Pronounced 'hoo-guh', the Danish concept of coziness has gained a lot of steam in recent years, though it's been a long-standing practice in Denmark and surrounding areas. I first learned of hygge through reading about it and slowly started to look into it further because it struck a cord with me.
Roughly translated, hygge means a certain quality of coziness and a feeling of contentment or well-being. As I learned more about hygge and Danish practices, I started to see a remarkable difference between their way of life and ours. What I noticed most was how much slower their general pace of living appears to be compared to ours, here in the western part of the world. I myself was guilty of multitasking constantly, rushing through everything and being a bit of a workaholic, honestly. Being diagnosed with Fibromyalgia forced me to slow down and I found a feeling of home and peace in becoming more hyggeligt.
I read many books about hygge, lagom (loosely translated, means 'not too much, not too little') and fika (translates to taking a break with something indulgent), all of which are Scandinavian and Danish concepts, and found myself becoming more and more calm, rested and relaxed. I recognized that the life I'd been leading, though once suited for me, was no longer what I wanted. That's when I purchased this little coffee house and new that I would want people to come enjoy and few hyggeligt moments right here in my cozy second home.
Essentially, hygge encourages us to enjoy cozy moments, whether alone or with loved ones. It's a mindset that goes well with that of mindfulness, which is of Buddhist influence. Generally speaking, people are overworked, stressed and tired. We can all benefit from slowing down and enjoying the little things.
Of course, to become more hyggeligt doesn't mean you have to quit your job, sell you house and move to Denmark. My hope is that I can have a space where folks can feel relaxed and encouraged to slow down for even just a little while and enjoy the moment. Not only is that beneficial to mental health, but also to physical health and general well-being. And I find that it's best done over a delicious cup of espresso with a loved one.