Under pandemic, we have become deprived of the crucial neurochemical, oxytocin. This hormone is important for reproduction – from orgasm, to childbirth, for bonding and breastfeeding. It is also crucial as a social reward for behaviors that can lead to passing on our DNA – hugs, touching, being in a like-minded group, and even being in a big party, concert, or sports event where everyone is on the same page. Even the social reward of seeing smiles has been covered up by masks. Handshakes and hugs are forbidden out of prudence.
This is even worse for single people or people living alone. Opportunities to socialize and perhaps meet a new partner are severely limited under the current guidelines – whether you want to meet in a bar or at church.
Trust busting pandemic practices…
And oxytocin promotes trust in those around us. With low oxytocin, constantly trying to “Distance”in case others will make us sick, and people masking their facial expressions it becomes difficult to trust. This only adds to the polarizing situation in our country.
To avoid taking drastic measures that can put ourselves and all we come in contact with at risk, try these:
Pandemic-Safe Ways To Have Some Hits Of Oxytocin Every Day
- Alone? Try self massage to release some oxytocin. It’s an Ayurveda practice to do frequent self massage with sesame or almond oil (or medicated oils for specific kinds of support). It doesn’t have to be fancy, just do what feels good before a nice warm bath or shower.
- You can also give yourself hugs or soothingly place your hand on your heart. This is shown to increase oxytocin.
- Many people have learned the Zoom habit – meeting with video chats. This is more rewarding than just audio phone calls, seeing the other person adds a stronger dimension of connection…and oxytocin.
- Some research has shown that practicing hatha yoga can help with some oxytocin. This is in addition to helping reduce anxiety & depression and supporting healthy sleep.
- Loving-kindness meditation, also referred to as compassion meditation, involves directing thoughts of love, compassion, and goodwill toward someone in your life and sending thoughts of peace and wellness toward them.
- If you are living with someone else you like, you might try cuddling and hugging with that person. And maybe you don’t have another person, but have a pet. Petting your pet also releases oxytocin!
- And if you are locked-down with your lover, having sex is a premier way of getting oxytocin. Of course, if you are not with a lover, you can have orgasms on your own! Just be aware that too many orgasms can deplete your immune system. (Ayurveda has guidelines for different ages and body types as well as special ways to renew after sex to avoid this.)
I hope this list gives you some ideas for yourself and some compassion for all those wild and crazy people gathering together during the time of COVID 19.
For more info: www.wisewomanhood.com