Friday, April 9, 2010

Do we live in a touchy feely world?

I just read a blog post in the Harvard Business Review, written by Edward Bergman. He was writing it from a business perspective, on how touch can be used in the work place. I think what he pointed out was very relevant in today's world.

After being in a sequence of classes in education, I can see how powerful touch is in the classroom. For so long teachers have been told "Do Not Touch the Students!"

With all they hype on inappropriate situations, this is understandable. But there is appropriate touching, and I think Bergman suggested the correct approach for those times - don't linger! Make it light and brief.

Yes, there are circumstances that you must be aware of, regarding different cultures and an intuitive sense of people's space or 'comfort zone.' But I truly believe that touch is a healing ability we all have been blessed with. However that talent needs to be paired with a love for all of God's wonders.


Poqui Moqui said...

I struggled with this concept of "no touch". As you know I am very much a touch-feel person. Nothing gets me to calm down faster than a hand on a shoulder or a hug. But as a teacher I just couldn't take that chance, so it was hands off.

This decision came when a student reported me for putting my hands on his shoulders when I was talking with him. It was a brief and light touch in a class full of 30+ students but he still reacted violently. It was very awkward so since that day 10+ years ago it was hands off for me.

RedefinedPossibilities said...

I too have adopted a no touch policy with those I work with, but I sometimes find it spreads into my personal life. Balance - that is the key!