Thursday 1 December 2016

The Little Book Of Hygge

When I first heard the Danish word 'Hygge' a few weeks ago I had no idea what it meant or what this new craze was all about. I then observed a Twitter chat happening between two people who I follow and I saw the words 'cosiness' and 'happiness' used to describe it. I consequently became extremely interested in the subject and I made no hesitation in ordering 'The Little Book Of Hygge' by Meik Wiking. 
Anyone who knows me will already know that I am all about being cosy. I love spending time at home cuddled up with my husband and my pets. I have a huge collection of fleece blankets and different ones for different seasons. I'm reaching that stage in life where I own more 'indoor clothes' and pyjamas than I do going out clothes. I'm always buying candles and bits and pieces to make my home achieve high levels of cosiness. Even though we have central heating throughout our home we splashed out of a wood burner last year for our fire place, purely to achieve that unique and special feeling of snugness that a real fire provides. I think the word we used at the time in the showroom was 'Christmassy'...     

If you take a peek inside any book shop at the moment you are bound to see a few different books on the subject of 'Hygge' as it has quickly become the 'in thing' and lifestyle trend of 2016. 

I admit that I chose to buy this specific book purely from judging it by its beautiful cover. It looks festive, cheerful and yes, Christmassy. Out of all the books on Hygge this one definitely appealed to me the most. 

On a rainy Saturday afternoon a couple of weeks ago I set the scene at home, lit the fire and a few candles, and settled down on my favourite snuggle chair to start the book.  

When I started to read the book it quickly became apparent to me that Hygge (pronounced hue-gah in Danish) is so much more than a feeling of cosiness. It's certainly a big part of it, but there's a lot more to it than just that. There are many all encompassing factors that attribute to someone being able to achieve Hygge, and it's also a lot more social than I had first imagined. 

The Danes are said to be the happiest nation in the world and Meik Wiking, who has spent many years researching happiness, feels that this is vastly due to Hygge. 

Hygge is, in essence, enjoying life's simple pleasures and togetherness.  

It could be snuggling down with a good book and a blanket and surrounding yourself with candles. Or enjoying a lovely home cooked meal with your family. Fruit picking in the Summer or sitting beside an open fire in the Winter. Playing games with your loved ones or hosting a movie night. It can be anything that really makes you feel happy and connected to the world, whilst being present in the moment and away from anything stressful or distracting. 

Of course the most Hygge time of year is Christmas and I think that is the same in England as it is anywhere else. The book makes reference to spending time cooking and enjoying food in the company of friends along with simple joys like playing board games together. Everything about Hygge just shouts out Christmas to me but the interesting thing is that this is something the Danes are enjoying more than just once a year. It's become an integral part of their way of life.

If I am honest I would say that Hygge is something many of us naturally strive for and achieve already, perhaps without even knowing that it has now become so on trend. I've been enjoying feelings of happiness associated with cosiness for many years now, so much of it really isn't anything revolutionary or new to me. We all know what the things are that make us feel good and happy on the inside and that's not something anyone can really dictate to us. But I am sure that many of us spend more time focusing on the bad and not making the effort to make life as happy as it could be if we just tried that little bit harder.     

Where this book has really made me think deeper and consider my own lifestyle is where it draws upon our interaction with others and our relationships as such a key component of achieving happiness. 

As an introvert, with some anxiety issues, I naturally always prefer the idea of staying inside in my comfort zone opposed to putting myself out there into lots of social situations on a regular basis (I promise i'm not a lonely hermit!). I am also pretty happy either in my own company or that of my husband. But I think many of you will relate to the thoughts associated with going out socialising or hosting friends and the effort that can require. How many times do you cancel plans in favour of staying at home? I know I have done in the past and this has now more than ever made me question my own personality in respect to my happiness levels.

The sceptical side of me questions if all of this has suddenly become so popular just before Christmas as a ploy to get us spending more to buy all things Hygge - candles, wooly knits, cosy socks, books on Hygge...  

I did however really enjoy reading this book and it ironically made me feel like I was achieving some level of Hygge just by taking time out of my day to enjoy the simple life pleasure of reading (something I need to do more of). 

It's a quick and enjoyable read packed with elegant illustrations and images promoting wellbeing. In my mind anything that promotes self care, comfort and pleasure can only be a good thing. It gets you thinking about how to make life a happier and more content place all year round, and the little things you can do in order to feel more comfort and pleasure.    

I have always had a passion for Scandinavia and earlier this year, before the Hygge phenomenon took hold, I suggested to my husband that we add Copenhagen to our 2017 travel hit list. It's an area of Europe I definitely want to explore more of and since reading this book that idea has been fuelled even more so (although I now worry about the hordes of Hygge seekers who will have similar ideas to me). In any case i'm looking forward to booking our trip soon and experiencing the Danish way of life for myself!       


  1. Ooh, I definitely feel like this book is right up my alley. Adding it to my list right now!

  2. I am seeing this book everywhere, I think I am going to have to pick it up now having read this! Your posts are always so lovely, keep doing what you're doing pretty lady! x

  3. Really awesome blog.Your blog is involving the content about the book.The book is about happiness and it good to read.Your post is so good and love to read.Happy for sharing this nice post with us.As we all know that there are a lot of writing services are available to help us.Its good services ,that are custom essay writing services,custom essays and so on.They all are kept you in the safe zone in the case of your academic works.So please choose any one of the following to get good result.

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