Some of us feel the crisp and clean coolness of autumn and winter and find it wonderful as the shorter days swirl around us. Others find the days so dark and short and yearn for bright springtime days again. Either way, the winter can feel long, and those cold days can leave more than our fingers and toes cold. Embracing winter can be a challenge for a lot of us, but it’s much easier to enjoy this season than you think with a little bit of Hygge.
This Danish way of living welcomes slower, quieter and more mindful days. It is less about hibernating away for the winter and more about creating comfort and togetherness, which makes it perfect for those days when curling up in front of the fire with a good book and a cup of cacao is called for. It is also about making that cosy time sacred and preferably sharing it with others. And in winter, we crave this comforting warmth more than ever.
How can we embrace Hygge this winter?
Create Secure Spaces
Hygge is firstly about creating safe and comfortable spaces from ambient aromas to cosy comforts, and secondly, about sharing that space with our loved ones. Creating these spaces is about building security in where we are. The nights have gathered in, and many of us can feel a lull in our mood as winter takes hold. Hygge shifts our response to these winter nights as we come together with friends. This boosts not only our mood but also our comfort levels. It’s almost like a refuge in many ways. Look around. How can you adapt your space to create a feeling of Hygge?
Simple! Stock up on tealights, turn on the diffuser with soothing scents, and fill up the fridge!
Layer up the textures in your space by adding extra pillows, fluffy blankets, plush rugs, comfy cushions, or low chairs. Then, take advantage of the cool nights and get toasty around a warm fire with your favourite blanket (we all have one!) And remember, wearing that pair of joggers you wouldn’t dare be seen in outside the front door is the epitome of Hygge. Absolute comfort!
Create zones of light in your Hyggelig spaces by using candles, fairy lights, and the soft glow of fires. Think about layering your lighting with dim and soothing light to encourage a calm and tranquil atmosphere. Anything that creates a warm, cosy, comfortable, and relaxed living space is Hygge.
Hygge is about filling your space with the comfort of what you love. If you’re a reader, pile those books high. An avid artist? Fill your space with your work, watercolours and brushes and showcase your paintings throughout your home. By keeping our hobbies, dreams, and desires close by, we fill the space within our homes and the space in our heads with the things we love, which encourages contentment and happiness. Hygge is about exploring everything you enjoy and how you can share that passion with others.
Feeling connected with others enhances our wellbeing. It gives meaning and purpose to our lives. Not only that, but our social connections can reduce stress and even boost our immune system. It’s one very important reason we surround ourselves with those we love, respect, and admire. There is no space for toxic or strained friendships in Hygge!
Hygge calls for creating these safe and cosy spaces and gathering our friends and loved ones together to share that space and the comforting feelings it encapsulates. It’s a great excuse to set up a games night with your friends or call everyone around for some tasty bites.
To make these gatherings work, Hygge insists that there is no drama, no single person is centre stage, and stress is not invited. Instead, make it a pleasurable, in the moment experience shared with your nearest and dearest, who all feel comfortable to truly be themselves. Hygge is a salute to being yourself and being real.
Indulge in Rituals
While Hygge calls for sharing your space with friends, we can indulge in some Hygge rituals alone this winter. The idea of using Hygge as part of self-care is an important one because it asks of us to slow down, be mindful and care for ourselves, which, as we know as Mama, is not always an easy thing to do. But Hygge does not have to take up excessive amounts of time but rather moments that can lift and fill us before carrying on with our day. This winter, why not embrace some of these Hygge rituals:
Stay in Bed – Take an extra hour in bed with a hot cup of tea or cacao and read the morning papers while your other half takes the reigns with the kids. Snuggle up in blankets, ignore your phone, and relax.
Light a Fire – With central heating, many of us neglect our open fire or stove. Huddle up around a warm fire this winter with a good book (remember to call the chimney sweep in first!)
Frame those Photos – Our lives don’t often come out of our camera reel on our phones. Spend an afternoon printing and sorting family photos, frame them, and hang them in a special Hygge moment.
Create a Spa – Take out the essential oils, the bubble bath, and run the hot water. A fluffy bath towel, scented candles, and a long soak is one of those absolute, solo, me-time rituals.
Homemade Hygge – Arts and crafts are great with the kids but for a personal Hygge moment minus the chaotically tipped over glitter, find time for yourself to indulge in a bit of crafting by yourself. From drawing to making festive decorations, there are plenty of Hygge craft ideas.