Denmark is said to be the happiest country on Earth. That's down to one thing: hygge.
Hygge's more than just an idea; it's also part of Denmark's national identity. The word's many translations include: cosy, simple living; enjoyment of life's small pleasures; the warmth of good company; and the comfort of soothing things.
Pronounced "hoo-ga," hygge is a relaxed and stress-free mindset that values cherishing yourself; candlelight; celebrating experiences over possessions; and being kind to yourself; all while treasuring and fostering a sense of close community.
You know hygge when you feel it -- cuddled on the sofa with a loved one, or sharing a meal under dim light with the nearest and dearest of friends. Hygge is dappled sunlight filtering through your windows "just right" as you sip warm tea on a crisp fall morn. Hygge is grainy wood paneling and warm, woolen socks on a rug by a crackling fire.
I'm so glad there's a word for this life philosophy. Turns out hygge is everything I've ever sought or tried to build. It's also what I want more of, for myself and those I love. It's the simplest of things and the smallest of things, opening hearts and building love for each other, grateful for the gifts of this bountiful Earth.