I don’t have time for Hygge. Nobody does. So let’s stop romanticising the Danish way of living.
According to multiple Google searches, this lifestyle phenomenon is the idea of ‘taking genuine pleasure in making day to day tasks or moments more special and meaningful or beautiful’. Something along those lines. The words ‘cosy’ and ‘well-being’ appear multiple times and if you look at the images page, its basically knitted socks, mugs of hot chocolate and blurred fairy lights. Groundbreaking stuff, right?
I hate to piss on anyone’s fire but life with what looks like lots of blankets and candles doesn’t need a special name. Spending time with family and friends does not need a special name. The act of eating ‘hearty meals’ does not need a special name. Nor does it need a feature table at the entrance of every Waterstones bookstore with 10 different books on it telling you that the Danish way of life is the be all and end all.
I’m sure Danish people are lovely and all but we were all f*cking fine until the act of Hygge emerged and proceeded to spew itself all over social media and now nobody is satisfied until they’re well and truly ‘hygge-d’. Nobody gave a f*ck about the ‘art of cosiness’ until about ten minutes ago. If we’re being totally honest with ourselves, it’s a lifestyle fad. Nobody pronounces it correctly or the same way and nobody is entirely sure about what it is or what it is actually for .
Personally, I imagine Hygge to be much like the act of spiralising. The thing that vegans do to make spaghetti out of vegetables and pretend they taste nice. It takes over blogs and Instagram for a while, looks kinda cool but is actually mildly disappointing. Some books appear about it and then it fizzles out and nobody gives a f*ck about it.
To be completely honest with you, I just don’t get it. Hygge is simply something that has crawled out of the woodwork and everyone is throwing their money at it in hope of some sort of enhanced way of living. I hate to be the bearer of bad news but no amount £12 books telling you to fill your house with candles is going to drastically change your life.
I can’t scroll down my Instagram feed these days with someone posting a photo of a Hygge book they’ve been gifted or that they’ve bought themselves as part of their ‘New Year New Me’ plight. I can’t scroll through pictures without seeing girls using #Hygge on a ‘hotdogs or legs’ photo of themselves wearing some fluffy socks and holding a cup of coffee.
Can we all just stop searching for ideals for at least 10 minutes. Can we not simply sit in blankets and enjoy dim lights and candles for exactly what it is? Candles and dim lights. Not Hygge, just candles and a slightly darker room. Can we not just enjoy the moments we’re living out and stop forcing ourselves to acknowledge our surroundings because some books (not always written by Danish people) tell us that this is ‘beautiful’ and it is what we should be doing. I can’t live in the moment if I’m being told to realise that I’m living in the moment.
I don’t have time for it. I’m surprised that anybody really does. I’m not saying my life is that exciting and full that I don’t have time to spend relaxing, I do. But I don’t have enough time to waste lighting a plethora of scented candles every day. I don’t have time to spend hours under blankets sipping hot chocolates until I find the beauty in the moment – it is literally just some hot chocolate, hardly life enhancing stuff.
I’m not Danish, I’m Scottish. I’m not going to force myself into the ideals of another nationality just because everyone else is. I’m certainly not going to buy into a false sense of contentment either. The Danish might be some of the happiest people in the world according to Google but I’m certainly not sad. In fact, I’m really quite content. I don’t need hygge and whatever the hell comes along with it to feel fulfilled and satisfied with my life. I can only hope that by the spring time this hideous, overwhelming desire for infinite cosiness will have subsided in everyone and we can all just go back to living our normal lives sans copious amounts of throws and ugly knitted socks.