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Let’s start with a little visualization exercise. Picture it. You’re dressed in your warmest pyjamas. Your feet, in the softest socks, are nice and toasty. You’re lounging on the sofa underneath the most comfortable blanket. Your fur baby is resting on your lap. You’re sipping on the yummiest mug of hot chocolate. You’re reading your favourite book. The harsh cold from the day’s winter storm cannot reach you. You’re not worrying about the future or freaking out about the past. You’re feeling completely happy, safe and at peace in this very moment. Sounds like bliss, right? Well, when cozy meets contentment, you’ve got yourself some Hygge. But, how does one hygge?
What is Hygge?
Pronounced hoo-ga, according to The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking (CEO of the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen), hygge is the Danish philosophy of comfort, togetherness, and well-being.
Hygge is about finding joy and appreciation for the simple things in life. It’s about creating an atmosphere that feels safe, soothing, and comfortable.
And, during these cold winter months, hygge is a perfect way of practicing self-care.
So, how does one practice hygge?
For all of the helpful tips and suggestions, grab Meik Wiking’s awesome book. But, to get you started, here are a few tips to keep in mind about how to hygge and get your cozy on!
No. 01 | Create a calming space
What does a calming room look like to you? Lighting often plays a role. You can add soft lighting with a table or floor lamp to achieve a soothing atmosphere. Candles are another great way to add a sense of calm to your space. Light your favourite scented candle for an added warm and cozy ambiance. A scent like lavender, for instance, can enhance the calming feeling by helping you feel more relaxed.
What else comes to mind when you think of cozy? Well, fabric! And tons of it! And different textures. So, bring on your chunky blankets and comfy pillows.
No. 02 | Choose comfortable clothing
When you think of comfort, what are you wearing? Say it with me – soft and cozy loungewear! I mean, who doesn’t feel like they can conquer the world in their sweatpants!? So, what does one wear when one practices hygge? Pyjamas, warm socks, sweatshirts, sweatpants, and robes – oh my!
Just another reason to love your sweats : )
No. 03 | No distractions
Yes, you heard me! That means no phone or social media, or anything else that can distract you from being in the moment. Being present and aware of your senses – the touch of the soft throw, the smell of the baking cookies, the light of the flickering candle, the warmth of your socks – is all a part of the hygge experience.
It’s about time you literally stopped and smelled the roses! I mean it – get yourself some fresh flowers and take the time to smell them. When was the last time you did that? Fully immersed yourself in the present moment and took it all in, even for just a second?
No. 04 | Yes to comfort food!
Hygge is about giving yourself a break and enjoying the process – it’s okay to indulge and savour the moment. So, what does that mean? Well, it’s right in the title! Comfort food. Aka – a food that brings you comfort and joy by providing a nostalgic or sentimental feeling. It could be a food connected to your childhood or one that you love to cook. It could be home-cooked yummy stews, banana pancakes for breakfast, cheese pizza for dinner – even chocolate can make an appearance. Craving cake? Have fun baking your favourite and savouring a slice (or two!)
It’s all about guilt-free balance and taking this time to really enjoy that feeling of comfort that comes along with every bite.
No. 05 | Do something relaxing that brings you joy
This is you time – do something that you enjoy, something that soothes you. Grab your favourite book, binge-watch that Netflix series you’ve heard about, spend time with your loved one, or cuddle your fur baby. Make it a point to do something that brings you comfort and joy.
The next time you’re feeling overwhelmed, and need a breather, think h-y-g-g-e and take your self-care up a cozy notch. This hygge thing really does live up to all its hype. I mean, the Danes are the happiest people in the world for a reason! : ) For more cozy tips, pick up The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking.
How do you Hygge? What’s your favourite comfort food? How do you create a calming space? What’s your go-to comfy outfit? What’s your favourite way to relax? What’s your favourite cozy activity to do during the colder seasons? I want to hear it all – let me know in the comments section below!
Marla S. says
What a great word–hygge. It sounds like it has the same meaning as the Dutch word “gezellig.” When I went to school for several months in the Netherlands, that was the first word I learned. It felt like the perfect word to describe everything that I love.
By the way, your website is gorgeous!
Thanks so much, Marla! <3 I haven’t heard of “gezellig” yet but looking forward to checking it out! Isn’t it incredible how a word can elicit such a positive & powerful feeling? Love it!