Live Happier with Hygge: 30 Easy Ways

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What the heck is this ‘Hygge’ that everyone is talking about and why should you care?

Hygge is a Danish word meaning “to give courage, comfort, and joy”. 

It encompasses the idea of living mindfully, simply, and savoring happiness.

If you are searching for the good things in life: some tranquility, a sense of calmness to the hectic pace of your everyday life; then I hope you’ll stick around.We’ve got some great ideas to help you embrace Hygge.

Live Hygge to be Happier

Now before you click away thinking this is just another boring “list” post, adding more tasks to your already chaotic life, hang on OK?

This is not just some lifestyle trend. It’s a way of life the Danish people have perfected over thousands of years.

woman with pink scarf and small dog on her lap holding a white mug

From using bicycles, which are considered Hygge, to having cafes with Laundromats, Denmark surely knows how to create a feeling of coziness. Check out this awesome video by Visit Denmark that I absolutely adore!

This is not a ‘check the box’ exercise. I know you’ve got plenty of those going on, whether at work or home. Read on to learn about how the Danish concept of Hygge can truly improve your life. 

Find happiness with 30 Simple Ways to Live Hygge everyday! Images show Hygge for all seasons, Hygge Spring, Hygge Summer, Hygge Fall, Hygge Winter, Hygge Work, Hygge Decor

Be Cozy

Finish the project plan – Check.

Get to the gym three times a week – Check.

Fit in quality time with your sweetie – Check, Check.

Hygge is about feelings

From The Little Book of Hygge: Danish Secrets to Happy Living:

 “Hygge is about an atmosphere and the experience. It is not about things. It is about being with the people we love. A feeling we are safe that we are shielded from the world…to be able to let our guard down.”

Meik Wiking

So stay with me, read a little further, watch the video, and you will learn so much about Hygge. And even better, you will probably realize that you’ve been practicing Hygge all along, you just didn’t know it.

Like everything in life, embracing Hygge or finding time for more happiness is a journey. 

Wiking talks about the Five Dimensions of Hygge:

  • The Taste of Hygge
  • The Sound of Hygge
  • Smells Like Hygge
  • Feels Like Hygge
  • Looks Like Hygge

According to Wiking, Hygge is really all about feelings, and they say that “feels like Hygge” is the Sixth Sense of Hygge. So, while we can talk about candles, cozy shawls and specialty teas, they only serve to help us reach that “sixth sense”. Are you with me? Good.

If you are ready to jump in feet first then good for you! I really recommend this awesome Hygge Box to get your own cozy lifestyle delivered every month to your door. It’s like your own Hygge self care package, and is chock full of goodies, at a reasonable price too! First time subscribers to Cratejoy get huge discounts.

For me, I’m learning too as I go. So thanks so much for stopping by and I hope you really enjoy this post. 

Be sure to check out our articles on how to survive winter with Hygge, how to live Hygge in spring, and the great fun you can have with summer Hygge!

So again you may ask, what the heck is Hygge and why do you need it? Is it a drink? Some kind of Swedish massage? A fitness routine?

Well, actually no to all of the above.

woman's feet with pink socks, arms show a pink sweater with a pale blue mug, with text that says 30 simple ways to get your hygge on.

Erm… It’s all about getting cozy. You know, cozy? Danish Hygge is… well, there really isn’t a direct translation in English.

Hygge Living is About

  • Happiness
  • A more fulfilling life
  • Living more healthily
  • A more simple life

This post is a tutorial on how to be happy and fit Hygge into our lives for all seasons.

This Post About Hygge Life Includes:

  • A basic background of what it means to live Hygge – a Hygge 101 if you like.
  • You will read about many examples of Hygge and why you probably already live Hygge in your own life right now!
  • Some great books, resources, and home décor items to help you get your Hygge on.
  • A great list of 30 Simple Ways for you to live and feel the joy of Hygge throughout the seasons – yep, all year long.
  • Several products, hand chosen just for you, that may bring joy, cozy-ness and happiness to your life.

OK? Then let’s get started learning about one of the greatest nordic secrets.

Hygge 101

As a complete novice to this philosophy I’ll admit, this is what I think what living Hygge is…

Hygge or Hyggeligt to me means being in the present moment. With purpose.

It’s like these examples of simple living:

Feeling my dog’s heartbeat when he cuddles on my chest – Not absent mindedly petting him while I’m scrolling through social media.

Hygge is holding hands with my hubby while we watch our favorite team play hockey. (Go Leafs Go). It’s listening to a close friend tell you the same story again, but pretending you’re just hearing it for the first time.

Hygge is sitting by yourself, with a favorite cup of tea, and writing in your journal. Hygge is the perfect antidote to when you are feeling overwhelmed.

