As summer ended, the fall ushered in endless articles advising us all on what we need to buy for the new season — but also how we need to save, and how we can do all of these things while emanating the kind of Gwyneth Paltrow-glow that only comes from spending thousands of rupees.
The frenzy of the season and the pandemic can leave anyone feeling burnt out, oscillating between extremes of spending and thriftiness, and Netflix binges.
Fortunately, there’s the Swedish concept of “lagom.” Lagom is the idea of “just enough,” and it is often interpreted as embracing a middle ground in life. Frequently compared to the tale of Goldilocks, lagom encourages people to find spaces, moments, and ways of living that are not too much and not too little.
It’s about finding a state of being that’s just right.
“I think that in a time of excess, which many of us are currently living in, lagom is key to becoming more centered, happy, and balancing the pressures of everyday life,” Niels Ee`k, Swedish psychologist.
Lagom can apply to anything from getting work done to limiting smartphone use, according to Eék, calling it a “good principle to apply to balance out the various areas of your life.”
It can mean taking stock of your life and recalibrating priorities, allocating more or less time to an activity, or just making time for things like meditation.
Lagom is a lifestyle.
The term is elusive and not quite captured by words like “minimalism.”
Hordes of Swedes have found comfort in the way that it brings a sense of balance to their life. The term is especially prominent when it comes to interior decoration.
We believe in a minimalistic approach to design. Designing with the ‘lagom’ amount of items and proportions is something we apply to our design choices.
Those who would like to embrace lagom can apply these principles to their own homes and apartments by de-cluttering their living spaces, and donating unwanted or useless objects to charity. Again, there’s no need for extremes. If you find yourself shouting into the abyss “Does this object bring my joy?!” something has gone awry.
Once you have cleansed your belongings, bring in something new that makes you feel balanced, whether it’s a piece of furniture, a basket (do check out our home and living section on http://www.ziveli.in) that helps you stay organized, a new plant to brighten up a space, or a poster of a place you hope to visit in the new year.
Meditative practices often embrace this idea of “just enough,” and more specifically, the notion that you are already enough. Adding a daily meditation (or weekly meditation if you just can’t right now), can center your priorities.
Eék recommended bring lagom into daily life by changing the internal dialogue that we all have with ourselves.
“Instead of asking yourself ‘can I do better?’ or ‘should I try harder?’ ask yourself ‘is this good enough?’ and ‘have I done my best?’ This way, you will be more focused on finding the right balance, instead of simply pushing yourself towards something,” he said.
Frankly, this shift from continually pushing to achieve and to accumulate, to a more attainable and balanced center, is something we could all use right now.