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Saturday, 24 November 2018

NaBloPoMo 2018: Day 24: What's your Hug-o-meter reading?

Trying to formulate a theory about why people behave the way they do, I’ve stumbled upon a small observation. I think people who are quarrelsome, always complaining, on edge, irritable, easily offended or in a general state of anger, are often those who do not have anyone being nice to them; not much affection comes their way.

At first glance, it sounds like the chicken-and-egg story. Are they irritable because no one is nice to them, or is nobody nice to them because they are irritable? A vicious cycle indeed, so, perhaps the only way to find out is to break the cycle somewhere?

As I looked for information about any research that will support my theory, I found something about hugs. Someone I met recently also had told me that hugging makes one feel good, so I read on.

It seems the famous psychotherapist Virginia Satir, who was an expert in family therapy, said, “We need four hugs a day to survive, eight hugs a day for maintenance and twelve hugs a day for growth.”

I also chanced on this article about “Hug Therapy” – it explains how something as simple as hugging can work wonders – for the one receiving the hug, as well as the one giving it.

Of course, in these loaded times of #MeToo, I suppose a warning is mandatory – before you lunge to hug people, please ask them if they are okay with it and if someone says “no” please keep away.

I’m sure all of you reading this know at least one person who falls into the personality profile I described at the beginning. 

So, here’s the homework I’m prescribing – for the next one month,  start being nice to them, no matter how difficult it is? There are different ways of being nice, and I leave it to you to figure out which way you want to use – all of the following qualify:

- Giving a hug

- Smiling

- Not stopping communication

- Going out of the way to do nice things

- Talking pleasantly even when provoked

- Ignoring irritating things being done or said

I chanced on this picture today, and it triggered the writing of this post.

 As I looked at the picture, I thought – it sounds so easy in this pic, but reality may not always be so rosy? Then, I looked again at the picture, and I realized something – the one saying, “It’s ok” doesn’t have the blindfold saying “Ego” across his eyes. Are we ready to take off that blindfold? Are we ready to be the one who goes the extra mile without whining about, “Why should it always be me?”

Being both the receiver and giver of kindness, I know the methods I've outlined, work. I’ll be waiting to hear about the results of your experiment!


  1. My jaadoo ki jhappi for you, Anu 🤗
    Indeed, hugs make things so much better...

    1. Thank you sooo much, Shilpa! Right back at you 🤗


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