Hug yourself healthy...

Last week I had a visit with a friend whom I’ve not seen for 15 years. Mel and I go way back, about as far back as one can go since our mom’s exchanged newborn bliss in the hospital together. While the entire visit was hilariously fun, reminiscing about Acadia days and all, what stayed with me the most was our hug. 

You know what happens with most hugs; we clumsily knock shoulders and pat each other on the back, pulling away just in time before the other person catches a true glimpse of our hearts energy. Sound familiar? 
But when we approach a person with an open heart, flowing with love and warmth, well that hug can change your whole life. 
The benefits of hugging are worth the effort to overcome any insecurity about making intimate contact or expressing your feelings in public. 
Studies show that hugging, especially one’s like Mel’s that are held for more than 10 seconds, can: 
Boost our immunity, speeding up the healing process after an illness or surgery
Enhance our mental stability, alleviating depression and anxiety through the release of oxytocin
Reduce the ill-effects of stress by diminishing the stress hormone cortisol
Lower blood pressure and reduce our risk of heart disease
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, when we authentically embrace another, we address the proverbial spiritual crisis by soothing the inherent fear that we are separate from the world around us. When we open our arms and invite others into our hearts, we remember that we are part of the greater human purpose of living a life of love. 
Happy Hugging my friends!