Now that winter is here it’s time for me to cozy up with my bullet journal (and a hot mug of cocoa!) for a much needed slow-down after the Christmas and New Year’s whirlwind. I’ve been reading The Little Book of Hygge (pronounce Hoo-ga) for ideas on how to practice hygge for winter self-care. In Danish, hygge translates to comfort, togetherness and well-being — this sweet, illustrated guide challenges us to “get consciously cozy.” I don’t know about you, but I’m totally up for the challenge!
I will be creating a bullet journal collection page for hygge ideas and then incorporating those self-care and wellness activities into my BuJo this winter.
Why Practice Hygge for Winter Self-Care?
In Denmark, the people enjoy a hygge lifestyle that involves creating a moment of coziness, especially in the wintertime when it’s cold. Denmark has long and cold
winters, but the residents want to spend a lot of time with their relatives and friends, so everyone tries to have enjoyable hygge moments that will create a feeling of warmth. Danes consistently rate as one of the happiest people on Earth, in spite those famous long, cold, dark winters.
You don’t need to be from Denmark to want hygge moments, and with these winter self-care tips, you can also feel cozier during a snowstorm — or really, at anytime of year and in any weather condition. I live in the Pacific Northwest where winters are fairly mild, but drizzly and gray. The lack of sunshine and short daylight hours are depressing for many of us, and seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a real thing. Any hygge ideas and inspiration will make it into my bullet journal, I assure you!
Megan, over at her blog Page Flutter has some genius ideas about how to add hygge activities to your bullet journal. Above are her habits and checklist page spreads. Check it out!
Have Candlelight in Your Home
If you live in Denmark, then you will rarely find scented candles on display in a home, but you will find unscented lit candles instead. Most Danish people have a lot of plain white candles throughout the house (or even the office!), and they light the candles to create a cozy ambience. The unscented candles are lit throughout the day and are in every room. Look for plain white candles at a local store, and place the items in candleholders throughout your home to create a cozy atmosphere.
Cook Your Favorite Comfort Foods
In the winter, you can overcome the feeling of darkness in the winter by cooking your favorite comfort foods. You might want to have a warm bowl of macaroni and cheese, or
you might prefer mashed potatoes with fried chicken. To increase the feelings of coziness, you will invite your friends to your home to enjoy a potluck buffet of comfort
foods. You can also have a cooking party to learn how to prepare the most popular comfort foods from Denmark.
Create a Quiet Oasis Inside Your Home
You should also have a quiet oasis inside your home where you can rest and relax after a difficult day at work. This special area might be a window seat that is filled with soft pillows and a warm blanket so that you can read your favorite book. Or, you might have a quiet area in your living room or bedroom that makes you feel peaceful and cozy.
Visit a Nearby Cafe
On the weekends, you should have a favorite cafe to visit with your friends where you can sit for hours talking about nothing while drinking cups of coffee and eating delicious desserts. While spending time with your friends, you may have an intense feeling of contentment or coziness that is indescribable, making it a hygge moment.
Enjoy a Favorite Hobby in the Winter
If you don’t have time for a hobby during the other seasons, then you will have time in the winter. Choose a hobby that you can enjoy at home or with your friends. You might want to learn how to knit in the winter, and this is a hobby that you can take with you to a friend’s home. (I’m taking up embroidery — I went to a MeetUp yesterday and was inspired to begin!) Or, you might want to learn more about collecting coins from around the world, or you may want to learn more about woodworking.
Additional cozy moments in the winter can include lighting a fire in a fireplace before relaxing in front of it to listen to music, or you can have a warm bubble bath before slathering lotion on your dry skin.
Create Numerous Cozy Moments in the Winter With a Home Spa Day
Spending a day at a spa leaves you feeling relaxed, refreshed, and all around incredible. But they also come with a price tag that puts them out of reach on a daily or
even weekly basis. It is possible to enjoy a spa day without the expensive price tag, though: a spa day at home. Here are some ways you can recreate the spa day experience at home.
