happinez (the spelling and use of lower case is how they spell their own name) is a magazine dedicated to spirituality and bliss. I picked it up on a trip to an art gallery, where the red cover and content teasers intrigued me.
So much of hygge ties in to a quasi-spiritual path, with the emphasis on nature, togetherness, finding your happy and enjoying life just as it is, that I often find myself reading magazines and books with a spiritual focus, despite not being what I think of as a very ‘holy’ person. It describes itself as a mindstyle magazine, and covers spirituality, lifestyle, travel, psychology, food, relationships… life, basically.
The whole magazine has a beautiful aesthetic: there are plenty of quotes throughout chosen to encourage you to think, mull over and carry the wisdom you gain from it with you. I love how so many pages are photos, with an emphasis on natural settings or settings that are designed to relax the reader. I don’t think this will ever be a neon orange and vibrant yellow magazine, but this is the first issue I’ve ever bought, so I could be proven wrong.
Navigating the magazine is easy, with a clear contents page and articles separated out into topics. Inspiration, Insights and Interviews…. I like the holistic approach, rather than having my wellbeing broken down into physical, mental and spiritual. My body and brain don’t work as a set of disparate elements, so why should magazines treat them as such? Transferable skills are equally useful with the Boss at work or when you’re calming a toddler. Life is one big, beautiful mess.
I found the breadth of articles interesting as well. There’s a lot of Eastern style philosophies (Gandhi and an interesting article on Sadhguru, the author of a fascinating-sounding book called Inner Engineering) but also more Western experiences. I find myself intrigued by the idea of the Spirit Weavers, a circle gathering of women who meet in Oregon. I feel there is the presence of great power whenever women come together, perhaps that’s just me being romantic, or perhaps because women do have a shared experience and shared worldview that supercedes location or language; that shared experience gives us a power we very rarely acknowledge and are sometimes too ready to give away.
I possibly should come clean here and say that the inclusion of a whole article on Druidry was a big draw of the magazine for me when I bought it. I’ve always been intrigued, captivated by Celtic spirituality, and early British religion; that interest has grown stronger recently and I’m seriously looking into how following a Druids’ path could help me strengthen my relationship with the land and other people. I admire the deep love and respect for Nature that druids have, the long links that the religion has with the land I live in (there’s roads nearby called Druid’s Park and Druid’s Cross, as well as stones in our local park that are as old as Stonehenge and may well have been used on a smaller scale but a similar way) and the fact that Druidry has such a feeling of interconnectedness, that the sacred and mundane are the same and that life, in all its phases, is special.
There is a dossier, eight pages long, on ways to de-stress. It’s a very practical read, containing advice on spotting the signs of stress, how modern life is creating a state of permanent stress (we no longer run from the scary bears occasionally, but deal with the irritating bugbears of office life every single day) and a really valuable piece of advice: the way we deal with stress is as individual as we are. That means being prepared to experiment and find the solutions that work for you at that moment, rather than adopt wholesale another person’s techniques: that said, the article gives you a choice of the most popular stress-busting techniques to try out, such as breathing, gratitude thinking, forest bathing and anchoring your day with oases of calm. It’s like a really good self-help book but condensed down to a short, easy read.
And, again, this is where the hygge of the magazine comes out. Those ‘anchors in your day’ will almost certainly be hygge moments: a cup of tea sipped slowly, a walk in the woods, that half hour you spend eating lunch away from your desk. Alone, or with others, hygge is a de-stress tool you need to keep near.
At £6.95 and published four times a year, happinez is an interesting addition to my magazine collection. It’s eclectic enough to keep me interested, with food articles and interior articles as well as the more spiritual or wellbeing stories. I haven’t got a subscription yet, but I will definitely look out for the next edition and pick it up, while the inspiration I have gleaned from this one has sent me off searching for more information on several things that grabbed my notice.
You can find Happinez on the web on their own Happinez website, their Facebook page, an Instagram feed full of meaningful quotes and on Pinterest which seems, beautifully, to be curated by the magazine’s home base in the Netherlands.
If you’d like to support me….
My new book, Cosy Happy Hygge is available as an ebook or a paperback on Amazon now. As you know, I do the whole kit and caboodle myself, from writing to proofreading to designing and I’m very proud of this one. It’s about using rhythm and ritual to make your life a gentler, kinder place. Writing it has been an important part of my mental health recovery.
I don’t monetise my blog. I don’t run adverts, take sponsorship for writing posts or use affiliate links. I want everything I do on this blog and in my hygge life outside to be truthful. If I promote a book it’s because I’ve read it and like it, if I point out an item it’s because it’s impressed me on its own merits and not because the publicist has talked me into it. It does mean I don’t run giveaways and I’m not chasing followers, but the drawback is that I need to find a way to support myself.
That’s why I write books. My thoughts are that if I ask you to buy a book not only does it support me, and let me keep writing as an independent writer, but you get something back for your bucks. I’ve written several books, some on hygge, some on Christmas. If you like what you read here, or in the Hygge Nook, and you’d like to support a struggling writer, would you please consider buying a book? Ebooks give you the best value, since for 2 or 3 pounds you get the whole content of the book without paying the extra for paper production, but I’d be a pretty poor writer if I didn’t appreciate the beauty of a real book in the hand. If you buy just one book, it all adds up in the end to support me, and I’d be so grateful.
If you already have my books, or just want to support me as an independent writer, you can always just send me the price of a cup of coffee as a friend, to paypal.me/HyggeJem . I tend to use a lot of my spare cash on books that I review for the website, so every penny donated goes towards building my happy hygge life.
My first three books are hygge related, 50 Ways to Hygge the British Way was my first book, and is available in Paperback and Kindle version. It’s a simple look at ways to feel more hyggely in life and at home even though we’re not Danish and don’t have it in our DNA.
How to Hygge Your Summer, in Paperback and Kindle form, has lots of good ideas for the summer months. I strongly believe that hygge is so much more than throws and warm drinks.
Happier is my fourth book. It’s about how I boost my own happiness levels. It’s full of hints, tips and ideas for you to use and adapt to suit your own situation. It is available in ebook and paperback version from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com.
I have three Christmas books,
Have Yourself a Happy Hygge Christmas was released in September 2017 and is available again in paperback and ebook version. It looks at keeping the Christmas season warm and cosy, with ideas for activities and routines to keep Christmas happy.
A (Hygge) Christmas Carol is my look at Dickens’ immortal classic and the many lessons we still learn from it today. It contains the full text of the book as well as hyggely thoughts on the story.
Enjoying a Self Care Christmas is only available in ebook version. It’s about keeping Christmas simple enough and healthy enough to keep you sane in the process.
If you buy any of the books or some of the items through the links on this page, I get a couple of extra pence per copy, as an Amazon Affiliate, in Amazon vouchers which go towards buying more books to review for the blog. I’d really love it if you’d support me monetarily, but I quite understand that cash is tight for many people, and I just love having your support via reading and commenting as well.
Truthfully, I’ll probably never make a living as a writer, but I do make a little extra income that gets ploughed back into books and magazines. One obsession feeds the other…