I have to admit that when I first moved to Norway I was still in "British mode" and it took a few years to get into a Nordic routine. But much of what I saw and experienced of Norway and the Nordic way of life fitted very nicely with what I valued in my own life previous to that. I loved to get up early and get started on the important stuff in the morning, I loved being out in nature and I appreciated life's simple pleasures.
If you are looking to add a bit of Nordic routine to your life, then I have 5 simple and easy ways that you can introduce right now. They are all things that most people here in the Nordic countries do without even thinking and they make a difference to our lives in easy to implement ways.
Get up early
Life starts early in Norway and Scandinavia and especially in the summer when we have so little night. Starting early really sets us up for a positive day and if you can do it, then I applaud you! If you are not a morning person already you might need to work up to this one, but a few minutes earlier each day and you will soon be getting up at 6am.
Eat seasonally and simply through the week
I am sure you already know that Nordic cuisine is unfussy, and on the whole fairly traditional. Not traditional in a fuddy, old fashioned way, but holding true to the idea that simple, wholesome and good quality ingredients can be the stars of any dish and we don't need to pack it full of 20 ingredients to make it taste good. A handful of good ingredients can be the most delicious thing in the world. Combine that with eating with the seasons and you have the makings of a great and varied diet.
Limit treats like candies and alcohol for a certain day
Have you heard of Lille lørdag? It's a Wednesday habit of treating ourselves. We keep candy and sweet treats for specific days and only enjoy them then. We are not penalising ourselves, but treating ourselves on a certain day. It gives us something to look forward to but also helps us keep on track with healthy eating.
Get outside at the weekend
This is something that most people who live in the Nordic countries do from a very early age. Everyone seems to appreciate how important the outdoors and nature is and the benefits it has on our health. So to be truly Nordic and get some of that Nordic routine you need to get outside!
Celebrate the end of the week
We have a thing here in the Nordics called "fredagskos". It's a celebration of the end of the week and something we can embrace wherever we are in the world. Choose an activity that makes you happy and keep it for the end of the week as a way to mark the start of the weekend and to say "yay, I got this far".
These are things we do without thinking much about it in the Nordics. But they are also great ways to inject a little bit of health and gratitude into our lives. Some of the best ways to stay happy are the simplest and to remind ourselves that we do actually have aspects of our lives that are great.