This winter, enjoy hygge—and learn to pronounce it—with these cozy tips

Hygge. We’ve all heard the word. Some of us aren't sure what it means, and most of us wonder how to pronounce it. Hygge is a Danish word that Canadians have adapted and is used to acknowledge a feeling—whether alone or with friends, at home or out—that is cozy, charming or special. Now, I’ve also learned that I’ve been saying it entirely wrong. Hygge is pronounced "hue-guh." I’ve been saying "hi-ge."

HouseNot only is hygge a buzzword right now, it’s also a concept that I value and feel strongly about incorporating into my space. This season, I'll be bringing this feeling into my home, my personal life and my day-to-day routines. Modern design is important to me, but it’s also important that my space feels comfortable, inviting and warm.

Here are a few ways to make your season undeniably cozy...

1. Make your house a hygge home

Cable knit rugWayfairThis Wayfair cable knit rug has an incredibly plush feel under your feet and the large shape brings the room together, creating a more social atmosphere. Another one of my favourites is their Pom Pom bedding. (I don’t know what says “cozy” more than wanting to get into bed—and stay there all day!) Wayfair's View in Room feature on the company's app lets you see furniture and decor in your home before you buy, which is so much fun—especially for interior design lovers.

OttomanMobiliaOne of my favourite ways to make a house feel like a home is with the addition of comfortable accessories, from throws and pillows to finishing touches in the living room. Anything to create comfort for myself, my family and my guests contributes to the hygge environment I’m wanting to create. Mobilia is home to a great selection of comfortable home decor pieces, including the beautiful Noble ottoman which is terrific as seating but also just to simply pull a space together.

Winter greensWestcoast GardensTo top off your hygge-inspired space, bring some life into the room with greenery. I always have a variety of fresh botanicals to help me de-stress, and also to purify the air. While flowers and succulents are an all-year addition, I love bringing a variety of winter greens into my space for the winter. I love the seasonal options this year at Westcoast Gardens, which showcases a huge variety and knowledgeable staff.

2. Sit down with a journal

Sometimes a simple five-minute exercise of writing feelings of gratitude can change your whole perspective on the day. I have read countless studies on gratitude and the impact it can have on your mindset. I like to do my exercises in the evening, reflecting on what I was grateful for throughout the day. I love this five-minute gratitude book from eBay.

3. Light a candle, take a bath

Bath productsI know this seems like a no-brainer, but the act of doing something intentional for yourself dramatically boosts mindset. Self-love and "me time" is a necessary way to recharge the spirit, so you have more energy to give to your loved ones. Few things are as soothing as a bath, with a delicious smelling candle. I often order my candles from eBay as they have fast, free shipping anywhere in Canada. This is one of my favourites as the lavender is a natural relaxant.

4. Move your body

One of the best paths to a healthy mind is through a healthy body. I’m not suggesting that you need to be in great shape to be happy, but physical exercise and movement have been linked to increased mental health in many studies. On a more technical level, it releases dopamine—or happy chemicals—in your brain, reduces stress and anxiety and promotes restful sleep. If you’re feeling down, head out for a walk around the block. Even that small effort will help.

MugHopefully you’re feeling inspired to live a hygge life. Danish catchphrases aside, that calm, coziness and clarity in your space—and in your mind—are the secrets to a happy life.