Sometimes All We Need is A Hug to Heal the Soul

We all need hugs. Hugs make us feel better, they lighten the load, they make us feel loved. It's also important to offer hugs, not just receive them.
Sometimes All We Need is A Hug to Heal the Soul
Valeria Sabater

Written and verified by psychologist Valeria Sabater.

Last update: 27 May, 2022

Hugs are a way to express affection, understanding, love, and approval.  It says “everything’s okay” and “I’m here with you,” which we all need every once in a while.

Today we want to dive into the value of regularly practicing hugs as an expression of love. In this sense, hugs are more than bodies simply coming into contact.  It’s about offering openness and a hug to heal both souls.

So tell me…do you hug your loved ones daily? Let’s consider it.

Hug to heal and soothe fears

Let’s start by talking about those hugs that are capable of solving problems without almost any need for words.  I bet you yourself have experienced this before too, after fighting with your kids or partner, and you just don’t know what else to do.

There are often times a lot of disagreements that pop up throughout the day that leave behind words that are charged with tension.  At a certain point, the mind can’t even think anymore, but there are still feelings and emotions that tell us that we love that person, and it hurts not to find a solution.

Something so simple as a hug can immediately dissolve tensions, any sense of stress and despair among a couple.  Suddenly everything comes together: your bodies, your emotions, and your cares. 

Sometimes all you need is a hug to heal your soul.

An important thing to keep in mind is that in romantic relationships, it is very common to experience moments of doubt, fear, and worry.

Times when you really need a hug

  • There are times when relationships become routine, every day is just like the other, and in some way, you lose the magic you once had.  That is when doubts arise.
  • You then start to be afraid, you’ll ask yourself if your partner still loves you, if they will continue to want you, and if the relationship will stay strong forever.
  • That is when the need to show authenticity.  Some days, just saying “everything’s good,” “of course I still love you, what a crazy thought,” just isn’t enough.  You don’t want to hear words, you need actions.  And there is nothing better than a long, silent hug.

Keep in mind that there are all sorts of hugs, and whenever you get one, you need to feel that it is real.  That’s when your fears will disappear!

What unites us most with the people we love is a hug

The best hugs are the ones you get when you need it the most. This is when this simple gesture defines who is important in our lives and our hearts.

  • There are many street experiments where an anonymous individual gives “free hugs.”  It’s a positive encounter that offers closeness. However, authentic hugs and the most therapeutic hugs are those that come from loved ones.
  • If a hug connects you to the world, it’s because it came from someone significant to you.  Think about, for example, how children would be if they didn’t have constant physical contact, like caresses and good morning and goodnight hugs.
  • Hugging is a way to recognize an individual.  It says to them that they are part of you and that you see them, you love them and you wrap them in your arms because they are part of your soul. Use a hug to heal them and show them that you care.
  • Nothing can offer as much relief as a hug when you need one and it’s offered sincerely. You feel it in your heart and it can even strengthen self-esteem, creating a pleasant feeling.
A family hugging.

You can initiate hugs!

Sometimes people complain that children or their partner seem a bit “cold,” that it seems like they don’t need these demonstrations of affection, or that they even reject them.

This is part of their personality.  Some people simply don’t thrill with physical contact. However, just because they don’t offer a hug doesn’t mean that they don’t need or appreciate it.  There are some people that find it hard to display this emotional need; they don’t dare do it, and it doesn’t seem like they want to.

  • Once kids get to a certain age, they start to relate hugs with “childish” signs of affection. As they are fighting for their independence, it’s common they will fight you back.
  • Don’t worry when this happens, do not get angry with them or think that they don’t love you.  Believe it or not, a sudden hug will usually get a smile out of your children. Use a hug to heal their worries about growing up and finding themselves.

You might also like: You Can’t Force Children to Kiss in Greeting

We all need daily hugs, or random hugs, to strengthen ties.  It reminds us that “I’m here with you and I will never stop loving you.  You are the best part of my life.”

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Does hugging provide stress-buffering social support? A study of susceptibility to upper respiratory infection and illness (2014). Cohen S, et al.
  • Touch may alleviate existential fears for people with low self-esteem (2013). Mandy Tjew A Sin, Iris K. Schneider.
  •  A cuddle a day keeps the doctor away (2006). Waring B.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.