‘Hygge’, ‘pyt’: What are your Words for Well-Being?

Take time to pause, notice, and choose…

Any blog that starts with a reference to a group of people (in this case, a nation) who appear to be ‘happier’ than other populations, is going to pique my interest to learn more. This post certainly did that!

I recall hearing about ‘hygge’ (pronounced hue-guh) years ago. Hygge is a Danish word used when acknowledging a feeling or moment – whether alone or with friends, at home or out, ordinary or extraordinary – as cozy, charming or special. It is simply about awakening…it is about noticing… it is about slowing down and being present to not only recognize a moment, but to enjoy it.

Well, the Danes have a new word for well-being…’pyt’ (sounds like pid). It is also about noticing and acknowledging…however, pyt is an expression used in response to daily hassles, frustrations or mistakes (it translates in English to sayings like ‘don’t worry about it’, ‘stuff happens’ or ‘oh well…’).

You might spill coffee down the front of your shirt, shrug and say, “pyt.” You might see a parking ticket on your windshield and, just as you begin to become angry, shake your head and murmur, “pyt.”

I love this…for two significant reasons! First, just as it is with hygge, pyt is about noticing, and acknowledging – AND, since it is about noticing and acknowledging something negative or frustrating, it is about taking some action that will help move your through that negative situation. Rather than being de-railed for the day, or stuffing that frustration down – only to be piled on to other frustrations – expressing ‘pyt’ allows you a chance to reframe the situation … and to then move on.

It got me thinking…what, I asked myself, are words that I can use….to first, notice and relish positive moments…and second, to move through negative situations?

If you’ve experienced me as a keynote speaker, you have certainly heard me talk about anchoring (usually framed in a ‘Touch Yourself’, fun moment!). Based in research from NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming), when you create an anchor you set up a stimulus response pattern so that you can feel the way you want to, when you need to. Anchoring refers to the process of associating an internal response with some external or internal trigger so that the response may be quickly, and sometimes covertly, re-accessed. So, for positive, warm, happy, ‘cozy’ moments in my life, my word for that will be ‘touch’. That word will be my reminder to pause, to notice, to enjoy and to anchor that experience in my mind and body.

When I experience negative, frustrating, daily hassles…the word I will use is ‘ahhhh’. That will be my reminder to breathe, to let it go, to ‘chill’, to move on/past/through that moment.

What words will work for you?

Deri Latimer is an expert in positive possibilities for people! A TEDx Speaker, Author, and Organizational consultant, Deri works with organizations who want to create happy and healthy workplaces for increased positivity, productivity and prosperity!



5 Tips to Warm Up to Winter

Enjoy the Season!

Baby, it’s cold outside! A song that received much attention this winter, in the light of the #MeToo movement, this title was a recurring theme across many parts of North America in January and February.

If it’s true for you, try these 5 Tips to Warm Up to Winter

Tip # 1: Give It a Break

The ‘it’ to which I refer is….yourself! Leave your desk or workstation (preferably your phone, too) and take your breaks – morning, noon and afternoon. Even if you can’t get away for your full break, take 10 minutes to leave your desk or normal work area and eat your lunch/snack somewhere else. It will give your body a chance to nourish itself and your mind the opportunity to slow down without work related distractions. Practice being fully present while you are AWAY from your work area.

Tip # 2: Choose Positive

Focus on what you are looking forward to every day (not what you are dreading, not that your car might not start at the end of the day, not that you are dreading the slow ride home, etc.). Throughout the day (during breaks is a great time), ask yourself ‘What went well so far today?’. Then, pause and enjoy the experience. Write down what you appreciate about your leader, co-workers, clients/customers, and family members. End each day by writing down three things for which you are grateful for that day.

Tip # 3: Smile : )

Do it, right now! Don’t you feel better already? Now, smile at your co-workers as you pass them in the hallway, as you greet them at meetings or wherever you get the chance. Check out Ron Gutman’s TED Talk on the hidden power of smiling. In that talk, Gutman, the founder and CEO of HealthTap reviews a number of studies that reveal how smiling has a measurable effect on your overall well-being, and can be a predictor of how long you’ll live. If that’s not reason enough to smile, remember that it is a contagious behavior…so your smile impacts the well-being and longevity of everyone around you!

Tip # 4: Give Yourself Permission to ‘Hang’

You are constantly on the go. There is always something to do, or somewhere you either need to be, or think you should be. Use a cold day as an ‘excuse’ to do something you rarely take time to do: read that good book you’ve been meaning to get to, order take out, stoke up the fire and have a movie marathon with the people you care about.

Tip #5: Remind Yourself That ‘This Too Shall Pass’

I was at a funeral recently, and a young lady read ‘For Everything There Is A Season’. I’m embarrassed to admit that I did not know that these words originated in the Bible. I remember these words mostly from the song, performed first by Pete Seeger in 1952 and later by the Byrds. These words carry great comfort, I believe, and remind us all that there is indeed a time for everything (even -46C!!).

Here are the words from Ecclesiastes III:

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

And, here are the words set to music by the Byrds. Enjoy!

What do you do to warm up to winter?

Deri Latimer is an expert in positive possibilities for people! A TEDx Speaker, Author, and Organizational consultant, Deri works with organizations who want to create happy and healthy workplaces for increased positivity, productivity and prosperity!

Be Here NOW

It’s holiday season. The stores are bustling. Homes are decorated. Friends and family are gathering to share in some holiday cheer. I love this time of year!

That is not the case for everyone. The holiday season can be one that brings dread. It might be filled with feelings of sadness and loneliness. For some, depression can take root due to unmet expectations, a recent loss, or the perception that you are the only one not having a great time.

This is the perfect time of year to Be Here NOW. To pause. To just ‘be’.

Resisting whatever you are experiencing, or perpetually wishing things were different than they are for you, can rob you of the present moment. This is a reminder that the present moment is the best gift you can give yourself today – and every day.

If you are already have a meditation practice, you already know what it can offer to you. If you do not, I invite you to begin with one minute of meditation each day through the holidays. (I bet you’ll be hooked …and will want to continue!)

My favorite time is in the morning. Awaken just a few minutes early. Sit up in bed (or stay lying down if you think you can be sure not to fall back asleep!), put your feel flat on the floor, back upright, hands comfortably in your lap. Set your timer for 1 minute. Close your eyes. Notice your breath. Simply observe your breath going in, breath going out. Just notice. When your timer rings, shut it off and sit for a few more seconds. In those few seconds, reflect on one thing to which you are looking forward for that day. Just one thing. See it. Hear it. Taste it. Feel it.

My friend and fellow Professional Speaker, Dave Carroll, wrote a beautiful song, which has inspired the title of this post. The lyrics are so eloquent. The message is powerful.

When There’s No Way Out There’s Still A Way Through

So Don’t Give Up Whatever You Do

Surrender To Moments And Things As They Are

From The Gaps In Your Catch-22’s

When There’s No Way Out There’s Still A Way Through

Take a listen. You’ll fall in love with his beautiful voice, and even more beautiful message.

Wrap up this priceless present to yourself. Be Here NOW.

Deri Latimer is an expert in positive possibilities for people! A TEDx Speaker, Author, and Organizational consultant, Deri works with organizations who want to create happy and healthy workplaces for increased positivity, productivity and prosperity!