The tactile sense

Posted: 20 May, 2016

By: Annemarie Lombard

Section: Corporate

Tactile sense

The TACTILE (touch) sense is a primary sense we use on a daily basis to process information from the environment. It is vital for communication, interaction and performance.

Receptors for the tactile system are located in the skin. It has therefore the widest receptor field of all the senses. We use touch to feel and discriminate our environment and to protect us from harm. When connecting with other people we enter each other’s “tactile space” for interaction.

Thresholds for touch (how much touch your brain can tolerate) are on a continuum:

On one end people have low thresholds for touch:

* they dislike and avoid touch from other people
* they tend to isolate themselves from others
* they are on “guard” with teamwork operations
* they need big/wide working spaces
* they perform poorly in open-plan office environments

On the other end people have high thresholds for touch:

* they enjoy touch and often will touch people when talking to them
* they enjoy working in close proximity with others
* they enjoy people and are usually sociable
* they contribute positively to teamwork functions

Sensory self-assessments will establish your tactile threshold and guide you towards using your environment to work and perform better. Creating the optimum workspace for you based on your sensory needs will make you work BETTER, HARDER AND SMARTER!!