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How to live frugally: lagom

written by Emma 17th January 2017

Forget hygge, 2017 is all about lagom. (yay, another Scandinavian
word we don’t know how to pronounce!) Roughly translating as ‘not too much, not
too little, just right’, lagom is the art of living frugally, a pretty
essential life skill if, like me, you’ve still got a £9000 student loan to
repay. Lagom is a way of life that encourages you to be environmentally
friendly, financially economical and healthy. It’s certainly not as fun as
hygge, which, by the way, I readily embraced by purchasing new snuggly socks and an
endless supply of mulled wine. But apparently January is all about new starts
blah blah and I have a whacking great tax bill to pay, so I for one, am becoming lagom.

It’s quite difficult to think of stuff to do that doesn’t involve a lot of money, so here are some ideas of how to live lagomly, and yes, I have made that word up:

1. Made my own pizzas

I have a terrible habit of going out for dinner ALL the
time. I make great plans to boil down lentils, spinach and kale into some sort of healthy mush and yet, before you know it, I’ve got a dim sum in
each cheek and Katsu curry dripping down my chin. But I’ve realised that
although eating out is super convenient, it’s also bloody expensive, and half
the time what you have out isn’t as nice as what you could cook at home! So the
other evening I made my own pizzas – dough and all.

2. Went for a walk

I absolutely love going for a walk when it’s cold, crisp and
sunny to then return home and snuggle up with a hot chocolate. I went for a
winter walk on the beach the other day and it made me question why I don’t do
it more often. I love the UK. I think it’s beautiful, so get out there and make
the most of it without spending a penny!

3. Used my gym membership (lol)

Sometimes I forget that I pay £30 a month to be a member of
a gym. But then suddenly last week I remembered (miraculous) so I decided to
go. And I had a great time! Although furious that the hot tub wasn’t working, I
did 10 lengths in the pool (watch out Michael Phelps) and then sat in the sauna
for half an hour. It was glorious. Plus then I showered in water I’m not billed
for! Could life get any better?

4. Started a journal

At some point I’ll do a blog about my bullet journal, but
honestly it is my favourite new thing. Yes you need to buy a notebook and a
fancy array of coloured pens, but then you’ve got a year of journal-writing
fun! And there’s nothing funner than planning!

5. Rearranged my bedroom

I have a beautiful Roberts Radio that I never listen to,
which, considering what I do for a living, is really embarrassing. For some reason
I’d put it in a stupid place where the antennae didn’t get any signal, so, when
I realised how ridiculous it was, I decided to rearrange my room. And that kind
of turned into a big old sort out. It’s also nice to make your bedroom a little project: making bunting, picking up ring stands and vintage mirrors in charity shops, and framing photos that you’ve had lying around for a while! 

In general, hygge is definitely more fun than lagom, but lagom is about long-term fun: saving up those pennies for a house, getting a fit and healthy mind and body, appreciating the smaller things in life without having huge extravagances. So although we all have little splurges occasionally, it’s good to have lagom at the back of your mind. 

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