Getting Hygge With It.
Scandinavians are statistically among the happiest people in the world!
Seriously? Even with their long cold dark winters and their high cost of living?
But take a closer look at some of their lifestyle choices and practices and you’ll begin to understand why.
The secret is all in the HYGGE!
Pronounced ‘hooga’, this Danish word is hard to define and even harder to pronounce. It roughly translates as ‘cosiness’, but there’s so much more to it than that. The fact that it’s derived from the Norwegian word ‘well-being’, suggests that it is concerned with a person’s social, economic, psychological, physical and spiritual state. It’s also considered an entire attitude towards life, in which relaxation, treats and getting ‘cosy’ with things and people you love are crucial elements. The importance attached to ‘down time’ and ‘focussing on oneself ‘ is something which the Danes have become expert at – and as we all know, practice makes perfect…
In recent years the Scandinavian influence has been increasingly felt all over Europe. Inevitably the food – from pastries to crayfish; then the décor – light, warm, non-fussy and elegant; then the clothing – on trend; and of course, the coffee – plentiful, and accompanied by cake! So it was only a matter of time before elements of the lifestyle intrigued us as well. Now we Brits are becoming wise to the Danes’ way of life and the positive effects that nurturing oneself, preferably surrounded by loved ones, has on the mind and body.
So how to do it? The idea of the concept is to feel “at home” as much as possible, and to forget about the worries and stresses of everyday life.
It’s about creating a warm atmosphere and enjoying the good things in life – it could be those thick socks you purchased for the winter, a cup of fresh coffee, a warm croissant, a sweet cinnamon roll, a hot bubble-bath, a glass of wine, a log burning fire – your favourite evening playlist in the background. Hygge encourages us – not to constantly gorge on our guilty pleasures – but to take care of ourselves by allowing, welcoming and enjoying our favourite little treats. It’s about switching off, putting our feet up and letting the world take care of itself for a while.
At Laythams Farm and Lakehouse, we’ve been practising hygge for years, we just didn’t know it had a name. With our log- burning stoves, snuggly blankets and Scandinavian-inspired interiors, both places create a wonderfully intimate, informal and cosy atmosphere. Gaze out at the stunning landscapes which surround the properties. Venture out or stay put. There’s really no obligation to do anything except relax and let the world go by. Get together with friends and family. Cook a meal together. Watch your favourite movie. Open a bottle of wine. Toast your toes in front of the fire. The Lakehouse even provides a sizeable sauna for those who are after a super-duper soothing session. All these things fit the perfect hygge ethos!
At the end of the day, though the Danes defined hygge, we’re not totally sure they invented it! Here at Laythams we think we’ve got all your creature comforts covered. So grab that mug of freshly-brewed coffee, that warm and crumbly Danish pastry, wrap yourself in a toasty throw and watch the snow fall from the depths of a cosy armchair. Go on, you know you want to….