Embracing Hygge in Your Everyday Life

For me and many around me, 2017 brought a lot of stress, mental exhaustion and need for self-care. There has been a lot going on to deal with (women’s health and safety issues, economic uncertainty, violence around the world, the list goes on), that embracing hygge couldn’t be gaining momentum at a better time.

Hygge (pronounced hoo-ga) is a Danish word that doesn’t have an English equivalent, but according to Oxford Dictionaries, is described as:

A quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being (regarded as a defining characteristic of Danish culture)

Going into 2018 is the perfect time to embrace the trend that is gaining popularity. Use this opportunity to incorporate hygge for self-care and warmth.

How to incorporate hygge

Since it’s a feeling and not a thing, hygge is different for everyone. How you embrace it is up to you and your needs. The focus is on comfort and doing what brings you warmth and happiness.

Maybe it’s a food (think of a warm, rich hot dish in Minnesota; maybe a creamy mac and cheese in the south; or perhaps a lobster roll in New England), a cozy blanket and good book, a pumpkin- or cinnamon-scented candle, nice body products or even a sweet treat.

Comfort and coziness doesn’t have to be the only part of it. For me, I’ll be double-thinking my use of technology, instead opting for things that nourish my soul and have me live in the moment. These include:

  • Continuing self-care at least a few times a week
  • Hosting a game night
  • Making time for catching up with friends
  • Focusing on cultivating my garden
  • Sharing coffee and conversations with strong women
  • Putting my family first

To begin, think about little ways you can make your environment and surroundings more comfortable in simple ways, or opt to connect with people and things around you.

Learn more about and how to hygge on the Visit Denmark hygge page.

Criticism of hygge

Hygge might not be for everyone, and even if you incorporate it, it’s good to be aware of criticisms about it as not to go overboard or lose site of the meaning and intention.

It’s been said that the slow pace and somewhat specific way to incorporate a feeling could be boring or stifling. Because the point is to create your own cozy sphere, it’s said it could be exclusive of other people and thoughts, creating too much of a realm of just what you believe. And others don’t like hygge because there isn’t an opportunity to be too boastful, even about good things.

Be yourself

Make 2018 a little more about living as comfortable and relaxing a life to take a mental break from the chaos outside.

Don’t become so enclosed in your own world. Find the small bits and pieces of the hygge concept that work for you to live a more low-key and comfortable 2018.

What parts of hygge do you already do or plan to do this year?

 

 

 

Podcasts For Communications Professionals

Podcasts for communications professionals | Kale and Ale

Note: This isn’t a lifestyle post, per se. However, as a lifestyle blogger and professional in the communications field, I’m sharing this for the many other bloggers and communications professionals in my personal sphere. If this isn’t you but you’re into information, I hope this is helpful. Let me know if this type of post is OK in the comments below.

A longtime occasional listener of podcasts, following the popularity of Serial a few years ago solidified my interest. I started to expand what I listened to. Now, so many outlets and bloggers are podcasting, that it’s easy to find something based on your interests.

To listen more effectively, I had to organize my podcasts. I tried a few different things, but I’ve found using the Stitcher radio app to work best for me. I can listen on mobile or desktop and can easily subscribe, search for new and popular content and listen with an easy interface and experience. Below, you can see my desktop setup and some podcasts I follow.

Stitcher Radio app desktop | Kale and Ale


RELATED: Tips to leverage social media during events for extra exposure.

As a communications professional, I really enjoy podcasts about learning, business, technology, news and marketing or social media. My goal listening to podcasts is to learn something new in one of those fields, and the below podcasts all fit that bill. The podcasts I listen to and why I listen, broken into communications and news, include:

Communications Podcasts

The Science of Social MediaActionable insights you can implement right away, with topics about changes in social media that are timely.

Social ProsFind out how different companies and businesses are achieving results through social media.

Social Media MarketingFrom the people behind the popular Social Media Examiner website, this podcast looks at social media and marketing tips and success stories.

Being BossAimed at creative freelancers, it covers a variety of topics on how to handle being a freelancer, what to expect and how to succeed.

News Podcasts

Radiolab: Radiolab is more difficult to describe that it feels it should be. It’s about science, but so much more than that, mixing news, fact and everything about us and going on around us.

Serial: Serial is a serialized story, going over different themes or aspects with deep investigative reporting on a topic that isn’t finished or closed.

