Life made simple

Hygge. The feel-good philosophy from Denmark.


Before we unpack the meaning of hygge, life and the universe, a quick question: did you know that foefie slide finally made it into the Oxford English dictionary in 2016? So did scrumdiddlyumptious, clickbait and YOLO. You do know what those words mean, don’t you? Of course you do.

That said, we need to announce that last year, Oxford Dictionaries shortlisted hygge as one of their Words of the Year. Hygge? It’s Danish, and it’s pronounced “hue-gah.”

What does it mean and why do we love this uniquely Danish concept? The concept is defined by Oxford as … “a quality of cosiness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being.”

In Denmark, where winter nights are long and cold, hygge is all about warmth, comfort and simplicity. It’s about slowing down and enjoying the company of family or a few friends.

Louisa Thomsen Brits, who wrote The Book of Hygge: The Danish Art of Contentment, Comfort, and Connection, says hygge is “a quality of presence and an experience of belonging and togetherness.” Hygge means feeling warm, safe, comforted, and sheltered.

Hygge anchors and affirms us, gives us courage and consolation.

It’s all the things that made you feel safe and comforted as a child. We think it’s something worth practicing every day. Unplugging from the craziness of life, and remembering who and what matters.

How to live with more of it in your life?

Appreciate the small things. Be mindful of everyday comforts: a cup of tea, a warm bath, a crackling fire, a knitted blanket. Bring calmness and simplicity into your life. Try lighting a candle for a quiet dinner, watching the sun rise, or taking a fresh loaf of bread from the oven. Things that cost little, but count a lot. The days are getting shorter. It’s time to make your home cosier, and bring some hygge into your life.

For ultimate hygge, cook up a steaming chicken soup to share with a friend or two, around a fireplace.


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