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Hugs for Tough Guys, Too

I had to laugh when I saw Joe Navarro on the blog Spycatcher advocating hugs to boost your oxytocin.

Even Joe's photo shrieks, "Don't mess with me!" It's not surprising, since he's a former FBI counterintelligence agent and the author of Every Body is Saying.

But he gives good advice for hard-asses and wannabes: You need hugs too.  In his Psychology Today blog, he writes:

Even without giving a hug, people can use their arms to demonstrate warmth and, in so doing, increase their chances of being viewed favorably by others. When approaching a stranger for the first time, try demonstrating warmth by leaving your arms relaxed, preferably with the ventral side exposed and perhaps even with the palms of your hands clearly visible. This is a very powerful way of sending the message, “Hello, I mean no harm” to the other person’s limbic system.

He has other tips for people who crave warm physical contact but shrink away from promiscuous huggies.