Proper social distancing is more important than ever, and some people couldn’t be happier. In fact, the end of mandatory hugging has freed many people to be happier, more social, and awkward in the face of this previously mandatory social interaction. But how do you let someone know you wish you could still hug them when that is absolutely not true at all? Here’s how to do it as convincingly as possible even though it is an outright lie:
Show emotion with your eyes.
If the idea of having to hug another acquaintance again gives you the chills but you still want them to know you appreciate them, show it with your eyes. Turn your eyebrows upward in a way that says, “I really mean what I’m saying right now” like you’re going to cry even though you absolutely aren’t, so that they know you are trying to look like you mean it.
Linger on the “youuuuu”.
When you feel like it’s necessary to say the phrase, linger on the ‘youuuuu’ until they feel compelled to interrupt with something like, “I know, me too!” or “Soon, babe! Big hugs!” which will give you time to step even farther away from them before swiftly leaving.
Hire an Actor or Stand-in
Eye contact and vocal affects still too much work? Lots of actors are looking for work right now – find someone who kind of looks like you to hop in at the end of a dinner or hang to give the most convincing performance of “I Wish I Could Hug You” of the year! Your friends will barely notice with all the masks and the outerwear – even if you are hiding behind a wall just a few feet away, mouthing the words along with her. It’s a pandemic, baby – this is the new normal!
So if you find yourself struggling to say these words with anything other than the forced monotone of an unconvincing lie, try out these tips to help your friend believe that you are actually still a hugger for some reason. We don’t know why you need to do this, but better to keep it up just in case!