It’s the simple things that matter, and this Danish way of living truly helps you recognize that.

image shows woman with white socks on a bed of white sheets, pink blanket, holds a cup of black coffee and has a journal in front of her.

Being cozy on a lazy Saturday morning, enjoying a good book, and that second cup of coffee – that’s Hygge

Listening, really listening, without distraction to birdsong in the early hours of the morning while walking the dogs.

Or sitting at the window at night, with a nice cup of hot chocolate, marveling at the wondrous full moon. 

Recognizing that feeling of contentment, and truly feeling grateful for it. 

When we are at the trailer, and it’s summer and the night is full of stars, I get my Hygge on by laying back in a lounge chair and looking for the Big Dipper – And any other dippers I might find along the way. 

That’s how I live Hygge, and have a happy life.

What’s the hype about Hygge and why should you care?

Hygge is a state of mind. You don’t have to leave town. You don’t even need to leave your apartment! You just have to live well. 

An important part of Hygge is using the right lighting to induce a cozy feeling. So light some candles, get a soft blanket, and choose a nice, relaxing activity like reading a book or knitting. 

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to live Hygge either.

Hygge is enjoying that special living space that only you know about. Want to create a special cozy backyard decor? 

See our DIY Fairy Lights post!

Hosting a potluck, doing some baking, a cozy décor, and using things because they have intrinsic value – not being superficial.

four people dining outside and laughing, two men and two women, coloured lanterns overhead, cityscape in the background

Like all of the art on our walls, it makes me happy! It looks cluttered, but I couldn’t possibly part with one picture.

I think my blog is very Hygge. Tons of food, with discussions on self care, and tips to be better organized. Pie is definitely Hygge!

I challenge you not to feel happy when you’re presented with a piece of mouthwatering pie, like this Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie! Comfort food is one of life’s simple pleasures.

Your tummy will be happy with this amazing Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie! It’s got a splash of Grand Marnier in it too just to warm things up a bit.

chocolate chip cookie pie with bite removed, fork to the side and ice cream over all

While you typically see ‘living Hygge’ is very popular around Christmas time and during the winter, Hygge is all around us no matter what time of year it is. We just need to:

  • stop what we’re doing
  • unplug from our devices
  • be mindful
I think I’ve been searching for Hygge my whole life, I just didn’t know it.

I’ve researched many years, read so many books about living simply, mindfulness, gratitude, living fully, but I’ve only just recently found my coziness.

Like reading a romance novel on the sofa, snuggled under a soft and woolly throw or blanket.

How to Hygge

I really encourage you to get the delightful book called The Little Book of Hygge! It’s not only beautiful to look at and to read, it will become your own Hygge manifesto of sorts.

I’ve included a link here to my Pie Lady Bakes Shop on Amazon with some of my all-time favorite books, beautiful candles and cozy things to help you get your Hygge on.

winter scene looking out a window you can see a snowstorm with two white candle holders, lit candles inside, and wrapped in wire with wire handles on the window sill.
Winter Hygge is indoors or out but these deliciously fat white candles let you linger inside all cozy and warm and dream the day away.
Hygge is all about getting cozy and it’s not just lighting candles at home – It’s about sharing your glow and feeling your happiness, by putting candles in the window!

So while we might like candles in the winter to be all cozy and indoors, in the summertime Hygge is having a campfire or BBQ with your very dearest friends.

campfire in a metal truck tire ring, shows golden flames, with blurred out forest in the background

It’s when the neighbors drop by to get caught up with what’s been happening in your lives, talking about world events.

It’s going back in time and sharing funny stories with your closest friends. These are the things that bring joy and happiness to others, sometimes in a very small way will bring you Hygge and that makes sense doesn’t it?

Giving always makes you feel so much better than taking.

And when we’re at that campfire or potluck, or sitting around the table, I love to bring out one of my favorite recipes, like a freshly baked apple cobbler. I think sweets are completely Hygge!

Trade in your treadmill and get outdoors to enjoy nature, or perhaps even take an extra-long walk with the dog.

Hygge is going for a long walk and seeing the first signs of spring, watching those leaves budding and hearing the birds chirping after the long winter months. It’s all about the joy of what the change of seasons – whatever that might mean to you – bring into our lives. That’s the Hygge way.

Fall outdoor scene, shows woman walking in a dark blue coat, blue jeans, brown leather gloves and red shoulder bag with a handful of leaves, image doesn't show woman's head.
Walking amongst the autumn leaves, such a feeling of cozy contentment.

Fall Hygge and long walks in your local park or nearby woods are so refreshing. Taking in deep breaths of all the smells that fall brings, woodsmoke, fallen leaves, and that crisp fresh air.

