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Health

How Much Hygge Is In Your Life?

It's not a trend, it's a lifestyle.

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If you've ever wondered why Denmark is consistently ranked among the top 10 happiest countries, it might be explained, in part, by hygge.

NBC / Via giphy.com

Hygge (pronounced hoo-guh) is a way of life that goes back hundreds of years and is central to Danish culture — and it's something other countries in the West have been trying to catch on to recently.

Simply put, hygge emphasizes relaxation, coziness, being present, and creating and feeling like we're in a safe space — one where we can do the things we enjoy with (or without) the people we're closest to. And who doesn't want more of that in their life?! It can refer to a moment in time, a single experience, or a general state of being in your everyday life.

Below, we've compiled a list of hyggelig (the adjective form) things from The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking. Some of them might already be part of your life, while some might inspire you to add more hygge to it.

  1. How much hygge is in  your life?  
    petrunjela / gettyimages.com
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    You use candles to light up your room.
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    You use candles to light up several rooms in your home.
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    When you do use electricity, you usually use small lamps, rather than a bright ceiling lamp, to create little caves of light around the room.
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    You stay off your phone as much as possible.
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    You regularly take time away from emails.
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    You leave work on time, and very rarely stay late (work-life balance is very hygge).
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    You surround yourself with greenery at work (or wherever you spend lots of time).
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    You regularly treat yo'self to chocolate or candies...
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    Or cake...
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    Or pastries. Mmm...
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    Heck, sometimes you'll bake the cake or pastries yourself.
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    You sometimes bring what you've baked to work so others can enjoy your cake chef mastery.
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    You organize potlucks every once in awhile (whether that's at work, at home, in the park, etc.)
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    You take your time preparing meals, whether that's by carefully sourcing the ingredients or cooking slowly.
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    You regularly enjoy meals with friends
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    Or even better, you make a meal together so that everyone's contributing something — much hyggelig.
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    You've started a cooking club, or another club that helps you and your friends bond over activities.
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    Or maybe you're part of a tradition with friends or family, like movie nights.
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    You love the feeling of a hot drink in your hands, whether that's coffee, hot cocoa, tea, etc., and you take your time drinking it.
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    You usually consume said drink out of a ceramic mug, rather than paper or styrofoam.
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    You prepare hot drinks on your own, making the whole experience just a bit more special.
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    You have a small group of close friends (about 2-4 people) who can share their thoughts and emotions, and support each other equally.
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    You play board games (or any games, really) with your friends or family.
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    You own and wear a scarf...
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    And it's actually HUGE.
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    You wear a lot of black on black on black, especially during the winter.
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    You wear knitted pieces, like hats and sweaters and cardigans.
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    You layer up, so that if it gets cold you're ready, and if it gets hot, YOU'RE READY.
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    You like to wear wool socks when it's a bit cold out.
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    You wear soft, comfortable pajamas when you're home...
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    And maybe even some furry slippers (or at least something equally comfy).
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    You knit on occasion — for that safe, grandma vibe.
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    Your hairstyle is super casual, aka not styled at all.
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    You have a comfy place in your home that's literally set up just so you can cuddle up in a blanket with a cup of tea (that's called a hyggekrog).
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    You have a fireplace in your hyggekrog, AND you actually use it.
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    You've retired to your hyggekrog when the weather outside was particularly gross.
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    You and your partner ~Netflix and chill~ sometimes (and, like, actually watch Netflix).
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    You have lots of blankets, pillows, and other cushions to keep you cozy and warm...
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    And all of them have different textures (like maybe one is fleece, while another is canvas).
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    You surround yourself with (or at least have a few) things made of wood, like the floor, chairs, furniture, etc.
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    You own vintage furniture.
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    You read (books, poems, letters from others, etc.) to pass the time...
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    Or watch your favorite TV shows or movies...
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    Or listen to your favorite music.
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    You regularly get out for some quality time with nature, whether that's in your garden, a park, the woods, etc.
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    You picnic with friends in these natural areas. (Maybe they're even potlucks — so hyggelig.)
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    If you own a grill, you have BBQs in the summer.
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    You like to play field games, like croquet or badminton.
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    You're part of a community garden.
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    You ride a bicycle not just for health reasons.
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    You have a to-go bag (emergency hygge bag) ready with essentials, like chocolate, a notebook or paper and a pen, tea, or anything else that will help you feel calm and safe when you need to.
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    You veg out on a Sunday, because you deserve it dagnabbit.
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    You regularly take note of what you're thankful for.
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