Freakonomics RadioBased off the books of the same name, the podcast tells us about ourselves and why things are the way they are.

TED Radio HourBased off those engaging and thought-provoking TEDTalks we have all watched, each episode is a person talking about a topic. Sure to expand your mind.

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Pop culture news, discussions, interviews and information in a fun, relaxed format that makes you feel like you are part of the conversation.

How I Built This: A look at how people built the success they have today.

This American LifeEach episode has a theme of something in the news currently, with different angles and stories within the episode that give a very human face to the discussion.

Did you find this helpful or do you have a podcast to suggest? Leave a note in comments below. I plan to write a post about blogs I follow; list any you enjoy.

Friday Links

We have made it to the end of a short work week! It’s officially “summer” season up here in Minnesota, but I know for many of you it’s very warm and has been so for a while. What wonderful things are you doing this week? I’m going to visit my family in Iowa.

Speaking of, I went to Decorah, Iowa, last weekend; look for a blog recap soon. On the way home I checked out Forager Brewing Company in Rochester, Minnesota. Such a cool space, it has lots of little spaces, rooms and nooks, with all kinds of decor, food and beer styles. I posted a picture on my Instagram. (Follow me at Kale and Ale if you are on IG!)

RELATED: Rochester daytrip: Breweries and hiking options

 

Speaking of, if you are looking for new drinks, I’m hosting a giveaway of a copy of “Wild Drinks and Cocktails,” so enter by Monday! Enter for your chance to win here. Even if you don’t win, check out the recipe for the Claret Cup.

I love running in different locations and races that are on new routes. As the article “9 Best Places to Run in the U.S.” states, running while traveling is great because it’s a way to sight see, feel like a local and work up an appetite for new restaurants and food. I really couldn’t agree more. While I haven’t run any of these places, I’ve walked or been near a few, and can agree these are good locations. What is the best place you have run?

Do you love food trucks and live in the Twin Cities? Here are a handful of food trucks to watch and visit in the Twin Cities in 2016, including a juice and smoothie truck, a sushi-burrito truck, and food served out of a Winnebago.

 

Friday links

Timely, for college grads and a lot of adults I know: 11 Cooking Skills Every College Grad Should Master. Even I skimp out on number two, which is probably terrible since I have a food blog. What one (or two, three, etc.) do you most need to work on? Share it in the comments below.

RELATED: How to cook smarter, not harder

Worth a mention: 19 Essential Restaurants for Vegetarians in Minneapolis and St. Paul. What is your favorite or one you are really looking forward to checking out?

” Paying attention to food’s relationship with nature and humanity allows us to connect with each other on a very fundamental level.” That’s how one writer describes food’s relationship beyond just nourishing our bodies. I believe this concept so much, and as one who loves the stories behind things and anthropology, food gives me both. This is such an important concept and reminder. Read how cooking documentaries (and the meals we make) are about life.

And have you heard about the Delray Beach, Florida, brewery that made edible rings for the six packs? I’m sure you have since my two biggest reader demographics are South Floridians and beer drinkers, but just in case. Saltwater Brewery created an edible beer ring to help sea animals stay safe. My heart is so warm to read this, I see it as a win-win for all involved. Watch the very well done video about it.

Saltwater Brewery “Edible Six Pack Rings” from We Believers on Vimeo.

 

Friday Links

Chickpeasdrained

Don’t throw away that liquid, save it for the hot food aquafaba. Flickr photo by Robyn Anderson

You are reading the blog soon to be renamed Aquafaba and Ale. Don’t you like the alliteration? Just kidding, but since many sources cite kale is on the way out and aquafaba seems to be the hot new food, I thought it was a fun thought. What is aquafaba, you ask? Simply put, the cooking liquid of beans. Read about aquafaba here. It’s popular in the news this week, heralded as the new vegan wonderfood:

This past weekend I planted my garden and containers.

Garden 2016 Containers | Kale and Ale

Read about my 2016 garden, a guide to regrowing fruits and vegetables from scrapes and tips for first-time gardeners.

This paragraph contains Amazon Affiliate links. Other than that, I’ve been reading books like crazy. I just met with my book club and we discussed “The Book of the Unknown Americans,” but I also just finished “Taking the Stage” and started “Adventures for Your Soul.” I joined Goodreads (follow me on Goodreads) to keep track of my books to read. What are you reading?