The first two years in Seattle were rough. I focused on the clouds and blamed parts of life and the clouds on “Seasonal Affective Disorder.” Most connect Seattle’s high suicide rate with the climate, and no doubt, people are affected by the weather. Humans need the sun and our biological clock known as the circadian rhythm is affected by light and dark situations.
After two years of living in Seattle, I took my reiki certification and was all sorts of pumped and jacked up on energy. I felt like I was on a holistic “Roid-Rage” from too much life force energy flowing throughout my body. All of a sudden, I stopped focusing on the weather and I did not notice or recognize that it rained ten days in a row. This mindset stuck with me until I moved to Germany where I (daily) pray to the Sun Gods (and the weatherman) to please have a sunny July and August. (Apparently, my vibration must be too low as they are not listening to me – always).
But, you know who has worse weather? The Scandinavian countries (and Iceland – Although not Scandinavian it is one cloudy mess over there). And do you know what cultures are the happiest in the world? The Scandinavian countries.
I’ve visited Finland and Denmark and let me tell you, these people suffer through months of clouds and misty rain with three weeks of complete darkness during the winter solstice. In fact, I’m sure these people don’t even know what a real summer is unless they vacation in Spain and Greece. On August 12, 2015, Oslo, Norway’s temperature is a high of 64-degrees and a low of 48-degrees Fahrenheit.
Why are these people so happy when the weather is so crappy?
It’s simple, it’s about their mindset and social values. It’s no secret that Scandinavia is continuously rated as the happiest countries in the world. In Ibiza, I met two Americans and a Danish guy on a bus going to Destino’s opening party with Luciano. We joked about Denmark’s shitty weather pattern, but their thriving happiness and stable culture. The Dane mentioned that it is the culture’s way or belief to keep the country strong and stable. He said that they earn livable incomes and pay hefty taxes to better society such as taxes bettering the education system. It’s a nationwide vision, not a “what’s in it for me” viewpoint to pay staff low wages in order for the higher ups to profit. Did I forget the vacation time? That lucky Danish earns five to seven weeks of paid vacation per year.
I know of an American journalist who often visits Copenhagen for his stories. He mentioned that the low-skilled McDonald jobs convert to about 27 US dollars per hour. I near fainted in disbelief thinking about my mom who waitressed most of my childhood making two-dollars per hour. Some slow days she made 36-dollars in tips while on a six hour work shift. So which life sounds more depressing? And wouldn’t that type of hard labor / struggle be more depressing in darker months?
Much of Scandinavia pays high taxes, but it is a “we’re in it together” attitude to keep society functioning. One German teacher told me that Norway and Sweden prizes teachers on the same level as a doctor and lawyer. She explained that teaching jobs are competitive and they are very selective with who teaches their kids.
It’s a mindset difference and a cultural way of life. Their social system takes care of people and it functions beautifully. It seems that most of the world can benefit from this type of mentality. And people too can learn from this mindset. So, maybe the real issue at hand is not the weather but actually how good social values are. I mean, wouldn’t you be happy in a country where you know you couldn’t become homeless overnight? Or get slapped with a thirty thousand dollar medical bill because you don’t have health insurance? I guess it’s some food for thought. Although Scandinavia prepares for this weather with Vitamin D office lights, the mindset about life differs and those who can't handle it flee and move to a sunnier climate.
Here are some recent articles about the happiest countries in the world.