Follow along with the transcript below:

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Yes. Congratulations. We made it and it’s a crazy day already. Today we’re going to talk about something that I think everybody needs more of. 

Yes. We’re talking about touch. The reason why we thought about doing touches, 

The Power Of Touch

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Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Over the holiday and around the new year, we were doing a lot because obviously we didn’t go out or do anything. 

We’re watching a lot of the different programs that we’re doing all the countdowns and what everybody really missed during 2020. The biggest thing, that resounding thing that kept coming up was the power to hug other people. 

The first thing they would do when they saw each other is they would hug. They miss hugging their family. They miss hugging their kids. They miss hugging their grandkids. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
All of us have seen the video of the two little boys. They’re our best friends. They were like four or something like that. 

They went running for a big hug. I mean, that’s what this whole society needs. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Yeah. Over and over and over again, the one thing that seems to be missing from everybody’s world is hugging and touching and touch is such a powerful thing. It’s so powerful. 

You guys, not just in a space of touch like power, but touch can be everything. It can be, it can be loving. It can be soft. It can be intimate. It can be comforting. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
To communicate all levels of emotion. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
100%, 100% of newborns that are giving, nurturing, touch. They grow faster and have more improved mental and motor skills. 

People who are not that’s why that whole skin to skin when kids are born and babies are born laying not only on the mother, but on the father is actually developmental in how we work. Right? 

Children who are raised with more physical interaction tend to be less aggressive and violent. We find that people who are touched more when they’re younger or in general, have a tendency to be more loving, more caring, more empathetic, more understanding of other people. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
Both ways with the negative touch. It has that negative effect, positive, nurturing trust. That’s that positive nurturing touch is what we’re talking about here. That’s that huge, positive effect that has on the body. 

Most Any Kind Of Touch Can Be Therapeutic

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Sure. 100% like not even in the whole, like the nurturing between parent and child, but also between two people between people who are partners, who cuddle have been shown to have lower stress levels and blood pressure and improved immune function in those. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
That don’t hold hands, 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Hold hands. The other thing about elderly people is that those who receive a soothing affirming experience of touch have been shown to have a better handle the process of aging and passing with dignity. 

The one thing that keeps coming up with us over this lockdown, pandemic, quarantine and lack of touch is how it’s truly affecting. Not just the younger, not just the older, but everybody. I wanted to talk about what touch actually means to us. 

First of all, we tend to think that we can only have conversations verbally, right? Communication can only matter between voice to voice and or even body language. 

We’re seeing somebody we’re listening to people, but they found through a lot of different studies that the power of nonverbal communication, I E touch will actually, you can actually find out what’s going on with somebody based on how they feel and how you’re touching them and how they react to your touch. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
There’s a lot of good touch. There’s a lot of not so good touch, obviously. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
Well, you can tell them perhaps people who have been through that, not so good touch. What we do is body workers. 

We lay our hands on people all day long, and we can sense when there’s apprehension, when there is a struggle going on within a person, even though they didn’t verbalize anything, you could feel it tenseness. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Well. They also say it increases the speed of communication. Anything that you’re trying to get across the power of touch will actually speed up that whole type of communication. 

They also see that they’ve done studies where they’ve taken people and had them communicate one thing verbally. They’ve actually had them go through and communicated again. As they’re doing it, they’re doing a slight touch of the hand or doing a touch on the shoulder. 

They’re just doing a touch into the back. They’re noticing that it’s actually coming through much better and much more communicative and much more clearly as far as what they’re trying to get across based on just doing it. 

The other thing with all of the zoom and all of the online and distance learning is there’s no physical interaction. Even if a teacher just comes up and I know teachers aren’t allowed touch. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
Students a lot, 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Just doing this can mean a huge difference between somebody feeling like they’re not feeling a part of things and feeling understood, and it can actually change a person’s life. 

One of the other things about touch is we feel more connected to somebody if they touch us. Right. But why? Let’s talk about what happens when you actually touch somebody and what it does in what it stimulates. So let’s look. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
I’m so interested right now. I mean, I was like a loop for both. Now I’m in, what’s going on. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
You’re a jerk. I’ll touch you, but I know you’re going to jail. Listen, you, when you stimulate a pressor pest pressure receptors on the skin, remember the body is all alive in here. 

