Arts & Culture Commentary

It’s Gonna Be Hygge

hygge-2By Mary Smith

No, that wasn’t a typo in the title. Hygge, pronounced “hoo-ga”, is a Danish lifestyle that emphasizes comfort and simplicity. I don’t know about you, but I think the Danish are onto something. With Denmark’s long winter months and awful weather, the Danes were forced to adapt to quiet nights (and lack of entertainment) and have since adopted “hygge”.

So what in the world is hygge? What could it possibly have to do with my life as a student? Well, everything you declare “aesthetic” or the rooms you reblog on Tumblr are hygge. Sitting in the cafeteria, laughing with your friends, and eating your favorite snack is hygge. Spending a weekend night under the stars by a fire is hygge. Basically, anything that involves food, fun, and socializing is hygge. Another term used to describe this comfort is “hyggeligt”, which is an adjective for experiences like the ones mentioned previously.

 I am always reading Tumblr and Facebook posts about the advantages of living in the United Kingdom, and in my opinion, we have a chance to bring some of their ideas to our own homes. “But I already do fun things,” You’re probably saying, as you scroll through this article on your phone, “and there is nothing here that I don’t already do.” What if putting your phone down and spending a good hour with your family is hygge? They might appreciate getting to see you outside of your room for once.

Maybe, if you aren’t willing to sacrifice energy for social interaction, you can change your environment into something hygge. Put up some Christmas lights, snuggle with some blankets, and take a nice long nap.  The Danish don’t believe in dieting or being lonely, so you shouldn’t either. Invest in a candle, or maybe just a simple chocolate bar. You deserve to live hygge.

Even though the word “hygge” doesn’t have a clear meaning in other languages, the ideas that it inspires are easy to follow and incorporate into everyday life. Besides that, I’d much rather hear “hygge” for a couple months in the hallways than “lit”, which I have a habit of using on an hourly basis. I think everyone would agree: if we start living hygge, it’s gonna be hygge.

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