As the major powers compete to dominate the GDP, import-export development index, the Nordic countries take turns leading in the ranking: The happiest countries in the world.
This year, when the international happy world day passes, people are anxiously waiting to see if this year’s nation will dominate the gold table of happiness. I also muttered to guess which country is the place where people feel happiest, love life the most. Although happiness is hard to count, looking at this chart, people can also guess a part of life in each country with certain metrics.
No wonder this year, Finland has risen to the top of the rankings. This position used to belong to Denmark for a few years and in the top 10 there is always the presence of countries like Norway, Iceland, Sweden. What do the above countries have in common?
They are all Nordic countries.
If one remembers the United States or China as the world powers, Germany as a European economic leader, Japan is a nation of politeness and a stereotyped society, then Northern Europe leaves behind. What world?
Nordic legacies to the world are the philosophies of life; From the Taiga forests to the icy tundra, the happy tales of the Norse people warm the globe. What is in the philosophy of Nordic countries that make the lives of many people always full of joy in the middle of a long winter nights are longer than days and cold weather like that?
All over the world people want something more: Make more money, build a house, buy a car, with more Swedes – every time that thought comes in. Now, they remember one word again: Lagom. It is not just a word; it is a cultural feature of this country.
At the office, people work hard but don’t let work overwhelm other aspects of their life. Everything is just enough. Happiness with the Swedish people is a balance in life: balance between work and time spent with family, balance between affection for the other person and for yourself. When we know “enough,” life satisfaction emerges. While in many countries around the world, people are still quizzing each other, struggling with the question “enough” is like? For the Swedes, they need not try to contemplate “enough”, confusing themselves with the abstract question. People see Lagom: Enough is when we don’t have to consider whether weekends have time to spend with children? That need to make more money to live comfortably. Many people believe that life is inherently enough to balance itself,
In a busy world, Lagom represents a simple and balanced lifestyle when we don’t have FOMO – the fear that something will always miss.
There have been too many stories about Hygge – a way of life that has been passed down through the generations of Danes. Just type the word “Hygge” in Google, and you will see a lot of results about this lifestyle.
Millennials need Hygge like they need a brake to brake a slumping car: Hygge is a feeling, a state, a space that no longer has annoyances or a heavy emotion. A small cup of coffee in a morning, a cold winter night crouched in a blanket or a gentle fist in the sunny autumn afternoon. Hygge is a small joy in life that many people get sick of big and big things.
Hygge originates from the cold Northern Europe days when the winter days are disappointingly bleak; Out in the dark, people just want to sit in a warm room, with hot chocolate and wonderful music. Someone said Hygge is the value of family when considering the house as the center of happiness. We only see that feeling of cherishing those small, simple things when we return home with our family. Opening the door of the house, we see Hygge present before my eyes: both invisible and tangible. Loving chairs, small cups of tea, loved one’s waiting for dinner; Are they not the things we often forget, small but wonderful?
There are many people who have to go to the end of their life to realize “Hygge”: that life keeps dreaming of big things but then realize happiness hides in every small moment. Danes, fortunate to be taught these things since childhood …
“Hygge” has no synonyms in English or any other language, people see Hygge as “happiness from little things”. It sounds “small” but Hygge is like a spring that nurtures the spirit of the Danish people in all aspects of life: work, friendship, family, relationships …
The world pushed many people to the brink of despair, and then many people rose from the wilderness of life.
– Ernest Hemingway –
Ernest Hemingway once said something like that, and it is like the philosophy of life of many Finns. Sisu is a word that is almost impossible to completely explain into another language, I understand it as a powerful energy to help people overcome difficulties in life. Deep in the Finnish philosophy of life, sisu wants to emphasize that: People have more inner powers and extraordinary things than the naked eye can see.
In a country where darkness and cold embrace the lives of its people mostly of the year, sisu to find joy in life, transcending the harsh weather. The Finns joked that “There is no bad weather, only the clothes are not good enough” – they do not see the blizzard or the dark forest as a hindrance. They love nature, consider it a part of their lives, and despite the harsh weather, sisu philosophy helps them find happiness during adversity.
Finns are not afraid to jump in and swim in the icy river, cycling on a dark, dark day because they know they will get through it all. A peaceful life, proximity to nature or a simple lifestyle makes Finns happy, and sisu is the driving force that helps them to reach those happiness. Without such a strong living manifesto for generations, perhaps the Finns could never get through the darkness during the long winter.
Many people say that only when the economy develops, society sees people as the center, and modern life can be happy – no matter how many philosophies people have, but no life. Full material also forgets the illusory things. But those philosophies of life have been rooted in Nordic cultures for a long time when the Nordic economy was still a small dot on the map. I cannot deny it that the physical and social conditions are the factors that help shape a happy life, but the spiritual factor – “inner peace” is the key condition that creates happiness for each person.
And if there is a philosophy of happiness in Northern Europe that we should keep in mind, it is the story of the land of “ice and fire” Iceland. Þetta reddast: everything will be fine it will be okay. Icelanders believe that life always has a moving way so that we can solve all our problems.
The path to happiness is not an easy one for anyone. If Lagom, Hygge or Sisu is not enough for you to realize something meaningful in life, remember that Northern Europe still has a “legacy” as the Þetta reddast.
Everything will be fine!