Pronunced “hue-guh,” hygge is something I wrote about in a previous post. It’s a Danish tradition which encourages the ultimate laziness and relaxation, essentially resulting in self-love and time for reflection.
As promised, I spent the week practicing hygge for an hour or three whenever I got the chance, which was usually my evenings. I played video games, made some fires, brewed chai tea, wore my comfiest of pj’s, bundled up in my blankets, lit my candles, baked, worked on slow cooking meals, and tried my hardest to not stress or think about the things I wasn’t doing.
I have to admit, the fact that it was Christmas week helped a lot! I had that Christmas spirit to keep me happy, and anytime I even started stressing or thinking ahead about things that aren’t important right away, I just told myself “it’s Christmas week, it’s Christmas time, I don’t need to worry about this until Tuesday!”
This actually put things into perspective for me. Too many times before, I did everything for hygge perfectly, without even knowing it, but I failed at keeping my thoughts in check. Now I realize that all I need to do is say “I can’t think about this now, this is my time, I don’t need to worry about this until tomorrow!”
We live in a culture where hard work is expected and rewarded. The busier you are, the more “successful” you are. When in reality, life isn’t about how much time you don’t have. It’s about the balance of time spent working vs. actually living. Some people thrive on career success and sacrifice their whole lives, every other aspect, like love and friendship. Others, such as myself, care more about life itself and those around us, our down time and what we do and learn from it. A career is just something you do to earn money to support what you want to do.
There is no wrong way, or right way about it, it’s simply… what works for you. And regardless of what you value most, hygge is a good habit to implement whenever you reasonably can. It reminds you that no matter how much you have going on, you’re still human, and you still have a limit. Self-love is important, otherwise you run yourself into the ground. And as a vegan trying to do better for the world, and its adorable animals, you can’t afford to lose yourself while on your lifelong mission!
So, my verdict: if you haven’t given hygge a chance, try it out. See what happens. It’s super easy, it’s fun, and more importantly, it can be done at any time of day, right from the comfort of your own home. No need to spend any money, no need to organize anything. It’s just about tuning out the noise and being cozy.
Best of luck!