On The Way To Simple Living: The Meaning of Hygge
Differently to houses, homes are a lot more than a compilation of bricks, concrete and wood. With time and effort, houses are filled with emotions, memories, and symbols that pulsate with joyful, peaceful and comforting energy. However, it’s far too often the case that the value and power of the home are forgotten due to the high-speed, stressful lifestyles many of us lead in our day-to-day.
This blog is being written in April 2020. It’s during a time where the entire world has, for the first time in years, been witness to a worldwide pause in efforts to combat a global pandemic. From having the freedom to commute to work, take the children to school, and practice social activities every day, we’ve all collectively assumed the responsible role to stay home and quarantine. This has meant that our homes have transformed into settings far beyond residential. They’ve become the place where we work, educate our children, relax, dine in, and overall, our corners of the world where we spend much of our time in. To keep it short and honest, we have to admit; this is the time where things can get very stressful, very messy, very quickly. Put in (ironically) simpler terms, it just becomes a complicated situation.
So, you may be wondering the following: How can you achieve simple living when everything around you seems to be so tangled?
We might have an idea.
This is where the Danish concept of hygge comes in. In this blog post, we’ll dig into the meaning of hygge, how to incorporate it into the home, and most importantly, how it works to encourage and generate the most authentic sense of well-being.
What’s the meaning of Hygge?
To start defining the meaning of hygge, we should start by its original site of creation - Denmark. Although there isn’t a direct translation, the definition of hygge is associated very closely with words like coziness, comfort, contentment, and conviviality.
At first glance, hygge might seem like one should go out and buy a bunch of scented candles, soft rugs, hot chocolate mugs, and fluffy pillows. Sure, buying these items can help towards creating a hygge-style home, but in reality, the meaning of hygge goes way beyond that.
The best way to describe hygge philosophy is to find contentment in life through simple living. The core substance of hygge lies in creating an environment that produces moments of pure joy, and comfort It’s about building a space that feels so special and relaxing to the point where you wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.
In even easier terms, hygge is all about living simply, being fully in the moment. Whether you’re spending time with yourself or with other people, what matters the most is that you spend your time mindfully and that you truly implement and prioritize the things that truly bring you joy into your life.
What does a hygge home look like?
Like we mentioned before, there isn’t really a ‘correct way to create hygge at home. However, it is true that within Danish culture, there seems to be a pattern of soft textures, candlelight evenings, and wooden elements inside the home. This makes perfect sense though; these items and substances are very closely connected with Danish culture, traditions, and surroundings.
So here’s, here is the real question: What components would you add to your hygge home?
Well, while you let us know in the comments below, here is how we like to hyggelig in our Australian home.
Australian Native Flowers
In Denmark, it’s pretty cold for at least 7 months of the year, so it’s become quite important to bring nature inside through natural elements. For example, having touches of stone and wood in furniture, or having several vases with flowers. In Australia, we’re lucky to have great weather; but having touches of nature inside your house simply adds a tinge of freshness and cleanliness. We love displaying waratahs, eucalyptus, and sturt’s desert roses just about everywhere - in the bathroom, kitchen, living room...they never fail to create that unique, relaxed feeling of Australian rustic life that makes us feel right at home!
Essential Oils and Diffusers
For us who do everything at home nowadays, we need to make sure that we stay grounded, focused and positive throughout the entire day. Not only does this make sure that your home stays light-hearted and enjoyable, but it this type of energy translates to the entire family.
Aromatherapy is an incredible tool in our journey to living simply, as it is incredibly impactful to our emotional health and wellbeing. Having an essential oils diffuser is a must in our understanding of simple living and finding contentment within our home. To us, our home is our own piece of the world that’s able to provide us and our family safety, education, traditions, and loving memories.
There are hundreds of different combinations of essential oil blends that you can place inside the diffuser with all kinds of effects. For example, if you’re trying to create a suitable environment for you to work from home and children to learn or do their homework, using a blend of essential oils for memory or concentration would be a great way to do it.
The great thing about essential oils is that they can be used in many different ways. For example, using essential oils in a roll on perfume can provide you with a more intense and direct experience of aromatherapy that’s easy to re-apply throughout the day. Mental Clarity, She is...You and Active Release are all great examples of roll on perfume oils that help strengthen our inner connections with our emotions and thoughts by creating moments of clarity, boosts of confidence and awakening of the senses. Essential oil mists also do the trick, offering the same aromatherapy benefits in a rather refreshing way.
Rediscover Food and Refreshments
Remember how excited you were to eat your favourite snack as a child? How lovely a cup of hot chocolate feels on a chilly evening? Hygge is all about being in the moment, and about making sure that whatever it is you are doing is bringing you joy and contentment.
Something as simple as food is immensely powerful in provoking a sense of peace, pleasure, and enjoyment. Food has the ability to bring families together, by either bonding over cooking, or by sharing common emotions and energy by relishing over something you all enjoy.
For us, practicing conscious eating while spending quality time with each other almost feels sacred. As we get to reconnect with ourselves and between us, we also use this time to disconnect from our worries It reminds us of how simple living is truly where we find fulfillment and contentment; and is still possible to recreate regardless of how difficult times can be. It’s these snapshots of ‘simple life’ that also keep us at ease, and are key reminders to help us overcome negative thoughts and concerns we might have.
As you can see, hygge means a lot more than having excellent taste in Scandinavian design. To truly experience the effects of wellness of hygge, it also means practicing mindfulness in our activities, and making your own space as unique and comforting to you as possible. We suggest that you curate it mindfully, and by remembering the value and truly gratifying feeling of living simply, and naturally.
Let us know in the comments below how you’re coping with spending so much time at home, and how you’re planning to apply some of this valuable philosophy into your home!