Hygge in the new year

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Have you heard of the lovely Danish tradition called “hygge?” You may see images of cozy socks and aptly placed cappuccinos tagged with this word. It seems to be America's new exciting venture, just like #liveauthentic and #practicepresent. Not that I'm making fun in the slightest. I believe our endeavor to live more mindful and thankful lives is indeed a good one!

 As I ponder “cultivating hygge” I can’t help but notice all sorts of habits I’ve created that are in exact opposition to the things I want to cherish most. For instance, a slow, mindful morning brings me peace and clarity for the day. Being clean, getting time to look the way I want (sounds silly), truly sets my mood for a successful, productive workflow. My boys are loud, high energy, and curious. Bearing them in mind, I can’t help but think I’ve unfairly over-loaded on my expectations and under-delivered on my own ability to serve my position well. Put simply, I can’t have it all. 


My situation calls for change, for readiness, for patience. So, why on top of that, have I put other expectations that may demand the same energy? If I know I have two rowdy boys, maybe taking the rest of the day at ease makes more sense. Not over-scheduling, or planning elaborate amounts of work for myself means I can focus on my main priorities, the boys, and perhaps three top goals for the day. 


The more I read about “hygge” the less I think about candles and warm drinks. I’m beginning to see this idea of coziness and rest and community as simply living with your top values right where they should be, at the top. Not trickling down into the cracks between our more “important” errands, but becoming the errand themselves. I don’t think Marley from “A Christmas Carol” could have said it much better when he reprimanded Scrooge. “Business? Mankind should have been my business!” 


I'm a firm believer in twelve days of Christmas, so today is only day two and I've got margin to think about my plans. Of all the things I'd like to change, or habits I'd like to develop, loving is at the top. Why not simplify your master plan for 2018? Simply list the things or people who are most important to you and make them your daily errand. Let your list serve the business you truly want to be about. Get about your business, your true business. 

Taking a page from Jacob Marley as I plan for the new year. 


Written by, Emily Dean | Photography by, Hilary Hyland