What if I told you that those winter blues could be remedied by this one weird little word???
And there’s no catch…nothing to buy…no gadget, drug, or supplement.
Don’t believe me? Keep reading.
Approximately 4-6% of the U.S. population suffers from what has come to be known as Seasonal Affective Disorder, with an addition 10-20% who may experience milder cases of SAD.
According to familydoctor.org, the majority of cases are found in the Northernmost portion of the United States. This is attributed to the harsher winters and further placement from the equator.
That all sounds pretty kosher, right?
Well, here’s some more data for you.
This is a snapshot of the top-ranked happiest countries in the world from the 2015 World Happiness Report.
These are the four HAPPIEST PLACES ON EARTH.
And do you know what these four countries have in common?
Well, in case you are a little rusty on your world geography, let me tell you.
Every single one of these countries is FURTHER NORTH than any point in the United States, They also have LONGER, HARSHER WINTERS and SHORTER AMOUNTS OF DAYLIGHT with
As a super chilly cherry on top, some parts of these “happiest” countries also have an atrocity called, “Polar Night” where the darkness lasts for more than 24 hours!
So what the heck gives?
Why are these countries consistently happier than the rest regardless of being plagued with the things that are attributed to causing Seasonal Affective Disorder here in the U.S.?
I’ll tell you why…
Hygge, pronounced “HUE-
It can be used as pretty much any part of speech and is basically the act of enjoying the good things in life with good people.
Hygge is associated with relaxation, indulgence, and gratitude. You know…those things that Americans are
When I came across the concept of
hygge, I knew that I had to share it because it is so “ loveYOUmore.”
Thomsen Brits, author of The Danish Art of Contentment, Comfort & Connection, calls it “a practical way of creating
If you’ve been around
Hygge is that magical “cup-filling” concept that I’m always talking about.
It’s self-care in its purest form.
It’s the savoring of the seemingly small things that come together to form a happy life.
In Denmark, doctors actually prescribe “
With that in mind, I thought
So here’s your RX:
1. GET COMFY.
Want to know more about the
- Big sweaters & cardigans, like this one.
- Comfy pants or “
hyggebuksers,” like these, which are my absolute favorite!
- Wooly socks, like these.
Whatever it is that gives you that feeling of coziness…that
2. GET COZY.
Grab a really nice blanket. You know the one I’m talking about…It’s the one you reach for when you’re ready to take a long afternoon nap. This is the one I use. You can also grab your favorite person because favorite people are totally
3. GET LIT.
Start a warm fire and let it feed your soul.
We’ve had a fireplace for about 6 years now and I never want to move to a house without one again. Sitting in a cozy room with a warm drink in hand while watching the flames…There’s just something magical…something so
Now, you may not have a fireplace in your home, but that doesn’t mean you’re out of luck. Gather some of your favorite candles and create some
It is more than just the feeling of the radiant heat. It is the atmosphere that the lighting causes.
With that in mind, try avoiding your overhead lights. Use lamps or sconces or lots of candles to create a similar effect.
4. GRAB A CUPPA.
Now, I’ll be honest, I am NOT an outdoor-in-the-winter kinda gal. But one of my VERY FAVORITE times of year is when the snow is falling and I’m inside, near the fire with a nice cup of hot tea in my hand.
I have a great little collection of cutesy mugs to choose from, and every single one of them makes my life a little more
So grab your favorite mug, and savor the moment. That’s
5. GET UNPLUGGED.
Sure, you can experience
And our smartphones have the (un)magical way of numbing us to what’s actually happening (read more about that here), so if you want to really get
According to the
If you are feeling SAD, invite some of your favorite humans for an evening of connection. Bustin’ out the board games and good conversation as a sure-fire way to increase your
7. GET MORE GOODNESS AROUND YOU.
One thing is for sure. You can’t
When I first discovered the
I was all like, “Matt, guess what?! I just learned about the coolest thing…”
As I told him of the great
“This is about the furthest thing from
Yep, you can’t benefit from
So along with all the other things that we’ve talked about, soft lights and cozy clothes, preparing your environment with more “goodness” and less chaos is essential to creating
Now, don’t get me wrong, you don’t have to have an HGTV-sized remodeling budget to live a
Hygge is more than just great lighting, pretty furnishings, and warm sweaters.
It is the understanding and embracing of the importance of simplicity…the value of slowing down and savoring moments in time.
So, grab a mug and your favorite snuggler. Then sit back and take this prescription to heart.
Want to spread the