woman with a cosy blanket snuggled on her sofa reading a book with a hot drink

The hygge lifestyle

You may have heard of this Danish-born concept, but what exactly is it and how can you follow it? Keep scrolling for our guide to all things hygge.

First of all, what exactly does hygge mean?

Rather than being a specific thing, hygge (pronounced hoo-gah) refers to a feeling or quality of warmth, cosiness and general comfort1. It might be as unassuming as pulling on your comfiest clothes and curling up with a good book or it could involve setting out on a refreshing walk in the great outdoors with your best friends. Hygge is also about embracing and appreciating the simple things in life – think that first sip of a cup of coffee, the smell of your favourite candle or the feeling of sunshine warming your face2.

Why should I take up the hygge lifestyle?

Wondering what the benefits of hygge actually are and whether you should incorporate the concept into your life?

Here are a handful of reasons to embrace this Scandinavian practice3:

Hygge aids with relaxation - As hygge is all about promoting calm, it can be highly beneficial for people who are often tense or stressed out.

Hygge helps you sleep better – By feeling cosy and safe, both our mind and body are able to relax fully which can, in turn, improve our ability to fall asleep.

Hygge can strengthen relationships – While much of the hygge lifestyle focuses on solo activities, it’s also all about connectivity, togetherness and feeling more at home with those around us.

Hygge can make you feel more optimistic – When we’re at peace with our surroundings and fully able to be ourselves, we tend to feel more positive about our current situation and the future.

How to hygge at home

Whether you spend a lot of time indoors naturally or your currently on lockdown, there are several ways to tap into this cosy and comforting concept. Why not:

  1. Light some scented candles and turn off your main lights to bathe in their warm glow
  2. Read a book with a hot cup of tea beneath a fluffy blanket
  3. Cosy up on the sofa with your nearest and dearest to watch TV
  4. Redecorate your home in neutral tones and with personal items which are a particular comfort to you
  5. Have a casual game or movie night with friends
  6. Bundle up in a warm jumper and coat for a long walk
  7. Cook something delicious, whether that’s yummy baked goods or a dish you loved as a child
If you’re keen to know what doesn’t count as hygge, consider things like spending hours on social media, being unnecessarily anti-social or having lots of strict rules within your life all big no-nos4. Another beneficial way to support your wellbeing is to make sure your body is getting enough vitamins and minerals. If you think you could be deficient or simply in need of a boost of certain nutrients, why not consider incorporating a supplement into your daily routine? Advice is for information only and should not replace medical care. Please consult a doctor or healthcare professional before trying any remedies.

Last updated: 27 April 2020

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