This post may come off as a bit unusual but its my Christmas gift to all...
The Western world is full of hugs and kisses, so much so that at times they lose their meaning. The Eastern traditional world is usually the opposite, families and good friends find it enormously difficult to say "I love you" or even give a pat on the shoulder, don't even mention a hug.
In Asia, we find it hard to say affectionate words or even give our parents, loved ones or relatives a simple hug. Words are inventive and can just roll off our tongue, repeatedly saying them is good but sometimes they just lose their effect and essence. Even the usual kisses or pecks become a bit perfunctory.
This Christmas, let the people you love know, really know how much you love them, leaving nothing on the table. Here's how to do it: When you see your loved ones, go to them and slowly stretch out your arms. Ignore whatever they may be saying to you: "what are you doing", "whats up"...etc..
Then just hug them, no words, close your eyes and just think how much you love them despite our many failings and weaknesses as friends, as lovers, as parents, as relatives. The person being hugged may now say things like: "is there something wrong", "what's up with you", "are you alright"... Do not reply... just continue to hug for at least 20-30 seconds... the rule being "Do not be the first to let go", the second rule "Do not say anything", let the touch and pressure of your hug communicate how you feel.
After the initial suspicion, the person should be able to feel what you are trying to say. When words get in the way, give them a real hug. After 20-30 seconds, just smile and say "I really wanted you to know that I love you, and I am so glad you are part of my life" (or something along those lines...)
Blessed Christmas y'all!
p/s photos: Ueto Aya, Chen Kuang Yi, Zhou Wei Tong, Sarah Malakul Lane