Hee-gee? Hig? Hi-gi? No matter how you pronounce it, this funny little Danish word has been on the lips of every chunky scarf-wearing, Acne bag-toting Millennial this side of Christmas. And you heard it here first: it’s here to stay.
Encapsulating all things cosy, comfy and downright joyful, the word ‘hygge’ may have no direct translation in English but the ethos certainly transcends borders. Deriving from the sixteenth-century Norwegian term ‘hugga’ (meaning ‘to comfort’) this tiny word represents a state of mindfulness; where gratitude, relaxation and indulgence is paramount. No wonder the Danes are obsessed.
If, for some reason, you’ve been living in a Netflix-induced bubble and haven’t stumbled across this divine Scandi concept, listen up: Hygge will change your life. One warming mug of glögg at a time.
1. Because it’s all about the finer things.
Forget gulping a stone-cold Starbucks on your crappy commute to work. Try taking the time to sip your (preferably hand brewed) morning coffee from a beautiful porcelain cup. A simple addition to your morning routine, it could mean the difference between an #FML day and an #OMFG! day.
2. Because: Food. More food. And oh yeah, FOOD.
Hygge-style food calls for scrumptious stews, smoked fish and meats and all the butter-slathered rye bread you can handle. Go healthy and devour some warming oatmeal for breakfast. Or forget the rules completely and indulge in crispy bacon, eggs and sausage. If the way to a hygge heart is through food, then sign us up.
3. Because intimacy is key.
With our friends, with our family, with our loved one, or with ourselves. Since the art of hygge ultimately comes down to ‘seeking contentment’, what better way to experience the feels than by surrounding yourself with those nearest and dearest? Grab your pals and organise a Fun Day Out to celebrate those cherished relationships.
4. Because it forces us to be present.
At its core, hygge is about taking pleasure in the small things and recognising when the ordinary is extraordinary. Though it sounds easy-peasy, the act of being present in our day to day lives can be as challenging as weening ourselves off Hobnobs and Game of Thrones. Who should we blame? Technology, obvs. Next time you’re standing in front of the majestic fjords of Iceland or the mesmerising glaciers in Norway, put down your Snapchat and take it all in. You’ll thank us for it.
5. Because your mind, body and soul will love you for it.
Exercise + fresh air = endorphins, non? Is it any wonder Denmark is regularly voted one of the happiest countries in the world? With more bikes than actual inhabitants, Copenhagen is a hub for happy hygge-loving locals. Do as the Danes do and get on yer’ bike for a ride. And when you’re sufficiently invigorated? Light a candle, kick your feet up and revel in the cosy comforts of home.
6. Because ‘farrrrshun, darling’.
Fact: The Danes know style. Perhaps it’s in their DNA; perhaps it’s in their über environmentally-friendly water. Either way, the whole minimalist-thing just works and should be adopted into your wardrobe STAT. Grab a beanie and some neutral-coloured apparel and start feeling those hygge fashion vibes.
7. Because it will attract awesome vibes.
Whoever said, ‘what goes around comes around’ was totally onto something (we’re looking at you, Justin Timberlake). By learning to embrace the notion of hygge and all its yummy-cosy-positive sentiments, you’ll be one step closer to achieving true happiness.
Oh, and by the way. It’s pronounced ‘hue-guh’.
To experience the hygge vibes for yourself, check out our awesome range of Scandi trips here.