actually feel the whole physical. Well, I'm definitely going to try it. I'll be more conscious of doing more, more hugging. Yeah, absolutely.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

And I find that when your children pull away from hugs, that's often when they need it most. So hug, so insist a little bit, unless you see the really don't want it. Obviously that's what you were saying when you were little. I would say no, no, no, I don't want a hug, but really I did want one. Yeah, it's because I was like kind of a little bit embarrassed. Yes, I was always a bit embarrassed of the emotion of the love kind of thing. But I think that's the way we were brought up, more Like, even though Mum was really expressive with I W, I love you, but it was.

The English Sisters Violeta and Jutka Zuggo:

I think the whole general society was more like that, whereas now it's more lovey-lovey I love you, I love you on texts and everything, to all your friends and things. Love you, love you, love you. Yeah, I guess it's not so sacred like it was before. It's sacred like it was before, just like, yeah, you can give hearts to everyone. Now, yeah, there's no hearts and things like that. No, no. So it's cuter now. Oh, it's much nicer. Well, let us know what you think. Are you a hugger? Are you giving hugs? Are you going to get your five hugs a day in? Let us know. Let us know. Tell us how you feel about it. Yes, if you have what's like, did you feel calmer? All these benefits you know, are you being able to reap them? Let us know about that. I say we should give each other a hug now. Okay, any chance she gets is a big hug. Thank you for listening. Thank you, and come and watch the video on YouTube too. Bye-bye. Lots of love and hugs from the English sisters. Bye.

The Power of Physical Touch
The Importance of Physical Touch