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What is Hygge and Why is it Trending?

Hygge, pronounced, HOO-gah is a Danish word that translates to coziness. But it’s more than just an adjective or a feeling, hygge involves things and feelings to create a lifestyle. The term started trending in the United States last year but Scandinavians have been incorporating hygge into their lives for years.

The feelings that you get from taking a break and truly enjoying your coffee, sipping hot chocolate next to a fireplace and soft blankets that make you want to cuddle up on the couch are all components of hygge. PureWow describes hygge as “just that sensation of feeling totally at home (even if you’re not at home).”

The philosophy behind hygge is to create an atmosphere that is free of stress and stressors. So it could mean cleaning up your place if the clutter is beginning to get overwhelming. Or it could mean adding some comfort, like fluffy cushions on a couch. Hygge is something that you can work towards achieving but don’t forget to stop and enjoy.

If you’re still curious about hygge, then you’re in luck because numerous books on the subject have been published in the last year that are devoted to acquiring a sense of hygge stateside, according to The New Yorker.

Winter is the most obvious time of year of hygge, but it seems that the Danes make it last year round. The Danish are known to be amongst the happiest people in the world, which could because they enjoy basic access to “free university education, social security, universal health care, efficient infrastructure, paid family leave, and at least a month of vacation a year.” With these essential needs met, Danes are free to focus on hygge and feelings of warmth and satisfaction.

Although hygge isn’t without some controversy as a definite first world issue, it can be nice to aspire to feelings of comfort if not total indulgence.

[Image via Shutterstock]

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