How Long Is The Perfect Hug
Ever hugged someone and let go too fast? I did. Last week. I was hugging my awesome co-worker Casey. We hug a few times a week. Even though Human Resources might frown upon us doing so, we do it anyway. In addition to working together, we're friends, and that's what friends do occasionally. But last week, I turned loose of our hug faster than she did and she said, "No no, not yet". So I went back in for a longer squeeze. After a few moments, we finished our friendship hug, and then I received an education on what is considered to be the 'perfect' length for a hug.
Casey has always told me I give awesome hugs. But one morning last week, in the breakroom of Townsquare Media Lafayette, Casey was not so complimentary of my hugging technique. This particular morning, she said my hug was not long enough to be the perfect hug.
My awesome sauce co-worker had read an article in The Sunday Times, a digital sister newspaper to Thetimes.co.uk. The article proclaimed that hugging someone for 20 seconds could alleviate stress, beat burnout and give you an overall good feeling.
The information was taken from a new book called, 'Burnout: The Secret to Solving the Stress Cycle'. The book claims that an embrace with someone special, of at least 20 seconds, releases oxytocin. Oxytocin is a hormone that can lower blood pressure, slow your heart rate and put you in a better mood.
The book explains how hugging breaks your full-on 'stress cycle'. A 20-second hug can take your body from "full action mode" to a more relaxed state from the mind down.
So the next time you find yourself in a loving embrace, make it count. Make it last at least 20 seconds.
I can't wait to see Casey in the breakroom tomorrow.