Many of you have been hearing about the new lifestyle trend “hygge” (pronounced hoo-ga) sweeping the nation. This booming trend in the US is really a way of life for the Danish and inherent in their culture. Statistically Denmark is voted one of the happiest countries in the world so perhaps there is something important to gain from studying their culture and this notion of hygge.
So what is hygge? Hygge cannot be translated into a single word, but it does represent a cozy state of being and enjoying the simple things in life. Turning off your phone and electronics and tuning into relationships, family, and friends. It is about taking your time and relishing in the moments. Candles (and lighting), throws, and pillows play an integral role in all things hygge. Laughter and indulgence is also very hyggeligt (i.e. hygge-like). Essentially, sit on the sofa with someone special, share some hot tea and warm cookies, and shroud yourself in a cozy blanket. Don’t forget the candles! Danes use more candles than anyone else in the world as living the hygge life is all 4 seasons, all the time- even candles at the office.
To live hygge is to incorporate pleasure and gratitude into our daily activities. We should strive for this sort of happiness and it seems there is no one better to learn from. Our culture encompasses working late, dieting, and posting blogs like this on the computer. So, in the spirit of hygge, I’m turning off this computer and going to cook a meal with my husband!