We believe that hygge can actually help ease the stress and uneasiness of the coronavirus situation and provide comfort, contentment and coziness during these long days spent at home.
Although this whole situation is very uhyggeligt (the antonym of hygge meaning scary & uncomfortable), with a bit of reframing it can actually be quite hyggelig. First and foremost, we hope that you and your families are healthy and well. And if that is the case, we hope that you are finding some hygge at home on these slow days spent at home.
Many of you may be loving the extra time you have on your hands, which finally allows you to slow down, wear sweat pants all day, catch up, and practice self-care. Those with school-aged children, may be finding this whole situation to be less than ideal but may also be laughing more than ever and connecting with your children on a deeper level. Not to mention, the wine. ;)
The world is at a halt and we are being asked to slow down and stay home. As we all hole up in our homes, now is a better time than ever to practice hygge - to take time to focus on our health & wellbeing, spend time in nature and connect on a deeper level with our partners and children.
Although this situation can be incredibly unnerving, stressful and overwhelming, take time to pause, be calm and practice self-care. Draw a bath, take a walk, play a game with the family, cook up a recipe that's been on your mind, read a book, or organize your closet. Make it a hygge time. Here are some ideas...
Make your home a hygge haven. Light candles throughout the day, pile the couch with pillows and blankets and put on your favorite music. If you have a fireplace, use it throughout the day. If you live in a warmer climate, open the windows and let the fresh breeze into your space. Before doing any of this, you may need to give your house a deep clean in order to feel completely at ease. If you are working from home, set up an office by a window or in a corner that has energizing morning light. If you have children, consider making a fort in the living room or in their room - create a special haven where your children can slow down and feel cozy. Take time to create a hygge nest for yourself and your family.
Embrace the fact that you will be home for multiple weeks and break out your comfiest clothing. We all know that we feel better when we look decent, so don't choose your old, overused loungewear but your comfortable yet presentable loungewear. This may be your favorite yoga pants and an oversized, nubby wool sweater or a long, breezy dress, or cashmere from head to toe. And don't forget your house slippers! Embrace the coziness...
Along with your body, let your mind relax and get comfy too. Now we have the space and time to let our minds be and not just be consumed by our day to day responsibilities. Take this time to let your mind breathe... get creative, write, meditate or just be.
According to Jessica Joelle Alexander, the author of The Danish Way of Parenting, practicing hygge with your family during this time can make your family stronger. She wrote in a recent article, "These are the times to see the family as a team and enjoy the opportunity for cozying around together. This “togetherness” is paramount and one of the key ways we can reframe this difficult time. You can actually become stronger as a family through this time and hygge is a big part of creating this. The key is being present, appreciating the little things and seeing the family as a team. You can even make the “routine” stuff nice when everyone is in it together. It’s not mindfulness it’s “we fulness” and this is very recharging for the heart and soul. That’s something we could all use in these times."
Make everyday moments with your children and family a bit more special by being present and intentional. Spend an hour or two cooking pancakes in the morning together or plan a hygge movie night where you pile the living room floor with pillows and hang twinkle lights. Of course there will be frustrating moments each day, but let these go and appreciate the fun moments in between - those are the moments that will be remembered.
Take time to slow down and do things for yourself that you've been neglecting. Take a long bath, give your body a scrub, shave your legs or beard, or take a break from makeup and let your skin breathe. Practice yoga or workout every morning and meditate before bed. Pick up a book you've been wanting to read or watch an entire television series. Right now, we can take a break from the demands of everyday life and spend time taking care of ourselves.
We've been noticing lots of little things that we don't normally have time to notice, like a sunspot that appears on the corner of our couch each morning and the birds that frequent the trees around our home. During this time, as we are all being asked to slow down, embrace this amazing opportunity to practice being present and appreciate the small things. Take it slow, don't put pressure on yourself to be anywhere or do anything (because you can't) and absorb the small joys of each day.
We hope that amongst all the commotion, you are able to slow down to find joy in life's everyday moments and hygge in each day.