Everything we do is sending messages back up to the brain, back down to the body, back up to the brain, back down to the body. We have receptors that are telling you if there’s pain, if there’s movement, if there’s too much stretching, if there’s not enough stretching, if there’s activation, if there’s not now, when you stimulate the pressure receptors in the skin, you can lower your stress hormones. 

What it does, is it a warm touch actually stimulates the cuddle hormone or oxytocin. What that does is oxytocin is the hormone that enhances the sense of trust and attachment. 

We tend to feel more comfortable when we’re working with somebody and when we’re touching them, we’re giving off a sense of confidence, a sense of attachment, a sense of comfort, 

We Become More Attached To People When We Touch Them

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
Extremely powerful. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Yeah. It also increases our propensity for self caring. Anytime we hurt ourselves. The first thing we want to do is touch ourselves. 

If we have a bruise, we tend to go right to where it is. If we have any T any injury, we go right in, we touch it. It’s the first thing that we do. Not only that, but flipping our hair, hugging ourselves, rubbing. If we’re getting cold, we touch ourselves for self-care and to also calm ourselves down. 

In certain times of very high stress, other common behaviors are massaging our forehead and our temples, rubbing our hands, stroking our neck. However, we want to do it to create that sense of calm. 

We need to do it. Times of overwhelm, we have a tendency to kind of hold ourselves and hug ourselves. We have a tendency to hold our hand and if we have pain, we go right into it. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
I mean, if you even think about just holding someone’s hand, the simple act of holding someone’s hand can change everything. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
All right. Well, and it, what it does is they even shown that it will lower your heart rate, lower your stress, hormone, lower your cortisol level, which is a big stress hormone. Once we are stressed, we tend to release cortisol into our body, which then goes bananas in our body. 

That’s where your weight gain comes from. That’s where all of the, Was it the reasons peanut butter cups, it was all cortisol. That’s what it is. Just even a little self massage, even having any type of nice comforting touch will slow that release and it will lower the level of it. 

And here’s the cool thing. You guys, we can’t touch without actually being touched. If you’re touching somebody else, it works just as well for us as it does for them. Even if we’re trying touch them and to calm them down, we’re actually getting it just ourselves. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
How cool is. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
That? It’s an energy exchange back and forth between two human. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Beings. Yeah. Yeah. It’s really everything that’s affecting the person that’s touching, it’s affecting the person that’s being touched. 

The beautiful thing for people who are injured and when we work it back into this whole world of soft tissue and injury and fascia and muscles, the touch that we’re administering to our clients is the touch that we’re getting back. 

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve started in a space where I wasn’t really wanting to work either on somebody or feeling like in the space to do it. I’ll tell you, by the time I got done working on that client, what I got back is just as powerful as what I was giving. 

This is how powerful we are and how powerful the body is that we can actually change all how our personnel, not our personality, but how our attitude is and change our environment based around touch. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
We, as Bodyworkers, tend to want to give a lot of ourselves and we, if we do it correctly, we can actually be at the end of the day, when we’ve seen 10, 12 people in one day, we can actually feel more energized than when we started for you. 

If you don’t deplete ourselves. This is because of that energy exchange, and we’re just gaining, we actually gained, we can gain more than we do. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Right? Right. Let’s go back to this oxytocin thing, right? Oxytocin is a hormone that’s naturally produced in the human body. 

It works through the bloodstream and the nerve branches, and it’s linked to the control centers of the brain. It works with all of your other human hormones to produce both psychological and physiological balance. 

You’re not feeling really balanced, your oxytocin levels are off. You can find that when you’re way too stressed, you don’t have enough. When you’re really calm and you’re in more of a meditative state, or you’re your hug, this is why hugging is so important. 

Just the mere act of hugging somebody and touching them and even doing skin to skin is going to drop everything down and start to release those levels. Balancing our bodies and our hormones is really, really important. 

When you feel stressed, it’s going to be a lot of times we’re stressed and the stress is what leads to a lot of your physical ailments. 

