As human beings the sense of touch has always been a natural, ingrained action of connection. It connects us by having a neurological effect on us. The action of touching releases hormones that make us feel happy. As a matter of fact, psychologists say physical touch in the form of a hug is extremely beneficial. Hugs are free and it is recommended we give and receive up to four a day. However, in this world of pandemic with social distancing, can you hug someone from six feet away? The answer is yes! Maybe not a physical hug but we can certainly give that person a verbal hug.
Although the effects of hugs are proven to be beneficial and many of us not only need a hug but also enjoy receiving a hug, we may not be able to give someone a hug right now. In business, pandemic or not, we may not want to give a physical hug. We can, however, give a verbal hug in the form of a compliment or an encouraging word. Think of a compliment as a hug that can engulf someone, that inspires and lifts them maybe even more than you realize.
A compliment must be honest otherwise it is flattery which is mainly used for manipulation. People can usually tell the difference.
Neurolinguistic research states your brain takes 48% longer to receive a negative statement verses receiving a positive one. When someone says something negative about you it is as if the hair on the back of your neck stands up, your body braces and your brain takes longer to hear it. But when someone speaks words of truth about you, you cannot help but hear them. Give verbal hugs by making sure those are words of beauty.
Let us be more mindful than ever of the words we speak. Speak words of kindness and beauty in the form of a compliment or just an encouraging word and let that spread to be the next worldwide pandemic.
So, speak intentionally giving verbal hugs…understanding it is your power for good.
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