Hygge For The Holidays


By Kate Kole

I first heard of Hygge a few months back and ever since learning of it, I’ve been captivated by the concept. I should mention right off the bat, the term is pronounced “hoo-guh” and perhaps if this is the first time you’re hearing of it, you’ll have better luck than I do in not calling it “hi-ghee” forever and ever, amen.

Regardless of my mispronunciation of the word, this Danish concept has inspired me to consider taking a new approach towards winter this year. Hopefully in doing so, it’ll move up from its consistent 4th place ranking in the seasons standings, and dare I dream, I might even start to like these cold, dark months.

While there isn’t an English word that directly corresponds with Hygge, its often likened to coziness and the term encourages developing a simple mindfulness around daily tasks so that we might appreciate them as opposed to stressfully plow through them.

Hygge House creator, Alex Beauchamp, describes the act of Hygge as this:

By creating simple rituals without effort {such as brewing real tea with a little china cup every evening to stopping at the flower shop every week} the Danes see both the domestic and personal life as an art form and not every drudgery to get away from. Hygge is about being present and recognizing (and enjoying) the moment.

If by this point, you’re basically picturing Cameron Diaz in the movie, The Holiday, drinking good wine and eating delicious food while wearing the warmest sweaters known to womankind in a charming countryside home, join the club. And doesn’t that sound all kinds of amazing?

While I can’t simply uproot my life and trade places with Kate Winslet over Christmastime, I do think there’s something to be said for creating daily and weekly practices to up my current comfort and coziness factor.

So, here’s what I’m mapping out to introduce the concept of Hygge into my home: I’m making lots of warm crockpot meals and following them up with homemade hot cocoa, cider, tea, and wine. I’m stocking up on my favorite winter essentials of fleece socks, flannel pants, warm slippers, and oversized sweatshirts. And while I’m at it, I’m loading up my bookshelves and playlists, too. I’m taking the time for more weekend naps, going to bed when I’m tired, lighting candles with my favorite scent, playing card games with my husband, snuggling with my dogs, and staring at the white lights on my Christmas tree.

My plan isn’t to ditch the things I need to do in my daily life, rather, I’m aiming to unload the excess. In exchange for having it all and doing it all, I’m seeing if I can incorporate The Everyday Minimalist mentality of “living with less, but only with the best” into areas of my life that extend beyond my cabinets and closets. I’m turning the extra energy and time I have towards creating connection in the relationships I cherish and the moments I love most.

I’m welcoming this season for what it offers: an opportunity to slow down, be still, unplug, and unwind. I’ll see if I can calm this crazy body and mind of mine with a little more yoga, a lot more meditation, and an appreciation for the simpler things in life.

I’m hoping that through my Hygge inspired journey I’ll relearn and remember, that life isn’t something to rush through at all, and perhaps, neither is winter. I’ll do my best to hunker down and warm up and maybe in doing so, I’ll come to know the joy of settling in and truly embracing this holiday season.

{featured image via pexels}

5 thoughts on “Hygge For The Holidays

  1. Maja Harder says:

    This is interesting, being danish, that Hygge has become so “trendy” here in the UK. But I love it! And I have for a long time struggled with how to translate the word, when explaining how I feel in certain situation 🙂 Now I can just use the actual word 😉


  2. ccrainbowflower says:

    I keep pronouncing it wrong too as I didn’t know how to pronounce it properly at first! I think we have all been doing a little of hygge before we had this word for it. I love being cosy in winter, wrapping up warm, lighting candles and having something warm to drink. It’s a lovely reminder however to slow down from chaotic life, switch off mobiles and reconnect with loved ones something we should all try and do 😊


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