A Swedish Workday


It does not matter whether you are working at the office, or you are on hourly payroll. The stress of work is enough to make you upset, down and tired. As the days progress, the distress (negative stress) starts accumulating and you wish to dump it down one weekend. However, if your weekend is quite similar, hectic or more stressful. You would enter in your workplace with a heavy load of misery, dejectedness, and tiredness. It is hard to accept that you would score your performance at the job better. You would be rather frustrated and would be up to leave the job anytime soon.

As a former worker at a fast-food restaurant and other odd jobs, I understand this stress as for how it felt. It affects you not only to your productivity but it’s dangerous to your health. As John Lubbock stated, ‘a day of worry is more exhausting than a week of work’.

What is the better way to work then? If there is then is it an individual act or whole company is involved in releasing the stress? I never had the answer before I worked in a Swedish environment. Sweden is from those countries where there is longest hours of sun in summers and the longest hours of the night in autumn and winters. Therefore the work culture has designed differently which can provide relief to the workers. There are a few points that would enlighten you:

  • The working hours in Sweden is almost the same i.e. 8 to 5. However, it does not matter where do you spend your time. You can rather work from home, coffee bar or at the office.
  • The work is project-based which means that it is important to accomplish the project at its time. Which helps people to keep working on their tasks which do not matter whether they are present at the office or not.
  • Fika break is an important thing to know if you are working in Sweden. Fika stands for a tea-coffee time where you sit with your colleagues and frankly talks about everything but not work. This eliminates most of the depression and distress from work.
  • Respecting the job is a beautiful example you might not find it anywhere. Swedish employers have a quite different place for their employees even someone is just Janitor, cook, receptionist. They are keen on talking to you frankly and willing to know what is right and whatnot.
  • Additionally, you are not considered as a procrastinator or lazy if you are not at the seat. It is quite natural and okay if you are trying to walk through and from or trying to talk to someone on phone in the lobby. It is important to have a break with your work for some minutes as it gives you an extra boost to concentrate on work better.

These are a few things that differ from an ordinary working environment. However, it is great to implement that makes the working environment less stressful and happier faces. It is true to say ‘the more you make people’s life easy, God will make your life easier’.

Talha Iftikhar


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