Remember hygge? The Danish lifestyle concept took the Internet by storm, offering Pinterest its new favorite expression with no English equivalent that connotes a sense of coziness and winter-y warmth. The trend permeated every aspect of our lives, from fashion to interior design to travel to leisure activities (knitting by a fireplace never seemed so appealing before).
The boom of hygge also encouraged other cultures to introduce the world to their own lifestyle concepts, and the latest to sweep social media is the Scottish answer to hygge: Còsagach. Equally fascinating, Còsagach (pronounced coze-sag-och) translates from Gaelic to the feeling of being warm, cozy, and sheltered, has been identified by Visit Scotland as a top trend for 2018.
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So how do you practice còsagach?
Well, for one thing, winter is the perfect time of the year to get your còsagach on. "In the winter when the storms rage and the waves crash against the rocks, there is nothing more satisfying than being curled up in front of the fire, book and hot toddy in hand, listening to the weather outside," states Visit Scottland's report.
You can also visit your favorite restaurant or pub, as "relaxing in a friendly setting induces feelings of warmth and snugness." What's the point of all this, you ask? Just like hygge, còsagach is all about slowing down in the winter and taking time for self-care. With the weather less than pleasant, a lot of people consider this season too gloomy to enjoy, but if you look at it from a different angle, it is actually the best time of the year to unwind and recharge—and that is ultimately at the heart of còsagach.
According to Visit Scotland, there are several other "ingredients" you need to fully enjoy the practice, and nature is an important one. A quick weekend escape to a mountain lodge or another destination that will take you away from the hustle and bustle of the city is recommended. Eating and drinking in a cozy environment is also an essential part of còsagach. Staying indoors after a long day out in the cold can contribute to the feelings of warmth and coziness as well.
So this holiday season, indulge in some cultural exploration, and embrace còsagach.