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Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
The stress is actually the precursor to a lot of your physical aches and pains, tense muscles, range of motion, not working, right? 

The PR the injury that you may be coming up on having either overuse and, or I just wasn’t paying any attention because I was so stressed. 

I walked into the side of a table or walked into a bed, or whatever. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
All kinds of horrible patterns. Yeah. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Yeah. It really stress literally begins with how you react to the world and how you react to things that are happening. There’s a lot of stuff happening in the world, right? 

As we speak. There are a lot of people who are dealing with a lot of different stress levels. I think the power of touch is the fact that we cannot touch each other, or we don’t have the freedom to go out and touch people as much. 

Now we have almost a fear that’s going against actually touching people. One of the things I was talking about to a client who was telling me about the fact that he can’t talk to him, he can’t touch his dad. He’s like, they’re a very huggy family. 

They’re a very lovey huggy family. He goes, I go and see him. I can’t touch him because I’m so afraid that he may contract whatever, whatever he may contract. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
He’s like, so the fear of touching is actually changing up how we deal with people. It’s making us more, 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
What’s really stressful is just from that. 

Bad Touch Has A Very Negative Effect

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Alone. Right. Well, and it’s making us more disconnected as well. All of a sudden, instead of really being connected to another human being, we’re becoming so disconnected and it’s actually changing our own personalities. 

We tend to be more aloof. We tend to be more introverted, because we really don’t want to get out and see and feel because we have this underlying fear of what touch really is when actually touch is actually there to help you not hurt you. 

Now, now there’s hurt hurting touch as well. What happens when the touch turns and it becomes painful either in tragedy, injury or in something else where somebody is actually doing something and it is creating a bad touch scenario, 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
You’ll have the exact opposite effect on the body. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Yeah. How so? 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
Oh yeah. I’m from Y Y what I believe. You can tell me about the fact that it actually can shut down systems in the body. 

I actually think the person would go more inward rather than be more open that itself closes down the systems. Yeah. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Yeah. Because, your body will respond to touch with any, usually with good touch. It reduces your stress hormones, but if you’ve had a lot of bad touch and, or you haven’t been touched for a long time, it’ll actually raise your stress hormones. 

You even see that in animals, have you ever watched an abused animal or a dog that’s been neglected or laid out in the backyard forever? He’s been chained to the tree or whatever people come to rescue them. 

The first thing that they do is they don’t want you to touch them there. They have this fear of touch because either they haven’t had it because they’ve been neglected and, or they’ve been abused. 

The people that are touching them, they don’t know what to think, because they don’t understand how to define what kind of touch that is. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
Basically you’ve got the opposite of that’s true. You have a dog, you have one that will let loves touch. 

The next thing, they’re trying to get up in your everywhere because they can’t get enough of you. And that’s the exact opposite. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Yeah. The beauty of physical touch is it can change everything, drop your cortisol levels. It can, it can change your stress hormones. 

It can, it can really change the game for the majority of people, especially with cortisol, oxytocin drops. The oxytocin gives you more oxytocin, makes you balanced, drops the cortisol level, which is your body’s main stress hormone, the main stress hormone. 

We’re trying to keep that low because that will go right to your heart. We really don’t want to be messing around with anybody’s hearts, especially today. It also takes part in the regulation of blood pressure, blood glucose, inflammation, as well as sleep and energy. 

How powerful is that? Just of touch that’s rubbing, but will toe touches touch now, even, and if you’ve noticed even really great salespeople now understand this power of touch and the psychology behind it, because when you actually buy something, they’ll give you the hand over handshake, or they’ll give you something and they’ll put their hand on yours. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
What they’re doing is they’re basically giving you. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Well, not even just real assurance, but it’s more like it Subha. No, no. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Dang. I can’t think of the word right now. My brain just stopped working. It’s really like, oh my gosh, my S it’s not, it’s not on the level it’s on underneath the. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Thank you. Totally stopped by bad. It is. What it does is, is in doing that, it’s giving you that whole idea of like, this person’s trustworthy, even though they might not be, but they’re really thank you, subconscious. 

