Today is National Hugging Day. I know this because Denny’s told me so on Twitter. Yes, Denny’s the restaurant. Denny’s has a Twitter account, and through it I keep current on all that is trending.
National Hugging Day, or Weltknuddeltag 2011, the top Google trend is an annual holiday officially recognized by the US Patent and Trademark Office. Founded on January 21, 1986 in Caro, Michigan by Reverend Kevin Zaborney, the hug holiday has spread to Canada, England, Australia, Germany and Poland.
Cheryl Phillips, National Hugging Day
When properly applied, a hug is a sincere and tender means of conveying affection. When abused, hugging can be awkward, creepy, even dangerous. Ever meet a hugger for the first time? When a hugger goes in unexpectedly, drinks spill, eyeglasses dislodge, injuries result.
While dating, hugging can define, or doom a relationship. It is important to determine your Hug Compatibility early. If your date is hug-happy and you don’t like to be touched, think about what this means for your future and personal space. Even if both partners have hug empathy, the way you hug is of significant importance:
Don’t hug too often. A hello hug and a goodbye hug are acceptable. Any more might be pushing it, and can communicate insecurity. Some people solicit hugs the way others throw out high fives. Not every occasion is hug-worthy. Practice moderation.
Don’t hug too long. Ever been caught in the embrace of someone who delivers hugs of abnormal length? Do you now duck out the back when you see them enter the room? Human contact is a blessing and can be life-affirming. Holding a hug for more than a second or two is not appropriate unless you are married or pulling someone out of a burning building.
Don’t hug too hard. A firm handshake shows confidence. An overly aggressive hug implies desperation. Trying to demonstrate your manhood through a hug is wrong on several levels. Just go easy. It’s a hug, not the Heimlich Maneuver.
The above guidelines apply while dating, certainly, but also among friends, family and acquaintances. Remember, hugging is not merely a gesture, it is a responsibility. The right hug can bring you closer to the people you care about. An improper hug can land you in court.
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You will be happy you did.
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