#1 Healthy Touch
Vitamin T is the nurturing nutrient found in healthy touch.
Vitamin T is essential for every body and is %100 natural.
Natural sources include handshakes, hugs, kisses, cuddles and rubs.
Absorbed through the skin, this vitamin is obtained from family, friends and co-workers.
When applied, Vitamin T soothes the body, calms the mind, nourishes the spirit and warms the heart.
Positively habit-forming, no known overdose of this nutrient has ever been reported.
Megadoses are provided by massage.
Active ingredient: TLC (tender loving care).
Vitamin T is guaranteed safe for all ages.
The US Department of Health and Happiness has established the following goals for a well-balanced Vitamin T program:
1. An adequate daily supply: one or more doses per waking hour.
2. A variety of sources: including people of different ages, genders and cultures.
3. A balance of giving and receiving: exchanging, rather than only giving or only receiving.
4. The removal of obstacles to absorption: such as distress, low self-esteem and fear.
5. The elimination of all painful forms of touch.
Guidelines for Healthy Touch
Everyone has a very different personal touch history. Touch can be pleasant or painful but Vitamin T always feels good. The degree of caution or eagerness about touch is shaped by the touch experiences a person has encountered in the past. Permission is the key ingredient in all Vitamin T exchanges. Respect is demonstrated by waiting until permission to touch is granted either verbally or non-verbally through body language. The individual’s right to choose whether or not to touch must be honored. Permission is also required before increasing the degree of intimacy. Any touch that comes as the result of pressure or coercion is not Vitamin T.
Sometimes it is hard to tell from a person’s body language if they are receptive to touch. When there is any uncertainty, ask for clarification such as, “May I give you a hug?” Try not to second-guess another’s touch wants. If you sense uneasiness or discomfort, remove uncertainty by asking.
Everyone has the right to protect their personal boundaries by maintaining a clear distinction between sensual and sexual touch. All Vitamin T exchanges require permission. The sensual/sexual boundary is only to be crossed by consenting adults.
The foundation of the Vitamin T philosophy is the principle of Leveling. Leveling is the process of establishing a mutually agreeable Vitamin T exchange. The contact depends on the comfort level and preferences of each person. The R.I.T.ual of touch establishes a balance between the type of Relationship, the degree of Intimacy and the kind of Touch shared by two people. Intimacy is the pivotal component of the exchange. High quality relationships are the sources of high quality Vitamin T.
When a lack of balance exists, leveling is required to create a new balance. In general, the person wanting more intimacy adjusts to the level of the person wanting less. For example, if one person wants a hug and the other feels comfortable with a handshake, the two people would shake hands so that both feel comfortable. Touching without Leveling is not Vitamin T. Maintain clear boundaries and give feedback about what kind of touch is wanted and what is not wanted. Every person has the right to say NO to unwelcome touch.
A Vitamin T deficiency results from a lack of contact with healthy sources of touch. Deficiencies may be caused by illness, stress, neglect or painful experiences with touch. These are typical obstacles to absorption. Deficiency symptoms are physical or behavioral warnings that more nurturing touch is needed. Symptoms include feeling out of touch, lonely, isolated and grumpy. Minor deficiencies result when touch is not presently available. Major deficiencies occur when sources of healthy touch are available but a person is unreceptive to touch. The person’s fear of touch usually reflects past experiences with painful touches called ouches (Touch minus T = ouch). Regardless of degree, unhealed ouches create barriers against interpersonal contact. Vitamin T in a safe and supportive environment can heal ouches.
Each time you touch someone, you enter their personal space. When Vitamin T guidelines are followed, people feel that their personal space is respected. Space invaders are people who intentionally encroach upon another’s personal space verbally, physically or sexually. Space invaders must be confronted assertively. An important goal is to eliminate all forms of painful touch.
- Check in with yourself. What do you want to give? What do you want to receive?
- Define and defend you’re boundaries. Be True to yourself.
- Ask for help if confused or uncertain.
- Adapt, customize, discuss, change your mind for any encounters.
- Give your self the freedom to explore and experiment… just for now.
- Establish explicit consent before being sexual.
- Respect differences in engagement levels.
- Take personal responsibility for your choices, attitudes, emotions, actions.
Honor your desire for an abundant supply of Vitamin T. Help create a culture where warmth and affection can be freely offered. You can make a difference, one Vitamin T exchange at a time Reach out to replenish your supply. Are you getting your RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) of Vitamin T?
#2 Healthy Touch at Work
The workplace can provide us with a source of people with whom to exchange Vitamin T. Since people spend so much time at work, it makes sense to take care of each other while taking care of business. Healthy touch creates good morale, caring relationships and a productive work environment. The appropriateness of touch at work depends on three factors:
• the individual relationships between employees
• the formality or casualness of the workplace
• the amount of visibility to the public.
Touch at work needs to be non-threatening and non-sexual. By adhering to the guidelines of healthy touch, sexual harassment can be prevented. Vitamin T can be used to communicate support, appreciation, respect, encouragement and congratulations. The challenge is to separate out unhealthy forms without losing the positive benefits of Vitamin T.
The Code of Conduct listed below establishes a clear policy for promoting healthy touch at work. It is recommended that employee groups meet with management to discuss feelings about touch and appropriate forms of touch between co-workers.
1. Create an atmosphere conducive to healthy touch.
2. Ask permission before touching if there is any uncertainty.
3. Honor the personal space of others.
4. Exercise the right to refuse touch.
5. Resolve differences in touch comfort levels by direct communication.
6. Exchange only non-sexual forms of Vitamin T at work.
7. Avoid invading another person’s personal space.
8. Eliminate ouches.
9. Respect individual touch needs and values.
10. Incorporate the principles of Leveling and the R.I.T.ual of touch in all touch exchanges.
In this era of controversy and confusion about inappropriate touch, we need to maintain the courage of our convictions about the importance of Vitamin T in our daily lives.
#3 Healthy Touch Choices
What kind of touch do you want an Abundance of…?
These concepts were taken from the book A Guide to Healthy Touch: Vitamin T by Bob Czimbal and Maggie Zadikov.