How to Hug

Hugging is a conversation, a dance.

When you hug someone, you are relating with them. Notice how they are as your bodies touch. Let the ‘themness’ of them affect you. Move towards them gently. Keep your knees slightly bent so that you can hug without pulling the other person towards you. Shoulders are the first place to touch someone. Slightly low and to the back. It’s the first socially acceptable place to touch someone after a handshake and usually feels fine. Start with one.

Notice immediately how your hug is being received and adjust accordingly. If the other person seems relaxed, you can assume that the way they hug you is more or less the way they would like you to hug them. If they seem uncomfortable about hugging, go for something conservative. If they are closer or more clasping than you want, make eye contact with them. If you are positive to each other, let your embrace smoothly expand.

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