In North America it’s all about being hopeful that the warmer and longer days will be here soon. But also knowing that the cooler weather, and longer nights mean it’s time to rest.

Time to Hygge

Ok, so you’re convinced! You’ve gathered up some pillows, a cozy blanket, some reading socks and great books. You are READY! You really want to get some of this HYGGE and get it now! I’m going to get my ‘Hygge’ on this weekend, and here is why you should too!

30 Simple Ways you can Feel the Happiness of Hygge All Year Long

Hygge Home and Décor

  1. Rustic candles in mason jars
  2. Create a Hygge Living Room with Chunky wool throws and afghans (Take up knitting?)
  3. Creamy white and neutral pillows piled on your bed to create a Hygge sanctuary
  4. Soft white candle pillars set around the house and in the windows – share the light!

Hygge at Work

  1. It’s pretty hard to cozy up a cubicle, but a soft shawl or sweater can help
  2. Bring in some favorite photos of family, friends, the dog, and trips you love
  3. Easy to care for plants like succulents bring some greenery and are very unassuming
  4. Organize a potluck for your team, celebrate a milestone, or have birthday months
  5. Make tea time an event every day, use a teapot and tray and include your cube mates with a plate of cookies

Spring Hygge

  1. Longer days bring the gloaming, that soft evening glow between day and night
  2. Strawberry Rhubarb Pie – a must for Spring!
  3. Organize family activities, cleaning up the yard, hiking, birdwatching
  4. Getting cozy, with the sunshine warming up the room, enjoying a cup of pu-erh tea with a great book.
  5. Visit your local Libraries to enjoy Hygge and get caught up on the latest bestsellers
  6. Have a baking day, solo or with friends and create cozy goodies like rice pudding, apple cobbler, coffee cake, and pie!
See our expanded list for Spring Hygge at 7 Simple Ways to Live Hygge in Spring and our 7 day Spring Hygge Challenge!

Summer Hygge

  1. Campfires, toasting marshmallows, and sing-alongs
  2. Potlucks and BBQs to celebrate milestones, national holidays like the Fourth of July or Canada Day
  3. A hammock underneath a huge shade tree, with a cool drink and a great book
  4. After working all afternoon doing yard work, a refreshing dip in the pool or lake nearby
  5. Ice cream cones on a hot day, when it melts so fast you can’t keep up
  6. Butter tarts with ooey gooey syrupy centers, running down your arm after the first bite.
  7. Catch fireflies at night with the kids and put them in jars.

Fall Hygge

  1. Light, warmth, and friendship – making life warm and cozy.
  2. Family Celebrations, like Thanksgiving
  3. Visiting the local orchards to pick the new crop of apples
  4. Turning those apples into delicious pies or muffins
  5. Turn on the lamps in the late afternoon to give your home a cozy glow
  6. Bright red rain boots make splashing in puddles so much more fun!
Check out Hygge Autumn for more great ideas!

Winter Hygge

  1. Chunky knit blankets and sweaters. Cozy socks in front of a roaring fire.
  2. Warm chocolate-y drinks mulled or spiced wine. Homemade cookies, muffins, or breads.
festive fireplace with decorated mantel, logs stacked to the left and a candle in the foreground
Infographic with text on top how to live hygge all year long, woman with white socks, holding coffee cup and book on a bed with shawl and white sheets, hygge home shows white candles and lavender, hygge at work shows a succulent, hygge spring with multi coloured tulips, hygge summer, shows sand castles and bare feet by the ocean, hygge fall shows an autumn country road in a forest, hygge winter, shows two pairs of feet in cozy socks in front of a fireplace.

It must be said that winter is the most Hygge time of year, especially in December.

Christmas holidays that include get-togethers in homes, local pubs, and cafes, with lots of laughing, warm drinks, and sweets –  It’s the small things.

You May Also like…

We’ve put together a delightful collection of Hygge gifts for you to share, or perhaps even gift to yourself!

A particular favorite sweet that the Danes love are Danish Pastries (surprise!)

Want more Hygge? Be sure to check out our other cozy posts…

If you enjoyed this post, and would like more Hygge Home Decor ideas you may also want to visit FTD by Design, to see their tips on how to Hygge your home. It’s a beautiful website!

So now you’re all set. You have a complete list of 30 ways on how to practice Hygge in your life, including recipes, cozy blankets and socks, fun outdoor activities, and lots of ideas to JUST BE.

Have a wonderful Hygge life.


Related: 7 Simple Ways to Live Hygge in Spring!

white candles with sprigs of lavender and bottom image is pink socks and woman's hand, white block on top with text that reads 30 simple ways to be happy with hygge all year long.

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