Achieving Hygge

Achieving Hygge
Two pizza express pizzas

We’ve all been banging on about mindfulness and hygge, which appears to be the new it thing, for a bloody long time, but it seems like the true definition has been a little lost. The Instagram photos of fluffy blankets, candles and comforting Christmas films may fit that cosy vibe but I feel there’s a little more too it than physical snuggliness and some time to unwind.

Hygge has taken over the blogger world but if you’re not familiar with the term, it’s a Danish word which encompasses a whole load of feelings. It’s of being cosy, content, that safe feeling when you’re with loved ones, feeling soothed in the present moment and at peace. Whilst we’ve all probably felt this at one time or another, there’s no direct translation to English.

To me, true hygge is that feeling of contentment not just in yourself, but with the people around you. Hygge seems to put a word to a whole spectrum of emotions for me, but I feel like I achieve this mystical Danish feeling by spending time in really good company. It’s when you get chance to sit down and just take a step back and talk. To be with people who you can talk to about anything, put the world to rights with and trust in them to give you advice which is both informed and honest, with your best interests at heart. What could be more hygge than knowing that someone gets you, your interests, your beliefs, and also your fears and worries.

This week I feel as though I achieved this twice.

pizza express sharing doughballs

I went to the White Rose Shopping Centre just outside of Leeds this week to meet a few bloggers for their Christmas parade, to see all the Christmassy fun stuff they had going on and then head to Pizza Express for dinner. Unfortunately for me, I missed the parade as I was still at work, though apparently it was a bit like a scene from a Christmas film as members of the public danced along to the band and Santa (the real one apparently) was there. It was once I sat down for dinner with Kellie that I had a really unexpected evening of just contentment. Despite being in a bustling shopping centre, I felt that hygge feeling which comes from great company, comfortable surroundings and of course, carbs. As you can probably imagine, the White Rose has tonnes going on for Christmas, but if you are heading there, plan in some time to regroup, grab some food and just talk. Talk for hours, without a time limit and suddenly the world seems a little easier to contend with. Plus they’re opening late for Christmas so you can then shop afterwards when it’s a little quieter, if like me, you don’t do crowds.

avocado on toast

Brunch with my best friends from school also had me getting that hygge feeling this week too. We headed to Spring Espresso in York which is an independent cafe that we picked at random off a list of recommended places. I’m lucky to have three close friends from school which I still see and speak to regularly, despite not having lived in the same place as them for the last 6 years. And every time, we can pick up where we left off. These are the friends who make me a better person and it is so important when you’re in your 20s to have people around you who will both be your biggest support network and still tell you when you’re being a dick. Being with them is nostalgic, it makes me feel comforted and they make me feel like I can do anything. Also, Spring Espresso is really good for food, I’d definitely recommend it.

So that’s how I’ve been achieving hygge. Shout out to Kellie, Katie, Bethany, Jenna and Katie’s son Max (he may not even be one yet but cuddles with him definitely add to that cosy feeling), for being bloody brilliant.

1 comment

  1. Love this Lizi and agree.. I think it's as you say, just being content and present. Switching off, as such.
    I wouldn't say I'm practicing hygge, but I'm definitely being more mindful recently and meditation before bed and being aware of breathing is helping me a lot. :)