Have you ever heard of hygge? No? Well I’m about to share something with you that might just change your life.
The Danish word hygge, roughly pronounced ‘hoo-gah’ is the art of being cosy and content. It’s appreciating the small things which enrich your life rather than the big over-the-top showy things which let’s be honest, don’t always give you the happiness they promise.
Let’s take buying a car for example. Yes it’s great to have the extra convenience and independence rather than relying on public transport and other people to get you from A to B but once that initial buzz wears off, it just moulds into part of your normal. You start looking to the next thing to get you excited, promising yourself that next time you’ll definitely be happy forever.
That’s the human way, and that’s one of the reasons that people struggle to hold on to that ‘happy’ feeling for long. Let’s be honest though. Being happy isn’t always about walking around with a big, stupid grin on your face. More than anything it’s about finding contentment in your daily life.
So What is Hygge?
That’s where hygge comes in. Hygge is built into Danish life and is almost impossible to translate properly. That first sip of a steaming hot coffee? That’s hygge. Sharing a good meal with family and friends? That’s hygge. Picnics in the park? Listening to the rain outside when you’re warm and safe inside? Candles and mulled wine at Christmas? Yep, you guessed it. It’s my new favourite thing.
But hygge is definitely not about being showy. It’s about living unpretentiously in the moment. So put that phone away and don’t you dare even think about opening Instagram!
Sometimes hygge can be simply sitting and doing absolutely nothing. It’s about recharging your batteries and appreciating what you have around you, and I happen to think that’s a great way to live. We can all learn from the Danes and try to get a little more hygge into our lives, right?
So when the next ‘list of happiest places in the world’ is published and Denmark sits proudly in the number 1 spot again, don’t be surprised. They know what life’s all about.