The art of Danish living is a lifestyle that many in the UK are trying to achieve due to the nation being frequently voted the happiest country on earth. To understand a little more about why the Danish are so happy and how you can take some simple Danish traits and add them into your life here are 6 reasons taken from ‘The Little Book of Hygge’ written by Meik Wiking (The Danish bible on happiness)
1, Togetherness and Trust
Studies show that 79% of Danes trust ‘most people’ and this is shown in the way they treat each other. It is said that people in Denmark are happy to let their babies sleep outside in a pram while the parents go into a restaurant or café! All of this trust ads up and contributes to the fact that Denmark is the least corrupt country in the EU.
Eat well, live well? In Wiking’s book he suggests that the high level of meat, confectionary and coffee consumed all contributes to Hygge. “Hygge is about being kind to yourself, giving yourself a treat”, this is true as the average Dane eats 3kg of bacon a year!
The Danes are famous for their design and the home should reflect this. Wiking says that the home is “Hygge headquarters” and there are lots of things that the home needs to become your hygge centre, like candles, cushions and the need for more sleep!
Christmas is the ultimate Hygge time of the year! Christmas traditions in Denmark are not that dissimilar to those in the UK or US, but they do plan everything a bit more down to the final detail!
The Happiness Research Institute’s studies show that 85% of people associate hygge with candles; 28% of Danes light candles every day! Denmark already is a country obsessed with lighting so adding candles to any home is an obvious choice for the Danes..
The welfare model in Denmark is a key underlying factor into people’s happiness and Wiking says there is “wide support for the welfare state.” Taxes in Denmark are very high (around 50%) but they receive social security, universal healthcare and a universal pension in return!