A Swedish Custom Can Help When You’re Burned Out

Feeling a little burned out lately? A vacation would be a nice fix, but when you just need a little pick-me-up, a Swedish custom called lillördag could do the trick. It means little Saturday and it involves giving yourself a little break after work on Wednesdays. The idea is to do something fun midweek to recharge yourself for the two more workdays before the weekend.

Hanna Hedenius, who lives near Stockholm, Sweden, explains that the custom started with people who worked on farms or as maids in homes and couldn’t take the weekends off, so they took Wednesday night off instead. These days, it’s about treating yourself to something you enjoy, like a glass of prosecco or ice cream. People don't get off work early and it’s not a day off from after-school activities, but it is a good excuse for a mini celebration to give you a boost to make the rest of the week easier to deal with.

The important thing with lillördag is actually taking a break from work, so eating that ice cream while answering a few more work emails on your phone is a no. A revitalizing ritual is ideal to give your brain the break it needs and these are some ideas to get you started:

  • Make a simple meat, cheese, and fruit plate for dinner
  • Sit outside and enjoy the summer sunset
  • Add candles or flowers to your table
  • Enjoy a cup of coffee or tea
  • Spend time in nature


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