Light Scented Aromatherapy Candles
One of the greatest benefits of an at home spa day is that you can use your favorite scented candles to truly customize the experience. (In Denmark the candles are unscented, but so here we’re going beyond the traditional hygge tapers for an extra dose of cozy.) Get several of your favorite scented candles in Lavender, Lemongrass, Orange, Tangerine, Vanilla — are all yummy scents, especially when made with 100% soy wax and essential oils. Light them and enjoy the soothing fragrance, soft light, and gentle warmth they provide.
Stock up on Supplies
Hit up the drug store, big box store, or supermarket and stock up on all the things you need for a spa day: face masks, creamy lotions, luxurious shampoo and conditioner,
manicure and pedicure supplies (including a stunning color of polish), and some cucumbers or fruit to flavor your water. Get some fragrant oil for a massage, if you’ve
got a friend or partner who’s going to participate. Don’t forget the bubble bath so you can luxuriate in a nice, warm tub.
Don’t Forget the Music
Atmosphere and ambience are everything. So for a truly spa-like experience, go for some soft, soothing classical, or perhaps some Enya. If you have a full-house speaker system, this would be ideal, so you can hear your music throughout the house. Otherwise, create a custom playlist on your phone, connect it to a Bluetooth speaker, and move it around with you.
Take Your Time
In today’s busy world, we have a tendency to rush through everything. Even when there’s a day off, errands or even reading a book tends to be hurried through. For this to
be a true spa day, you need to kick back and take your time. Savor each experience of the day. Soak in the bubble bath. Enjoy the massage for as long as possible. Apply the face mask and truly focus on how it feels. Don’t double up on things – don’t be tempted to apply the face mask while you soak in the tub. Let each individual experience be its own and pay attention to all the smells, sights, sounds, textures, and feelings each brings.
Get Rid of all Distractions
Make sure you won’t be disturbed. Turn off your phone, your tablet, and your computer. Turn the ringer down on your landline, and consider disconnecting the doorbell. Leave the TV off, and let the newspaper wait. Ignore the outside world and focus on your spa day. Let yourself relax and rejuvenate by giving yourself a complete break from daily life.
A spa day at home can be just as relaxing and soothing as a day spent at a professional spa. With planning and thought, and the intention to truly enjoy it, you can create an experience that’s as rich and pleasurable as any you’ve had at a spa. Treat yourself and enjoy the solitude and tranquility of being in the comfort of your own home as you pamper yourself.
Look for the Positive
Yes, it’s cold and dark outside. But that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Choose to be inspired by the wintry scene outside your window, rather than letting it get you down. Remember the beauty of snow and ice as it falls. The nights are long and peaceful in the winter, which turns our bodies and mind toward getting some well-deserved rest. Just as the animals and plants have gone dormant for the season, so should we use winter as a time of quiet reflection, so we can recharge and prepare ourselves for the days ahead.
And Finally, Bullet Journal!
Winter is the perfect time to snuggle up with a notebook and pen and create fabulous designs, collections, or page spreads. You might be on the go most of summer, but when the weather turns cold and you’re cozy inside, you may be inspired to slow down and doodle, do adult coloring, or sketch madalas and zentangles. For hygge doodle ideas, check out the designs you see on the image below. They were created by an artist/blogger, Koko, who lives in Denmark with her husband and young son. Koko really knows hygge!
How to Make Your BuJo Super-Cute in 2019! (Includes seasonal doodles with links to downloadable tutorials.)
Winter Self-Care Activities for Your Bullet Journal (Includes hygge, and other self-care ideas for winter.)
Winter comes around every year, reminding us to retreat within. As we snuggle beneath our blankets to escape the cold, we should remember to nurture our bodies and minds.
Take the time to do the things you enjoy, things which will lift your spirits no matter what the weather may be. When we do these things, we will be well on our way to achieving the perfect balance of winter self-care.
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