Cozy up to hygge – at work

By Jeanne Reynolds | 

If you use social media or occasionally glance through glossy lifestyle magazines, you’ve probably heard of hygge. It’s a Danish term — pronounced hue-guh or hoo-ga, depending on the source —meaning a feeling of comfort and coziness. Think fuzzy slippers and hot cocoa by the fire. Reading a great book on a rainy day. Sharing home-baked goodies with family and friends.

It was big over the winter — big as in one of the hottest home decor trends of 2017 on Pinterest and more than 1.5 million posts tagged with #hygge on Instagram.

But just because spring has sprung, you don’t need to pack away the hygge lifestyle with the scarves and mittens. Not only that, you can bring it to the office, too. Here are a few ideas on how to hygge-up your workspace:

  • Go green. As in bring a small plant or vase of flowers for your desk. Plants in the office reduce stress, improve productivity and may even help you avoid the bug travelling around the building. They look nice and make you feel good — very hygge.
  • Share the love. And by love, I mean food. Bring in a batch of cookies or muffins to share with co-workers once in a while. Homemade is great but not required (no one is judging — that’s so un-hygge). It’s all about enjoying simple treats with those around you.
  • Fluff your space. Maybe your fave photos of the kids and dog could be freshened up with new frames. If there’s room — and it’s not a tripping hazard — add a mini rug to mark the entrance to your kingdom. Hint: Oriental carpets never go out of style.
  • Ditch the clutter. While you’re at it, maybe your office digs could use a serious cleaning and decluttering. Too much stuff around you can make you less productive and stressed rather than cozy. No wonder minimalism is another hot trend.
  • Go low tech. As in put down that phone, especially in meetings. Neuroscience research proves there’s no such thing as multitasking. You’re not getting much out of that conference call anyway if you’re checking texts and emails (and admit it, Facebook posts) instead of actively participating. It’s not only unproductive, it’s rude. Instead, up your hygge quotient by connecting with colleagues in person when possible.
  • Read for fun. If your break and a book go hand in hand, once in a while put down that dry business tome the other over-achievers are trying to wade through and read something you’d normally take to the beach this summer.

Many of us spend a third of every day at work. A few simple changes can help you create a space where you feel comfortable and productive … and pretty hygge.

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