LOVE YOURSELF SOBER 6 WEEK COURSE

Get Sober Cosy

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‘Sanity is a cosy life.’ SUSAN SONTAG

Hygge, or the Danish art of happiness, hit the mainstream in 2018. Spoken aloud, this little word that sounds a bit like a hug – ‘hue-ga’ – means ‘a quality of cosiness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or wellbeing,’ and is regarded as a defining characteristic of Danish culture. According to Hyggehouse.com, another definition of hygge is, ‘an art of creating intimacy’, either with yourself, friends or your home. While there’s no one English word or simple definition to describe hygge, several can be used interchangeably, including cosiness, charm, happiness, contentedness, security, familiarity, comfort, reassurance, kinship and simplicity.

If hygge was a photo, it would be woolly socks, or a hot chocolate with a friend or loved one in front of a roaring fire. As the nights are starting to draw in, we need those treats, rewards and care to keep the spirits up so we don’t try to find comfort in booze.

This Nordic way of embracing the darker months has so much to teach us in the way of respecting the ebb of our lives as opposed to always expecting to be on the go or in ‘flow’, and about finding the joy in those darker times by nurturing ourselves with seasonal intent.

Getting some seasonal treats on board helps us ward off the temptation of the fantasy of mulled wine in front of the fire. We need to intentionally adopt new rituals and routines, and hygge is a great roadmap for autumn and winter habit hacks.

It’s been said that you can’t buy hygge. Many have waxed lyrical about its essence and grumbled about it becoming a lifestyle trend. However, according to Meik Weiking, Director at The Institute of Happiness in Copenhagen, you don’t need to be too worthy about it. Weiking suggests that some simple ways to begin to adopt hygge can be bought:

‘Light candles and eat more cakes,’ he says. We are SO down with that. He also says we need to wear tracky bottoms more often and stay in. Reader, we may marry him, in fact. If that all feels a bit Covid lockdown right now, just remember it’s a choice – it’s about balancing out periods of high socializing, busy work periods and over-exertion with downtime, cosiness and calm.

The Danes created hygge as a way to survive and thrive during the autumn and winter months and acknowledged that by simplifying and becoming present we can dramatically affect our emotional and mental wellbeing. By using simple practices, they found ways of bringing warmth and connection in a highly intentional way to lift the spirits. Hygge is not a big feasting high moment, a ‘go hard or go home’ party binge; it’s a daily sprinkling of warmth and care over our environment, our communities, our homes and the people we love, a symbol of gathering round a fire to huddle and be together. Simple rituals to attend with care to the everyday, like lighting a candle with each meal, or mindfully drinking your cinnamon latte in front of a fire, is embracing the spirit of hygge.

This Danish art of cultivating happiness and wellbeing calls attention to the small things that we too can bring our attention to in our environment. Hygge asks us to engage with, turn toward, accept and find joy in this activity. It also encourages a mindful approach to when we want to connect and also retreat. For those of us who are more introverted, hygge says ‘brunch with your bestie is good enough.’ We are allowed to go small, opt out and nurture ourselves in ways that feel cosy and cheerful.

 

HOW TO HYGGE

🍁 Drink hot chocolate.
🍁 Get cosy sock sand blankets.🍁 Decorate the inside with the outside.
🍁 Get out in nature,take hot chocolate to the woods.
🍁 Hang fairy lights and light candles.
🍁 Embrace coffee and brunch with friends.
🍁 Bake fresh bread.
 🍁Get your wellies and big scarves on and go for a stomp in the countryside.
🍁 Use essential oils such as frankincense or pine. 🍁 Make a movie den in the living room.
🍁 Eat soups and stews.

  FOR YOUR JOURNAL

🍁 What in my house can I add warmth to?

🍁 How can I be even a bit more cosy?

🍁 How could I make my environment feel more inviting?

 🍁 Who would I like to share coffee and cake with on a rainy day?

🍁 Where are my socks?

🍁 What clothes do I feel comfy in?

Love Kate x 

Excerpt from Love Your Sober Year by Kate Baily and Mandy Manners 2022. 

 

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