Book: “The Finnish Way: Finding Courage, Wellness, and Happiness Through the Power of Sisu

“Sisu requires a positive exercise of will; it’s a muscle you exercise” – Katja Pantzar

I finished the book “The Finnish Way: Finding Courage, Wellness, and Happiness Through the Power of Sisu”. Sisu is a concept I learned about at the 3M half marathon in January (h/t @lruettimann), but it’s something I’m just getting around to reading more about.

This book is about getting back to basics. A reminder that as our lives get ever more complex, the solutions are relatively simple: move, spend time in nature, eat healthily, and have the courage to do hard things. As always, these reminders are often said easy and done hard (which is why we need to read about them all the time!)

Publisher’s Summary:

“An engaging and practical guided tour of the simple and nature-inspired ways that Finns stay happy and healthy–including the powerful concept of sisu, or everyday courage.

Forget hygge–it’s time to blow out the candles and get out into the world! Journalist Katja Pantzar did just that, taking the huge leap to move to the remote Nordic country of Finland. What she discovered there transformed her body, mind and spirit. In this engaging and practical guide, she shows readers how to embrace the “keep it simple and sensible” daily practices that make Finns one of the happiest populations in the world, year after year.

Topics include:

  • Movement as medicine: How walking, biking and swimming every day are good for what ails us–and best done outside the confines of a gym
  • Natural mood boosters: Cold water swimming, steamy saunas, and other ways to alleviate stress, anxiety, insomnia, and depression
  • Forest therapy: Why there’s no substitute for getting out into nature on a regular basis
  • Healthy eating: What the Nordic diet can teach us all about feeding body, mind and soul
  • The gift of sisu: Why Finns embrace a special form of courage, grit and determination as a national virtue – and how anyone can dig deeper to survive and thrive through tough times

If you’ve ever wondered if there’s a better, simpler way to find happiness and good health, look no further. The Finns have a word for that, and this empowering book shows us how to achieve it.”

Penguin Random House