Thank you, Sadie. I knew I was brain farting right in the middle of all of this. He did not help me at all. All right. So the body responds to physical touch. The other thing is you are relieved both mentally and physically. 

The beauty of bodywork and getting somebody to actually work on you. The big picture of this is that we need to touch each other more and we need to do it in a powerful way. 

Right? The second thing is if you have any type of injury or any kind of chronic pain or any kind of chronic challenges, you really want to have somebody work on you because somebody correctly, somebody with really solid, confident touch, because you can have a therapy, a therapist, or anybody working on you that actually hurts you. 

Choose Your Bodyworker Carefully, The Way They Touch You Matters

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
What that does is it sets up a really bad pain trigger for that, where you’re actually going to shut down instead of move forward. 

As far as the body work goes, as far as therapy, as far as the pain and injury side of things go, we want to have somebody who slowly moves in and allows the body to let go. 

Yeah, the, one of the biggest things that I think is interesting is when you’re getting any type of massage or you’re getting any kind of therapy, as far as injury, the beauty of it is you want to actually do three passes. 

It’s always, the sequence of movement is always in threes. The reason why is any time you’re starting to touch somebody, you introduce new stimuli to the area. So the body is like new stimuli. We don’t like that. It’s crazy. The second pass, now we know, Hey, that’s us. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
The person already puts some stimuli into this area, so we’re not going to freak out and we’re not going to defend that movement, right? The third time that’s when they know what’s coming. 

Now all of the changes can take place in the, in the body and in the tissue. You’re getting worked on, you’re going to notice that a lot of therapists will go back and forth with you two or three times. In all different types of therapy and movements, you want to actually do a sequence of at least three passes when you’re touching someone. 

The reason why is because you want them to feel comfortable and safe and secure and scared and not scared. What that will do is it will again, drop your oxytocin level or raise your oxytocin levels, drop your cortisol levels and leave you in a balanced state because ideally good touch is going to put somebody into a parasympathetic state of the nervous system. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
That is when the healing actually takes place. The Mayo clinic actually reported that a 60 minute massage can lower your cortisol by an average of 30%. 

That’s a lot, that’s a lot when cortisol levels decline, serotonin, which is one of the body’s anti-pain mechanisms increases by an average of 28% after receiving a massage by lowering your cortisol and increasing your serotonin, you boost your body’s ability to fight off pain, anxiety, and feelings of sadness. 

Really it, this is now about getting touched, like have people touch you? I know your family is probably irritating you beyond anybody’s business right now, because you’ve probably been stuck in doors with them forever. 

Now is a time where you really want to reach out and touch somebody holding somebody’s hand, rubbing somebody’s arm, even just putting a nice hand on somebody’s back is actually doing both of you a huge favor. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
It’s not so much for that other person as it is for you as well. 

Because even though I’m, you’re getting a massage, you’re getting worked on the person that’s working on you is having the same effect that you are having because the body is amazing that way. 

As far as the power of touch, it is super powerful and it is a total game changer. Don’t think that touch just has to be when you’re getting a massage or when you’re getting a it’s either good or bad, there’s touch on all different levels, 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
A hundred percent. The whole thing was we try to get a lot more of the good kind of touch as often as possible. 

Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Yeah. Yeah. Now at all times reach out and touch somebody’s hand, touch, amaze back, just really thinking about. 

Mike Julian LMT, CAMTC
Come with a really positive, straightforward intent of what that touch is supposed to represent and what that touch is communicating. It can be a really positive experience if you come with not so good intentions, you can have the exact opposite effect, 

We All Need Touch

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Julie Pitois LMT, CAMTC
Right? 100%. So the power is in your hands. Literally, literally the bigger picture and the big takeaway is everybody needs touch and we all need it. 

Even the ones who don’t want it, don’t give up on them because those are the ones that probably really needed the most.

We want to make sure that if you’re getting what you’re giving and everybody is starting to feel well, but if you ever feel really stressed out or you feel really super overwhelmed, having somebody actually touch you is probably for the best for both of you. 

I hope you all have a fantastically touching day. You’ve touched every single one of us every time you show up. I hope we’ve touched you in a good way,