A Hygge-lism Quick Tip

One of the first steps when adopting a hygge / minimal lifestyle is purging the excess.  This excess is applicable to all facets of our lives, but the area that is typically assessed first is the physical possessions within the confines of our living areas. 

There is a helpful question to ask yourself when it boils down to whether or not something should be kept and is valued.

Would I buy it again at the same price?

Take a look around the room that you are currently in.  

Now picture that room completely empty.  

How many of the items that you currently own, would you buy all over again at the same price point that you paid initially to put back into that room?  You now have the unique advantage of having “test drove” everything that you own.

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You can utilize this process for each and every object that you own if need be.  I would not base your decision on what to purge and what to keep solely on this process, but it is a good way to really assess the value that you place on the items that you own.  If you can look at what you own and say that I would absolutely buy everyone of these items all over again, that is fantastic. If you say that you would not repurchase a single thing, that is fantastic as well.  What you are looking for is an honest assessment of what you deem valuable and useful.

Oftentimes, seeing an object for the first time in a store window will invoke false feelings of desire and need.  Impulse decisions more often than not lead to regret later, a buyer’s remorse of sorts. Even purchases that were not made on impulse, but were thoroughly researched and contemplated can disappoint after the fact.

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Office Space Hygge-lism

A Lesson in Productivity

You have heard the excuses, “my desk is messy because I am busy” or “It looks messy, but I know where everything is” and of course “That’s how I work, don’t mess with my process”.

Despite popular belief – a messy work space is never more productive than an organized, minimal, hygge work space.  I challenge anyone to prove me otherwise. A desk should have room to work, not be covered in it.

Sitting down at  a messy desk is proven to instantly raise your stress level, and that is before you even start any actual work.  Vice versa, a clean, minimal, organised desk instills a sense of accomplishment and calm.

Waking up your desktop on your computer and phone can have the same effect.  We have all seen the desktops that are border to border app icons, notifications and file folders.  No rhyme or reason, just a random assault on your eyes and mind. You cringe as you watch and wait for someone to locate the file or app that they are searching for.  Precious seconds tick by…

Know what you have and where you have it.  This will make you more productive.

The time that you take now to organize your desktop as well as your desk will be repaid tenfold in small time saving increments over the course of your day.

At first it may seem a little unusual.  When someone asks you for something and you instantly produce it or are able to say you have it or don’t have it without even needing to look for it.  Your coworkers will without a doubt give you an odd look the first time or two they see your clean, organised work space. The inevitable wisecrack will be made about how it looks like you don’t have anything to do when they look at you behind a desk with little to no papers, strewn across every available space.

The same reactions will happen when you wake up your desktop and only one or two files appear on it, or when you unlock your smartphone and there are no app icons or notifications cluttering up the screen.

I warn you, the freedom of less mess and clutter is as addicting as it is beneficial.  Want to see instant results? De-clutter and minimize your most used spaces; office spaces, computer, smartphone.  These are the places that most of most people’s time is spent, unfortunately. You should do anything that you can in order to spend less time in these places and on these devices so that you can spend more time living life.  Improve your productivity so that you can stop working so hard.

Now add some hygge to improve the time that you do have to spend in these places.  Bring the outside in; a plant on your desk, a comfortable chair, a warm inviting memory as your desktop and phone wallpaper and a hot cup of coffee as you answer work emails.

Laundry Room Hygge-lism

Simple and functional.  The two adjectives could easily describe just about any aspect of minimalism.  The addition of comfort and outdoor accents transform it from minimalism to hygge-lism.

The laundry room is an often forgotten about space, more utilitarian than decorative.  Just a few simple items can make a world of difference to keep you from cringing every time that you walk into the room.  

A homemade stained wood shelf adds the outdoor element, helps clean up the visual clutter, keeps you from storing items on top of the washer and dryer which inevitably end up being shaken and vibrated off and serves as a folding area post drying.  A matching shelf higher up is pleasing to the eye and storage baskets are a warm addition to the decor. The always useful clock is a quick reference for laundry time management.

A wooden crate between the washer and dryer allows for quick access to the laundry essentials.  The glass on the shelf is perfect for the inevitable change and small toys that WILL be found in the laundry, especially when small children live in the house.  Over time quite a bit of money can accumulate as well, living in Europe where coins can value up to 2 Euro’s really speeds that process up. You can always find something fun to do with that money at the end of the month, or better yet, invest it and see how much you can turn that forgotten about change into.  Every penny counts.

Some would argue that baskets and wall decor are not minimalism, but this is an unfortunate misnomer.  Minimalism and Hygge are about calm, simple yet functional, stress free spaces, not stark walls and cold rooms.  The baskets are great for storing extra consumable items so that you do not find that you are out of detergent at the most inopportune time.  Simple pieces of art or photos on the wall are pleasing and calming to the eye and have a way of relaxing you.  

Having extra anything is not something that I am a fan of, but consumables have more leeway.  While buying 5 bottles of laundry detergent when they are on sale might be a little extreme, 1 or 2 is plenty.  If there is an item that you know will be used over time, does not spoil and can be found at a good price, go ahead and get an extra.  Store it in a basket to eliminate the clutter and keep the space clean and functional.