Touch is an effective way to build trust between two people. It calms us and has even been shown to ease cardiovascular stress. So, next time you go to shake someone’s hand in addition to making it firm let it last a second or two longer.

Research uncovered that the orbitofrontal cortex of the brain is activated during touch. This is the part of the brain that controls our feelings of reward and compassion. You can increase a person’s feeling of accomplishment by giving them a pat on the back when you tell them they’ve done a good job.

Numerous studies, including one on the performance of NBA teams, have found that touch increases a person’s willingness to cooperate and work with others. If you plan to ask someone in your life for help, to change their behavior or consider your viewpoint, find a way to work in discreet physical contact when you initiate the conversation. The other person may not even realize that you touched them, but it will register subconsciously and create a bond.

Keep your touch brief and keep it to the back or arm from the shoulder to hand. These are generally considered to be more acceptable areas for touch.

One of the most poignant studies to weigh the affects of massage came from a study conducted by Tiffany Field, the director of the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami. She found that premature babies that had three 15-minute sessions of touch therapy a day gained 47 percent more weight than babies that didn’t receive therapeutic sessions.

Massage doesn’t just work out kinks and soothe sore muscles. It can also help you stress less and communicate better – whether you’re giving or getting a massage. The beauty of massage is it’s a two-way street. The person giving the massage is receiving just as much contact and non-verbal signals. This type of interaction can increase trust and feelings of safety.

Happy Touching…Keep Smiling…

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