Hug It Out

Wednesday, April 2, 2014


In one of my classes last quarter our professor told us that the quickest way to shorten an argument with your spouse is to stop, take a deep breath, and hug for ten seconds.  Ten seconds! Have you ever tried hugging someone for ten seconds?? It's a long time, even when it's with someone you love.  But hugging is proven to lower stress, increase levels of oxytocin (the "love hormone"), and promote bonding between two people.  Here are some other benefits that come when you hug it out:


  • The brain releases dopamine: aka the "pleasure hormone"
  • Your muscles relax
  • Your self esteem is boosted
  • Your blood pressure is lowered
  • Your immune system is given a boost.


Virginia Satir, who is known as "the mother of family therapy" said,

"We need four hugs a day for survival. We need eight hugs a day for maintenance. We need twelve hugs a day for growth"

So grab your partner, a friend, a family member, or heck- even a stranger and hug it out.  None of this side hug stuff- give em a full, frontal, all-up-in-your-business hug.  You'll both be better off for it.

Sources: 1//2

14 comments

  1. :) I think that's a good idea. We've sometimes taken the strategy of holding hands when disagreeing about something--I think hugging would have a similar effect!

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    1. That's so sweet! It's pretty hard to stay mad at someone when you're holding hands with them :)

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  2. Love this! Took Family Sexuality my junior year and we had a whole class over "hugging until relaxed." David Schnarch devotes a whole chapter to it in his book "Passionate Marriage" (it was one of the class textbooks). But the reason I remember this so well is because in this particular class we had to hug a stranger. Some people were really good at it and hugged for minutes - I wasn't one of them! However, Daniel has employed this technique many times when I'm stressed or anxious - it works every time. Sorry for the novel!

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    1. No need to apologize- I loved reading your thoughts! After reading your comment I looked up that book and it sounds fantastic. I bet that was a fascinating class!

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  3. I love this! A lot of times when I come home from work and my husband knows I'm stressed, he'll say, "We need a rotation". So we hug and we rotate around for like 10 seconds. It's super silly, but it relaxes me so much.

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    1. Oh my gosh, that might just be the cutest thing I've ever heard!

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  4. ah love this! this probably could be one of the simplest yet most helpful marriage tips ever. especially because it's the LAST thing i feel like doing when i'm arguing with my husband...which means i just need to hug him :)

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    1. Agreed- when I'm mad I have absolutely zero desire to show affection... and you're right, that probably makes it even more necessary!

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  5. Oh I'm going to have to give this a try! I definitely know that they work for Raeca, whenever she gets angry and worked up I try to ask her if she wants a hug (which she usually does) and it totally works to calm her down. Now I'll just have to try it out on Jared!

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    1. Oh, sweet Raeca! That's such a neat tidbit that I'll definitely have to try once I'm a parent. Thanks for sharing that!

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  6. "give em a full, frontal, all-up-in-your-business hug. You'll both be better off for it." love it! i have heard this about hugs! when i'm stressed or upset, i sometimes joke that it's because i haven't gotten enough hugs in that day...which is actually true! ;)

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    1. Yes, I'm totally the same way! Sometimes it's amazing what a little lovin' can do for the soul :)

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  7. Hi there! Stopping by from the Jack of All Trades link-up :) This is such a sweet idea! My guy and I tend to take hug breaks when we are disagreeing about something. Even when you're in the middle of a disagreement, it can just make everything slow down and feel okay.

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