I’m of Norwegian, Swedish, and Danish descent, and no one was more surprised than I was to learn of a Scandinavian word, “hygge.” Suddenly, it’s all the rage with loads of articles and books — google it or do a search on Amazon and see what you get. I even did one of my Wellness Tips of the Day on it (see it here). So, what is it and how on earth do you pronounce it?
Loosely translated, it means “cozy.” And it’s pronounced, “hoo-geh” — my Norwegian sister-in-law, Turid, has a beautiful pronunciation but assures me that “hoo-geh” is acceptable. Hygge is a way of life — taking time to create an environment of coziness that is warm, inviting, and hospitable. It can be clothes:
Now, these all look wintery and Christmas-y, don’t they? While we naturally create cozy environments indoors when it’s cold and blustery outside, hygge can be created year-round, no matter the weather. Hygge is about spaces that say, “Come in and relax, you are welcome here.”
It’s about food and drink that say, “I care about you.”
It’s about garden spaces that say, “Come closer, and sit for a while.”
It’s about clothing that encourages you to be comfortable while you relax and enjoy time by yourself or with friends and family.
It’s about staying in the moment, unplugged, focused on the people you are with, creating a life you want to live and a home you want to come home to.
Doesn’t that sound lovely?