Have you ever had a wonderful night sitting by the fire with a glass of cocoa, enjoying the company of your loved ones, and just thought, “This is the life”? Well, that, my friend, is hygge. Have you woken up on a chilly morning, lit a candle, wrapped yourself in a blanket, and read a book? Hygge again. Escaped a stormy night by sitting around the dinner table discussing current events with friends? That’s hygge, baby.
Hygge, pronounced “HOO-gah,” is a Scandinavian way of life that celebrates coziness, shared meals, and companionable interactions with loved ones. Emphasizing warmth, kinship, and an appreciation for the little things, hygge is a perspective on life that started in Denmark and has contributed to the nation’s consistently high happiness ratings. Now, in times of stress and unrest, more Americans are turning to hygge as a way to find happiness from within.
Many see hygge as an excellent form of self-care, especially during seasons when weather-related depression runs high. By embracing the indoors, welcoming others into your home, and taking plenty of time to treat yourself to little luxuries, hygge is the ideal way to combat seasonal affective disorder.
The search term “hygge” has skyrocketed in popularity on Pinterest, and the inspirational social networking site is embracing the concept wholeheartedly. The Pinterest team even decided to celebrate the “old Danish concept of embracing the cold months, living cosily and reveling in the joys of warm cocoa, soft blankets and the company of great friends” with a board called Teach Me How to Hygge, which captures the cozy joys of the hygge lifestyle.
While high season for hygge is Winter, the Danish tourism board assures us that it can be experienced year round. If you want to hygge-ify your home, here are some ways to incorporate the peaceful Nordic lifestyle into your own everyday habits.