Lifestyle

Embracing Hygge for Better Health

By Victoria Frankel

cozy kitchen black woman

Embracing a growth mindset is important for change, especially when you’re taking on new challenges and goals for your health. Every January, we are reminded of all the optimism and hope we have for the new year as we take time to reflect on the year past. But with a few weeks of January under our belt, you may feel closer to the ‘Blue Monday’ slump as your motivation starts to wane.

Even though the concept of Blue Monday (or the third Monday in January typically referred to as the most depressing day of the year) is actually a bit of a marketing scam, there is some truth in that changing your life - even for the better - is tough and requires dedication. But where many of us start to go wrong is forcing change rather than finding ways to welcome it.

One of the greatest struggles each and every one of us faces when starting on hopeful, new habits is often the decline in motivation as time passes. Even when it comes to something as important as our health, it can be easy to say things like ‘Tomorrow is a new day!’ or those infamous last words, ‘Diet starts Monday!’

But staying motivated to better yourself can be incredibly difficult. Especially when we face an untold amount of pressure to stay motivated and productive with all other aspects of life, like our jobs, families, and other responsibilities. Social media doesn’t exactly help either. We’ve all been victims to ‘doomscrolling’ and fantasizing about ‘instagram-worthy’ lives. 

Despite the reality that social media feed rarely depicts the everyday ups and downs that every human experiences, it’s easy to get swept away and even spiral when nothing seems to change. 

The Best Trick to Change? Starting With Gratitude Over What Hasn’t Changed

Rather than focus on all the things that are slipping alongside your motivation, sometimes focusing on the now over the what-if can help you grow towards your goals even more. 

Around the world, the idea of ‘Hygge’ is being embraced. Known as the Norwegian/Danish word for ‘a mood of coziness and comfortable conviviality with feelings of wellness and contentment,’ it roughly translates to bringing things into your life that spark joy and bring you feelings of warmth. 

Unfortunately, we don’t typically associate a growth mindset for improving our lives with warm feelings of comfort and coziness - but occasionally, and perhaps not often enough - that’s exactly what we need. Especially when it comes to bettering ourselves from the inside out. 

To invoke those warm feelings, we should be starting our health journeys with gratitude first. Our bodies are miracles. Every cell, every neuron, and every microbe inside of us is working together to keep us thriving. The fact that you are here - right now - reading this article is a modern marvel of nature. Before you make changes to your life, start with acknowledging how incredible you are. Take comfort in knowing your body is capable of changing and cozy up to the idea that you are so much more than just the sum of your parts.

Hygge for Health

2020 and 2021 were significant years for soul searching. Perhaps your priorities have shifted some. Maybe your New Year’s Resolutions looked vastly different compared to 2019. In truth, you’re not alone.

Researchers found that throughout the pandemic, the idea and importance of ‘comfort’ became a compounding necessity in life. You most likely noticed the increase in accessibility in comfortable clothing, matching sweater sets, home decor that felt cozy, wall paint that evokes feelings of nature and ‘zen’ - these are all signs that much of society around us is looking for ways to find sources of comfort - or hygge - in everyday items. 

Fashion styles aren’t the only thing that has changed, though. Psychologists cataloged a number of coping mechanisms individuals used to help better accept the events that unfolded around them, bringing new ways of depicting comfort into their lives. Though for many of us, we feel as if we’re on the fringes of our post-COVID life - finding comfort continues to help shape many of our decisions (and will continue to for a long time).

Why should your health journey be any different?

Starting something new can be a little frightening. And lest we forget, we’re learning just how high the stakes can get when we’re not actively looking to improve our health. With the rise of chronic conditions, scientists are showing more than ever how important it can be to take our health seriously and make better decisions with our nutrition.

But there is no reason to feel as if you’re facing an uphill battle. Take a moment to center yourself each day. Take gratitude for where you are now - today - and find comfort in the miracle that you are.

There is a way to use Hygge for Better Health - and it begins with a little education about the role of your gut and your health, and then a shoulder you can lean on for change: Viome.

We’re here to make your journey for better health feel less like a duel and more like a hug. By appreciating you - and your individuality - and giving you insights into the health of your specific body, we’re bringing a little more comfort in knowing what your next actions will be.

Less stressing and less guessing. The answers to your New Year’s Resolutions start with a little Hygge and hopefully end with a little more love for you.



The information on the Viome website is provided for informational purposes only and with the understanding that Viome is not engaged in rendering medical advice or recommendations. Viome provides this educational information to share the exciting developments being reported in the scientific literature about the human microbiome and your health. Viome products are not intended to diagnose, treat, or prevent any disease.