The last list of the Autumn section in Moorea Seal’s 52 Lists Project (although I’m pretty sure Autumn lasts until November) is about the things that make us feel comfy. It seems quite a fitting list for nestling into our months of hibernation.
In places this list felt quite similar to List 42- The things that make you feel peaceful; but I definitely found some different ideas flowing this time around. I was thinking about physical comfort and emotional comfort and how they can influence each other.
Coincidentally, a few days before posting this my sister taught me a new, and completely relevant, word- ‘hygge‘. Maybe it’s fate? Hygge, for anyone who hasn’t heard of it, is a Danish word. Much like some of the Japanese words I’ve introduced, there isn’t really a direct translation as the word is so in its native culture.
If I were to uproot the word and give a quick definition it would be the qualities of comfort and cosiness making up a feeling of contentment. I’ve linked an article at the bottom of this post if you want to read more- it’s definitely worth a look!
46/52: ‘LIST YOUR GREATEST COMFORTS’
I may not do it well, but when I do I feel so comfortable! Singing in the car and singing in the house when I’m pottering around add a whole other level of chill.
2. Writing Morning Pages
3. Hot Baths
4. Watching Les Misérables
Despite the emotional turmoil that this filmic masterpiece brings, there’s a definite comfort to watching. Perhaps it’s the music, the inspirational af songs or perhaps because I’ve watched it more than 20 times and can recite the entire script?
5. BIG FAT CRYING SESH
Following on from watching films literally labelled ‘miserable’- the cathartic release of having a massive crying sesh is something that brings me comfort.
It does us no good to keep everything to ourselves. Let’s be honest, people are like sponges and no matter how hard we try, our problems leak out of us in one way or another. As Dr Oh Ji-Wang states in my current favourite show; ‘It’s just like when you fart. If you hold it in 99 times and finally let it out, it could kill people.‘
6. Getting in out of the Rain
Changing into a dry pair of socks, getting some hot tea and sitting with a blanket after being out in the rain is heaven.
7. Writing Letters
8. Watching the Sunrise/ Sunset
9. Eating Scouse
This is a comfort I have yet to experience this year…. cough cough MUM…
11. Getting Something Off my Chest
12. Melted Chocolate
Melted chocolate is the reason that I don’t drink hot chocolate. The fact that it doesn’t taste like actually melted chocolate disappoints me every time!
13. Ticking Things Off my To-Do List
Comfort doesn’t have to be passive stillness. You can feel comforted by your own progression and the ease of a productive mind is something quite phenomenal.
I can feel the stress chipping away with every little tick off the to-do list. My lists remind me that, despite my panics, I am getting stuff done and making progress.
14. Playing PS2/Wii Games
Choppy graphics, goofy soundtracks and absolutely chaotic story lines don’t come with more recent consoles. There’s some kind of magic trapped in the older machines and I love revisit it.
15. Warm Hugs
You thought you’d found a post of mine that didn’t feature a cat didn’t you? You thought wrong! Hugs with mum, Beck, Rach, Ste, the cats or even my massive German Shepherd Charlie make me feel so comforted. The best feeling is shoving my head into Stan’s, my fat cat’s, belly for a big cuddle!
16. Acoustic Guitar
17. Getting Paid
The sweet sweet relief of pay day.
18. Reading Relevant Quotes
I find comfort in knowing that not only has someone else felt what I’ve felt or been through what I’ve been through, but that they experienced it so much that they were inspired to speak or write about it. Even better, when they offer up their wisdom and advice! Goodreads is my go to.
19. Old Cartoon Openings
20. Watering Plants
21. Gothic Literature
Reading about the darkness of the world wouldn’t bring everyone comfort, I know. But there’s a solidarity in knowing that writers, across the centuries, have been aware of and inspired by, the less jolly topics of life.
I fully believe that to be healthy and positive, we need to address the dark stuff; the bad things, the pain, the trauma, the embarrassing memories, whatever it is that ‘haunts’ us. It’s a part of us and so it deserves some air time.
23. The Smell of Tonkabean
24. Stephen King
Like the gothic literature, Stephen King probably wouldn’t make everyone’s list of comforting things, yet here he is. I find myself snuggling into his works, even the really terrifying ones.
It’s similar to the reasons that gothic literature made the list. King writes about the humanness of people- their darkness, their shortcomings and their strengths. Maybe it’s an acquired taste that I’ve just happened to acquire? Take IT, 1990. It’s one of the scariest films I’ve seen but I find comfort in it, in the realness of the characters and their friendships and their ability to overcome seemingly insurmountable fear. It gives me hope that I can overcome those everyday monsters in my life too.
Another reason is that it makes me think of my dad. My dad LOVED Stephen King, he read all of his books and his collection still floods my Kindle library to this day. Without my dad I wouldn’t know and use the acronym SSDD or visualise my mind as a library full of folders.
25. New Socks
26. Timecop1983 Drives
This is one that often gets taken for granted. The privilege that comes with the colour of my skin is a constant comfort, and it’s not a universal one. It’s an Invisible Knapsack that is often taken for granted, and even denied by some, and I can use it to make sure that this comfort is universal.
28. Central Heating
For those who don’t know what GGBO stands for, I have three hints!
- Absolutely GORGEOUS judge
30. Ste’s Jimny
Fighting between Radio City and Cannibal Corpse has become a strangely comforting part of my life. Navigator, coffee-holder, window-gazer and heating-manager are roles that I love. Being able to sit, physically and figuratively, in the passenger seat and slow my life down for five minutes or a few hours is a comfort that I owe to Ste, who just seems to know when I need to take a break.
31. Stable WiFi Connection
The other day I was talking to my best mate, Rachel, about high school. After a minute to think, we both agreed that we’d rather be the age we are now than going back to be 16. The reason? Self-confidence.
I’ve come to an area in my life where I am genuinely grounded and content with my existence. I know myself. Even if I don’t know much else, like where I’m going or what I want to do, I know myself and trust myself and that’s one of the greatest comforts I have.
35. Loved Ones
Time to read, time to think, time to sleep, time to learn, time to walk, time to cry, time to talk, time to run, time to grow, time to be well. Having time is a comfort and it’s one that deserves gratitude.
What contributes to your hygge? Whatever it is I hope you make space for it today- if it’s an afternoon nap, a hot morning brew or a cuddle with a loved one or a big fat crying session!
‘White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack’, Peggy McIntosh