Last year, it was all about hygge – the Danish art of cosiness and contentment. This winter, however, we’ll all be enjoying ‘fredagsmys’ which means ‘cosy Fridays’.
This Swedish concept is fundamentally about having a relaxing and indulgent evening after a hard working week. Quite frankly, who can be bothered to go for drinks after work in the depths of November when you could instead be snuggling up, enjoying some hearty food and just generally de-stressing?
“Partying is for Saturdays – on Fridays we stay in,” explains the website Scandikitchen. There’s even a song about it!
Here’s how you can get your ‘fredagsmys’ fix this winter like a real Swede:
1. Treat yourself to comfort food
Part of ‘fredagsmys’ is to indulge in junk food and anything else that will fill you up (savoury or sweet is fine). The Swedish approach to food is also very much in favour of seasonal, local and organic produce. “Eating foods when in season means that you’ll be eating the way nature intended it. Summer fruits and vegetables tend to contain higher amounts of water, which dilutes their nutrient content. Compare this to winter fruits and veggies and you’ll find they’re richer in nutrients such as vitamin C and contain more valuable fibre,” explains nutritionist Cassandra Barns.
And because the average sugary snack can send your mood plummeting after the initial ‘hit’ has passed, try treats like dark chocolate – especially made with raw cacao – which can actually have longer-lasting benefits for your mood. “If you love the taste of chocolate, just indulging in your favourite treat can release endorphins in the brain. And with dark chocolate, you’re getting the endorphin hit without the sugar overload,” says Cassandra.
2. Unplug from social media
Try to be strict with yourself on how many hours you’re plugged in to social media. For example, rather than sitting on Instagram or Facebook for the whole evening, try watching a film with the family, snuggling down with a book or maybe even crack open the Monopoly (wahey!).
3. Dress for the weather
The Swedes have a saying: there’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing. So make it a priority to wrap up when the colder weather hits. “During the winter months our extremities, such as our feet tend to suffer the most from the cold. It’s really important to keep your feet well insulated during this time,” explains podiatrist Michael Ratcliffe.
4. Two is better than one
A common custom for many Swedes is having two separate duvets on a double bed, as opposed to playing tug of war in the middle of the night trying to get your share back. If this is a common issue in your household, why not give the two separate duvets a go?
5. Put things into perspective
Achieving a good work/life balance is a significant part of the Swedish culture and they’ve even trialed a six-hour working day. To avoid feeling overwhelmed try to prioritise what actually needs to be done and then what can wait until tomorrow, everyone needs some time out!