Finns know how to slow down and calm the mind, which is one of the reasons Finland has just been named the happiest country in the world for the third year running.
To help agents find their calm while self-isolating, Visit Finland has shared some tips on how to focus on your health and wellbeing when you're at home.
Tip 1: Start with a cold shower
In Finland, plunging into icy water is a regular ritual for many. Not only is it refreshing, it also helps to get the circulation flowing and produces the mood-balancing hormones serotonin and dopamine, helping to make you feel happy.
The easiest way to replicate this at home is to take an ice-cold shower for a couple of minutes in the morning. Channel your 'Sisu', a Finnish concept meaning grit and determination, and just do it! You can alternate cold and warm showers to get a sauna feeling and acheive better blood circulation.
Tip 2: Relax by reading
Finland is known as a literary nation and its people are among the world’s most enthusiastic users of public libraries, borrowing close to 68 million books a year.
Moomins are probably the most known and adored Finnish literary icon. The stories of these white, hippo-like characters created by writer and artist Tove Jansson can be found in every bookshop and library in Finland.
Research shows that reading makes us feel better and fills us with positivity. It also helps with depression, improves the functioning of the brain and reduces the chances of developing Alzheimers. So, take a break from social media and pick up a book instead.
Tip 3: Listen to forest sounds
Finnish people spend a lot of time in forests, believing that this roots them and helps them remember who they are and where they come from. Even just the sounds associated with nature can significantly relieve stress and relax the mind.
Visit Finland has created an imaginary trip to the Finnish forest using the relaxing sounds of Finnish Lapland. So close your eyes, stretch yourself out on the sofa and be transported to a forest clearing with the Scapes album on Spotify, available here.
Tip 4: Bake a cinnamon bun
Well you can't visit a cafe for that break time treat, but why not bake one yourself? Baking can increase a feeling of wellbeing and contributes to stress relief.
In Finland coffee and a cinnamon bun or 'pullakahvit' is a tradition and a highlight of the day. The cinnamon buns are baked Finnish style with a dash of cardamom and enjoyed with a cup of coffee or a glass of milk.
To bake, simply follow this recipe - and good luck getting hold of the ingredients!
Tip 5: Visit a virtual gallery
The Finns use art to calm the mind and transport their thoughts to a stress-free place.
Finland has over 55 art museums and numerous art galleries. Its contemporary art scene embraces everything from experimental artist-run initiatives to commercial galleries and flagship art institutions. Take a virtual trip from your own sofa to the Finnish museums to understand how art is a tool for happiness.
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