Give hugs freely

Maybe it goes along with my lovey-dovey themes lately, but there is something that’s been on my mind lately and I wanna share it.

You guys…we all need to give our hugs more freely.

Why? Because you never know who could use it.

A couple weeks ago I lost a friend. She suffered for years from severe depression.  On the outside, she was extremely bubbly and full of life and loving and passionate. But she had demons. Legitimate demons. She struggled for years with them.

I don’t for a minute believe that a single hug would have made a difference. This woman was surrounded by people who truly loved her and showed it often. She had a medical condition that she battled for years. And eventually, her condition won.

I do believe that it’s good to be reminded that you’re not alone in the world. It’s good to be reminded that somebody cares about you. It’s good to be reminded that you’ve got support of people around you. It’s good to be reminded that people- though they do mean things- are inherently good.  And sometimes, it’s good to be reminded of all this without excessive wordiness. Just through a single, simple action. Like a hug.

Now, I’m not advocating you go out with open arms and hug everyone in sight. Mostly because, as a person with a self-described “stranger magnet,” I do not want to be attacked by more strangers who know I will politely accommodate to almost all their odd requests.

I’m advocating we all take a moment and recognize that the people around us are human beings with their own unique stories, problems, issues, strengths, and demons. No matter how put-together someone might seem on the inside, they could be struggling with some deep-seeded issues. And maybe- just maybe- you taking the time to truly listen to them or ask about their day  or smile or even give a hug, could make a world of difference.

Maybe it will and maybe it won’t. But I’d venture to say that if you actually take the time to do a small kindness in your day in some capacity, you’ll feel calmer and more rewarded and connected to the world as well. So really, you can only gain from the gesture.

So if you feel like the moment calls for it, give someone a hug. It’s pretty much accepted among my friends that they could at any given moment get a hug from me. And if they introduce me to someone important to them, that person’s getting a hug. Why? Because you’re important to my friend so you’re important to me. I don’t care if it makes them uncomfortable. Unless the situation is totally inappropriate (and there are some, you guys, I’m not total hippie dippie), my go-to move is the hug.

I’m a hugger, for sure. I happily give hello and goodbye hugs freely. I think people come to expect it at this point from me and I don’t mind meeting those expectations. It’s nice. It’s a reminder that I have a community of people who care. It’s a reminder of closeness. It’s a reminder of sameness. Plus, it’s healthy!

People need to be touched (appropriately). So why not be the instigator to do it?

So, you guys… open those arms and bring it in. HUG TIME!

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