Why Denmark dominates the globe Happiness Report rankings year after year

Hygge is actually sometimes translated as “cozy,” nevertheless a better definition of hygge is actually “intentional intimacy,” which can happen when you have safe, balanced in addition to harmonious shared experiences. A cup of coffee that has a friend in front of a fireplace might qualify, as could a summer picnic from the park.

A family might have a hygge evening which entails board games in addition to treats, or friends might get together for a casual dinner with dimmed lighting, Great food in addition to easygoing fun. Spaces can also be described as hyggelige (“Your brand-new house is actually so hyggeligt”) in addition to a common way of telling a host thank you after a dinner is actually to say which the item was hyggeligt (meaning, we had a Great time). Most Danish social events are supposed to be hyggelige, so the item might be a harsh critique to say which a party or dinner wasn’t hyggelige.

Research on hygge has found which in Denmark, the item’s integral to people’s sense of well-being. the item acts as a buffer against stress, while also creating a space to build camaraderie. In a highly individualized country like Denmark, hygge can promote egalitarianism in addition to strengthen trust.

the item might be fair to say which hygge is actually fully integrated into the Danish cultural psyche in addition to culture. nevertheless the item has also become a bit of a global phenomenon – Amazon at This particular point sells more than 900 books on hygge, in addition to Instagram has over 3 million posts with the hashtag #hygge. Google trends data show a big jump in searches for hygge beginning in October 2016.

Nor is actually Denmark the only country which includes a word for a concept similar to hygge – the Norwegians have koselig, the Swedes mysig, the Dutch gezenlligheid in addition to the Germans gemütlichkeit.

from the U.S. – which also places a high value on individualism – there’s no real cultural equivalent of hygge. Income is actually generally associated with happiness; yet even though the country’s GDP has been rising in addition to its unemployment rates have been declining, levels of happiness from the U.S. have been steadily decreasing.

What’s going on?

Income inequality continues to be an issue. nevertheless there’s also been a marked decrease in interpersonal trust in addition to trust toward institutions like the government as well as the media. from the end, more disposable income doesn’t hold a candle to having someone to rely on in a time of need (something which 95 percent of Danes believe they have).

At its core, hygge is actually about building intimacy in addition to trust with others.

Americans could probably use a little more of the item in their lives.

Commentary by Marie Helweg-Larsen, a Professor of Psychology at the Glenn E. & Mary Line Todd Chair from the Social Sciences, Dickinson College. She is actually also a contributor at The Conversation, an independent source of news in addition to views through the academic in addition to research community.

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