If you yet haven’t heard about hygge, where have you been hiding?
Hygge (pronounced hoo-ga) is a Danish word that has no direct translation to English and yet everyone seems to be talking about it right now. Hygge has even crept into the Collins Dictionary as one of this year’s 10 new words (along with Brexit!)
Hygge is a concept deeply rooted in Danish culture. The word dates back to the 18th century and is linked to the English word hug. It loosely translates as ‘cosiness’.
I asked my Danish friend about it and she told me that the word conveys an intrinsic sense of being Danish. It’s about having a really nice time, feeling cosy and happy, either by yourself or with people you love, and embracing the small pleasures in life.
It is also about obtaining a work/life balance; not checking work emails after hours, spending quality time with your loved ones and being fully in the moment. And most importantly a sense of being kind to yourself.
More than ten books about hygge have been published in the UK this year. Advertisers have jumped on the bandwagon and are using hygge to market everything from furniture, home accessories, clothes and food. Cashmere, candles, cosy throws, good food and drink, and anything ‘scandi’ all embody hygge.
But why all the sudden interest in getting down and cosy like the the Danes???
Is it because in these times of uncertainty we are all trying to emulate the happiest nation in the world? It could be a backlash against the constant intrusion of social media. Or, fed up with FOMO, perhaps we are now preferring to stay at home more. Coincidentally JOMO (joy of missing out) is another new entry this year into the Collins Dictionary!!
Maybe it is simply just another new wellness trend, or worse, a smug lifestyle trend.
Whatever the reason for its popularity, I am embracing it.
2016 has been my year of hygge. I have had the opportunity to takes things at a slower pace, look after myself and spend more time with my family. I have allowed myself to indulge in long dog walks, home cooking, yoga, reading and trying out something new (Club Forty!) I have literally given myself a big hug this year…
As the weather is now turning truly wintry, I can’t think of anything better than lighting the fire, pouring a tasty glass of red and snuggling down with my babes.
What are your thoughts on hygge? As always, I’d love to hear your comments!