What is Hygge, and How Do You Pronounce It??

While Hygge is initially difficult to translate, once you get it, you get it.

The best way to explain the concept of Hygge is to let the Danish do it.  This is an excerpt from an article from Denmark.dk

A warm atmosphere

Hard to pronounce, hygge (“hooga”) is difficult to explain, too. In brief, hygge is about taking time away from the daily rush to be together with people you care about – or even by yourself – to relax and enjoy life’s quieter pleasures.

The word hygge dates back to around 1800, at least in the meaning it has today. However, various definitions of hygge can be traced back to the Middle Ages, where a similar Old Norse word meant “protected from the outside world.”

Hygge is often about informal time together with family or close friends. Typically, the setting is at home or another quiet location, or perhaps a picnic during the summer months. It usually involves sharing a meal and wine or beer, or hot chocolate and a bowl of candy if children are included. There is no agenda. You celebrate the small joys of life, or maybe discuss deeper topics. It is an opportunity to unwind and take things slow. 

It means something different to everyone

The beauty of Hygge is that it can mean something different to everyone.  Perhaps it is appreciating art with a friend.  Or sharing a meal with family.  Or enjoying the solitude of a relaxing fragrant bath.  It is about slowing down and enjoying the simple things in life. It is about being present in the moment.  It is about embracing all of the things that I think we most need in the world right now.

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