I am 24- year old girl who has spent 22 years of my life in Finland. When I was 17, I lived one year in the USA and when I was 20, I spent one year in Italy. I used to think grass was greener in those places, but luckily I was very wrong !
To me Finnishess put in three words sounds something like this:
peace, purity & home made carelian pies.
Finnish culture in my opinion consists of independence and freedom, mutual respect for each other and winter sports. It also consists of nightless nights, swimming in the clearest lakes and going to sauna in the summer. It consists of the strong cold freeze and northern light spotting in mid- January. Hands and cheeks are frozen and we complain about it, but we secretly like it.
In my opinion, we are people who have really well understood the magnificence of our nature. We just sometimes forget that our time has a limit here. We are people who respect other people so much, that we rarely want to bother their morning walk by saying “good morning”, they might get uncomfortable or worse, we might, if they don’t answer… Sometimes we have the courage to do it and it’s actually pretty exciting! We love spending evenings by the fireplace while mosquitoes suck the living – out of us and again we complain, but secretly like it because it’s so familiar to us. But we do need to have the mosquito spray available, always. The only problem is, that sometimes we get stuck on trying to find people to share everything with and rarely realize that we have those people already – at least some of the most important ones!!
We, Finnish people, sometimes have a tendency to think in such ways that are pretty self destructive. It might be because of stress or pressure from anywhere – social media, future or the whole society. Or because of the difficulty to express feelings as we are taught to be quite independent and just suck it up. But we might do it anyways, in the end we live in a country where the sunlight is quite limited and seasonal depression is a real thing.
If I compare our culture and attitudes with the places that I’ve lived in, I’d say we 1000% win. We are the most honest people. Finnish attitude towards others is respectful, you can’t get fooled. We like to be polite and nice to each other but nobody can do that for too long. We do enjoy it when people are purely nice back to us. But we don’t brag, indulge or pamper too much, make fake friendships nor show off in real life. And if someone does, it is almost immediately spotted by a Finn and labeled as not good behavior.
But we love to be Finnish, we are very proud and wouldn’t change it. Nothing can win the real authentic, pure, beautiful advanced but pretty plain life that we have here. In here everything is actually real and it’s so easy to live like that. No fake smiles, no difficulty to search for a forest to go for a walk, no such dangers as in the big world and most importantly, pretty smart and educated people who also love to celebrate!
I love love love Finland!