Free Hugs on World Give Day (and Every Other Day)

For a long time the Free Hugs Campaign video has been one of my favorite YouTube videos. This is probably no surprise to those of you who know me. I’ve been known to endorse hugging as a legitimate solution to many-a-problem, for both local issues (aka fights in my house) and global issues (group hugs are powerful stuff). Former coworkers have even nominated me for non-existent Chief Hugging Officer positions. Clearly this is something I’m proud of…

Hugging is one of those things that everyone doesn’t love. It can be awkward and confusing to do with new people, it can be uncomfortable with those you don’t know intimately, and it can leave the scent of someone’s cheap cologne lingering on your clothes all day. I get it. Really, I do.

However on the flip side, it could literally be the one thing that makes your day. I’ve been there, and I’m sure many of you have too. Similar to a smile, an unexpected hug from someone can remind you of the kindness and compassion in the world.

Today I was reminded of how much I enjoy the act of receiving hugs, so I’ve decided to make it my act of giving for World Give Day, a day organized to encourage people to give – whether it’s by making a donation, through their time, or even a simple hug.

I mean, really. What could be more perfect? Everyday I’m surrounded by individuals who are willing to give without hesitation. Whether it’s their time that they’re giving to nonprofits as volunteers or whether it’s their money that they’re giving to individuals like me who are fundraising for a cause. The love is always being spread through my community.

However it can sometimes be tough to find someone to give a much needed listening ear, say a simple “good morning” or lend a quick helping hand when it’s not about a big social cause. We all live very busy lives, and these random acts of kindness are too often overlooked.

So today on World Give Day, in order to remind myself to incorporate random acts of kindness in my daily life, I’m giving out free hugs. And since I’m naturally a hugger I can certainly say that this this won’t be the only day… so consider this is a fair warning for when you see me on the street!

I’m even thinking to make it a strategy for the long-term. I was listening to ABC’s interview with Ethan Austin of GiveForward – the organization that started World Give Day. They actually have a rule that each employee must hug a customer everyday. My immediate reaction: AWESOME! My future employees who don’t like hugging will have Ethan to blame for inspiring me to make it a rule for whatever organization I run/own one day.

What will you commit to give for World Give Day?

This post is part of a blog series inspired by World Give Day and hosted by GiveForward and Jolkona. To find other posts in this series please visit www.worldgiveday.com or follow the hashtag #giveday.

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  • http://lamiki.com/ Laura Kimball

    If I meet someone in real life after getting to know them on Twitter or through another channel online, I usually assume we’re on “hug status.” I’m with you – it’s a much, much warmer “hello” than a handshake.

    I love how you connected giving with random acts of kindness, even those as simple as taking a moment to say good morning. Sometimes giving someone your time, even a fraction of it, can have a huge impact.

    Thanks for taking part in this series, Nikita!

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