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Philosophy and meaning behind the swedish word LAGOM (history + examples)

meaning of Swedish word lagom + examples

Lagom - a Swedish word and philosophy to boost happiness and to help equality and can aid to tackle climate change if this mindset gets adopted by other countries, too.
The word ,lagom, comes from Sweden and has the translation as ,just enough, but it has a more wide meaning than the English translation and you can transfer it to all aspects of life.
Sweden is one of the countries where the division between the rich and the poor is not as stark as in other countries (might because of the high taxes and good welfare system). But also, people are not raised to stick out and to ,show off,. Most of the population strives for a more happy and healthy life with a focus on quality before quantity.
They do not strive for a too demanding career that would provide an abundance of money and stress but a quality one that simply provides them with just enough life which will cover all important aspects in life and always setting some time aside for ,fika, (another Swedish tradition of coffee and a sweet nut done in a more ,proper, way than rest of the world). Simply striving for a well-balanced life, in my opinion. This might also be behind why swedes live longer (82.5 years expectancy for women in Sweden and 72 worldwide).
Why sitting at your desk at work till late evening if you can instead bike back home when there is still light and have time for a nice stroll along the coast, lake, forest and watch the sundown and enjoying a nice ,fika, (the word for ,snack time, which is taken very seriously here). It is much better for your soul, body, mind, and relationships with your friends and family.
This view is based on 8 years of living in this northern country. I feel that they retain a very strong bond and respect for their country (having a house with a view over the lake and owning a boat on the sea is the popular life dream here).
,, To live LAGOM,, is to strike a healthy balance with the world around us and with our life.
You will find, that if you adopt this way of life/ philosophy it will help to result in a much more sustainable, healthy and cost-saving/conscious life at home.
For example, Swedes have reduced their air travel for holidays because they are aware of climate change and try to do their bit. Also, veganism, vegetarianism, and flexitarianism are on a huge rise here. As the word lagom is used in all aspects of life.
To live lagom, we can implement for example in these aspects of life:
The word lagom was originally created in the times of hunger in Sweden many, many years ago (13th century to be more exact) where the population was encouraged that even if they still had plenty themself they were supposed to think of others and have just enough for themself so others would not starve. Eating lagom is still important until today as the effect of a bad diet can massively affect our health, gut bacteria, happiness, energy levels, and overall mood. So, eat lagom, please.
Instead of being at home relaxing, try to get outdoors when you have time. Alone or with a loved one. Have some little snack with you and stop and sit down at a place of choice (beautiful park, forest, view) and enjoy the moment and refreshment. You will feel much more rested and happy.
Try to stop being self-obsessed and petty. Look at things from a perspective and the with the view of the better good for all. Try to find a good angle for each situation. There is almost always something to be thankful for.
During your meal times do something special, light a candle, play classical music, eat with your finer plates and glasses, eat outdoors. Enjoy the moment. Yes, this means for breakfast, too.
Stop chasing fast fashion (it still always runs away) and just keep your absolutely favorite items, which suits your complexion, frame and are timeless and of high quality. The stress of what to wear will be gone and you will enjoy each outfit as all the items left will be your favorite. Also, fast fashion is decimating our world, please be mindful and shop lagom.
Sit back, observe and listen. You will make connections between places, history, cultures, people, animals, and earth. Everything will make more sense and you will notice you become much more understanding and accepting of others. As my favorite quote is: ,,The mind is like a parachute, it only works when it is open.,,
Help others. Even if they will never have the opportunity to help you back. It will make them happy and you happy, too.
Create your own traditions. They truly are a big key to happiness and serenity in your mind.
If I had to put it in fewer words to summarise, then that it is mostly the simple things in life that bring us the most joy, contentment, health, and happiness. It is currently under threat of consumerism as PR firms are being paid millions and millions to make us chase,things, which has never led to real fulfillment nor true happiness.
Mother Earth will thank you and your soul will, too. Live ,,LAGOM,,.


  1. This is a beautiful post, filled with so much great information.

  2. Aaaww, thank you for your kind words 🙏🏽I am over the moon you enjoyed it :)