It's no wonder why Denmark has ranked consistently in the #1 or #2 spot for the country with the happiest people on earth. Despite a brutal winter with temperatures sometimes well below zero, snow, ice, ice winds and dark short days, Danes somehow have discovered the secret to happiness. And we wonder...is it hygge?
Hygge (pronounced hoo-gah) is not easily translated into English. However, the concept is an act, a feeling, of comfort, coziness, warmth, serenity.
Meik Wiking writes in his book, The Little Book of Hygge, "Hygge is about an atmosphere and an experience, rather than about things."
How do you build a hygge experience of your own?
1. Time. First, you have to prioritize it in your life. With the busyness of the American lifestyle, being still and not "doing" may seem odd at first. Keep going until you've mastered the art of lounging and relaxing.
2. Atmosphere and ambiance. Turn off the TV and turn on some music. Light some candles and turn down any harsh lighting. If you enjoy essential oils, diffuse a few or add a few drops (of pre-diluted oils) to pulse points on your wrist.
3. Here and now. Put the cell phone, laptop, ipad and ipod away since the TV is off and just enjoy being disconnected for awhile.
4. Indulge. Enjoy cake, cookies, chocolate, hot cocoa, mulled cider.
5. Comfort and warmth. This means soft blankets, pillows, cozy socks, big sweaters, and you curled up on a sofa.
6. Gratitude and Peace. Think about what you are grateful for today. Cultivate a sense of peace along with your gratitude. Let go of grudges, arguments, and bitter feelings. Being in that cozy moment with cider, chocolate, and music and you'll be ready to let go.
7. Enjoy your time. Read a book. Have a conversation with your loved ones. Invite friends and family over for a meal filled with laughter, warm food, and great stories.
Stop by The Healthy Grocer and let us help you plan your own hygge experience this winter. In fact, stop by the front of the store for Wiking's The Little Book of Hygge, flowering teas, essential oils, diffusers, salt lamps, speciality chocolates and more.