19 Jun Finland is the happiest country in the world; but happiness isn’t their secret!
via BBC by Kate Leaver
A ballet dancer leaves her purse on a park bench. She walks away, absent-mindedly leaving behind the little bag with her money and belongings in it. Fifteen minutes later, she realises it’s missing. She does not panic; she does not get that sick feeling in the pit of her stomach. She knows it will be exactly where she left it, untouched. Sure enough, upon retracing her steps, she finds the purse and cheerfully picks it up.
Riddle me this: If a ballet dancer is this lackadaisical about her belongings, where in the world does she live?
Finland. Minna Tervamäki lives in Finland.
“I feel safe here. I feel for sure one of the main things people feel in Finland is safe,” said Tervamäki, who was nominated as the most positive person in Finland last year by a company called Positiivarit Oy, which make products to encourage positive thinking. “We trust each other.”
According to the 2018 World Happiness Report, based on research conducted by Gallup, Finland is the happiest country in the world. The Finns are not so sure about the result, though – being, as they are, a typically stoic sort of people.
“Nordic people, and the Finns in particular, are emotionally introverted,” explained Meik Wiking, CEO of the Happiness Research Institute, an independent think tank in Denmark that studies happiness and wellbeing. “They rarely rank highly on expressions of joy or anger – they are very different in that way from people from Latin America, for example, who have a more exuberant emotional expression as a people. For [the Finns], happiness is more about living a reserved, balanced and resilient life.”
Tervamäki agrees, saying, “I have very contradictory feelings about the happiness survey. Finnish people read it and laugh, like ‘What? Us?’. What comes to my mind is that Finnish people are content more than happy.”