The holidays are over: the tree is back in storage, the newness of those perfect gifts has all but faded, the delicious treats have been replaced with small, pasty protein bars, and all the hustle and bustle of family gatherings, Christmas pageants, and shopping malls are a mere distant memory.
One would think that January, when much of life comes to a halt, (especially when it snows in Arkansas!), would be greeted with a welcome sigh of relief, a time to relax a bit, and actually enjoy a warm cup of coffee on a bitter cold day. However, it seems that many suffer from the winter blues around this time of year.
Thank goodness for Kevin Zaboney. In 1986, the recent psychology graduate decided to remedy this situation by founding National Hugging Day. On this holiday, January 21, strategically set between Christmas and Valentine’s Day, everyone is encouraged to reach out and hug a fellow family member or friend.
Hugs are not only a well meaning gesture, they are also packed with wonderful benefits that have been proven scientifically, among them are increased feelings of happiness, better athletic performance, less stress, increased immunity, and greater classroom participation!
Recognizing that many Americans have difficulty showing affection in public, Zaboney recommends that one should always ask before hugging. Of course, it was, and still is, his hope that all such requests will be well received, spreading the love all across this great nation, and around the world. So take a few moments this Saturday and celebrate! It will warm up even the coldest most dreary winter day!