When we think of physical touch often what comes to mind is something sexual, or sensual and affectionate at the least, but this isn’t necessarily an accurate idea of what physical contact always is. While intimate contact can be a great thing, there are numerous other platonic kinds of touch and physical contact that we as humans experience every single day.
Few of us really even have the capacity to imagine just how different and lonesome our existence would feel without all of this mundane daily contact.
You probably don’t realize how often throughout any day of your week you get touched, even in some tiny accidental way. The reality is however, that we need and crave this physical interaction with other living things, and people most of all.
Sharing a physical interaction of any kind with another person affects our psyche in subtle but important ways.
A lack of this type of interaction can have devastating results on our mood, mental stability and world view, it can even manifest as physical ailments if it gets bad enough. Keep reading to hear 5 reasons why everyone should have physical touch every day.
1. It aids in recovery and restoration.
When we are trying to heal from an injury, whether it is a purely physical trauma or something that has affected all of our capacities -mental, emotional and otherwise- being touched can sometimes seem daunting.
However, it is incredibly important to allow yourself to experience physical touch, especially during these times. There is even a well known form of healing called “Therapeutic touch” that has been used successfully throughout history in massage, acupuncture, acupressure and other holistic medicines.
2. It sustains and can enhance good mental health.
When a person is feeling really low and caught in a cycle of negative thoughts and inner monologue, being touched by someone else does absolute wonders, first by breaking that cycle and then by infusing a different, more positive energy into you.
It can be grounding and bring you back into the moment in a good way. It also quite literally causes your brain to release healthy chemicals that promote positive mood, productivity and happiness.
3. It can foster empathy.
The benefits of physical contact between two people are symbiotic. It helps to decrease your own stress level, while calming and soothing someone else at the same time.
It can also be a powerful thing to express comfort through physical touch. It can help you to understand someone else’s situation or plight on a much deeper fundamental level than you realized you could.
4. It is the most universal form of communication.
While we might speak the exact same language as the majority of people in our city, state or country, there are many of us who still struggle to clearly communicate what we really mean to others.
For those of us who have a hard time with this due to social awkwardness, difficulty with public speaking or some other inability to use our words quite as well as we would like, physical touch can be a useful and important alternative solution.
Sometimes a simple squeeze of the hand or pat on the shoulder can say exactly what we couldn’t find the words for.
5. It can punctuate spoken word just enough to drive the point home.
Even if you are a very outgoing and well-spoken person who never struggles to use the right words for a conversation, body language and physical contact can still be used to fully and clearly illustrate whatever point it is you want to make in a way that nothing else can.
There is simply something so personal and intrinsic to humanity in a single touch, there is truly no substitute for it.
So, if you’re a person who tends to shy away from physical contact with others or who hasn’t really noticed the lack of touch in your life while wondering why you feel alone or low all the time, it may be in your best interest to try and add that experience in more often.
Put in the effort to make physical contact at least once or twice on a daily basis, and I bet you’ll see very quickly how much it changes you for the better.