Living the Swedish Lifestyle

The typical Swedish lifestyle encompasses many things; there is a great desire to be in nature, to be active and moving, to be healthy and happy, to have an open mind, to strive for equality and to experience old traditions to the fullest. To truly get the Swedish experience while you’re here you have to jump into the Swedish lifestyle.

Be Active

There is no doubt that Swedes love to be active. Whether it is outdoors or indoors, you can find Swedes working out hard all year long. Staying active through playing on sports teams, hiking outdoors, or going to the gym is an important part of Swedish society. Being active is supported through education and work; there are sport holidays at school and even financial contributions to the cost of working out from employers.

This can also be easily illustrated in the mode of transportation chosen by many Swedes. All age groups in Sweden frequently use a bike as a way to get around, even the elderly.  It is a great way to stay healthy from when you’re a child to your senior years.

Photo By: Kristin Follis

Photo By: Kristin Follis


Get Outside

Whether it’s out picking mushrooms, going for a run, or just sitting in the grass enjoying a fika, Swedes are always outside enjoying nature. In the winter everyone gets outdoors because of the many popular outdoor sports like skating or skiing. As soon as the snow starts to melt and the sun starts to shine everyone heads outdoors. Most of the warmer months are spent hiking through the forest or spending time by the lake. These strong ties to nature make it easy to understand the greater concern for the environment.

Just getting outdoors has a great effect, not only on your body, but also on your state of mind; there is nothing more calming then going on a long walk through the forest. And while your there pick some berries or mushrooms.  (For more on scavenging in the forest check out The Expat Blog)

Keep an Open Mind

To truly fit in you have to be open-minded. Sweden is especially known for its liberalism, equality and acceptance. Most people are calm and try to keep a positive attitude. Also, I would say most Swedes try to avoid conflict and deal with stressful situations in a non-confrontational way.

And, if any tension does exist simply do as the Swedes do and hop into a sauna; it is a great way to relieve any of that stress you might have and truly unwind.

  • Monica-USA

    It all sounds good now where  is my sauna  I  have way too much stress!! :o )

  • Carlosvalderom

    i wish be there in few years :_ but i need more information about to how to get it.

  • Anteyijohn

    My dream country.One day it will be a reality.

  • Trentfeltz5

    Very interesting! I hope to visit there someday. I’ve been learning the language for about 2 months now.

    • Kristin Follis

      That’s great! Learning the language is difficult, but it will be great to practice when you do make it to Sweden. Thanks for reading!

  • Liga-Krista Solima

    “to be healthy” – I also thought so, but the enormous amount of ready made frozen food buying (also families, not just singles) makes me wonder

    • Kristin Follis

      This is true! The demand for faster food seems to be increasing everywhere.

  • Erika Hoff Holmgren

    …might have been the most biased picture of Sweden I’ve ever heard. Since when were we the best country/people in the whole world? Open-minded indeed; that’s not entirely true. What is true, is that there’s a lot of fear and silent suffering – because we’re too bloody shy to tell anyone about our problems. That’s not what I’d call openminded.

    • Kristin Follis

      This is simply my experience from an outsiders perspective. I have never said you are the best country or people in the world, but in my experience people are much more open-minded than a lot of places I have lived before. Of course it is not perfect, there are still exists inequalities; however, in comparison to other places Sweden is still very open-minded, in my opinion.

      • rocknolla

        ..perhaps in the liberal student environment you hang out yes, but that can’t be said to represent the country very well overall in my opinion.
        students tend to be much more open minded than regular people no matter where you are.

    • rocknolla

      it’s not shyness, it’s called political correctness. it exists everywhere and isn’t very unique for sweden. fortunately the political climate has changed quite a bit over the last decade.

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  • student housing

    -Students that live right on campus in student housing, have higher graduations rates than their fellow classmates that reside off campus or at home. A number of factors could be the cause of this trend; one of the main factors is that there is no alcohol allowed on campus in student housing. With no alcohol permitted, partying is not as convenient as it could be living with friends off campus.

  • Michael

    Ahh, say more. I have to do a comparison between the Swedish hegemony an the Aboriginal Baakindji people of Australia.