Never too nippy to nap
"Fresh air does you good." We bandy this about and generally agree with it, but could it really be good for babies to nap outside — in subzero temperatures?
That’s precisely what many mothers in Scandinavia believe. And the fact that they will happily put their babies outside in temperatures as low as minus 15°C, and in icy or snowy conditions, has caused more than a flurry of attention in the UK.
It’s not just mums either — if you take a weekday walk past a nursery after lunch in Sweden, Finland or Norway, there’s nothing unusual about seeing a line of pushchairs or prams outside, containing happily snoozing and very well-wrapped up infants. Can you imagine that happening here?
There’s no such thing as bad weather
It feels so very odd to us because in this country we treat the weather as ‘The Enemy’. In fact, we spend so much time and put so much energy into moaning about our rotten and unpredictable weather that we forget to do much about protecting ourselves from it.
That’s the crucial difference between us and the Scandinavians — they prepare themselves for bad weather and we, bafflingly, don’t. There is indeed an old Swedish saying that sums up what they believe: “There is no bad weather, only bad clothing.”
Traditionally out cold
Nordic people think fresh air is good for children. Indeed, some of the nurseries actually have the children spend their entire day outside, not just at nap time, and it certainly doesn’t seem to do them any harm, as long as the children are safe and well protected from the weather. So who are we to disagree with the way they do things over there?
For Scandinavians, putting the kids to sleep outside is justifiable on health grounds — but it’s not only a question of justification. They do it that way because it’s part of their culture, a way of carrying on tradition, of feeling secure in who they are.
Understanding why people like doing things the way they do is a very important part of great customer relationships. At 14forty, ‘understanding you’ is one of our fundamental principles. It’s vitally important and gives us the insight we need to deliver facilities management that best meets your needs, and does so in a way that fits seamlessly into your organisation’s culture.
We find that focusing on understanding what you and your organisation want brings a breath of fresh air to your facilities management.
Lee H (2013), The babies who nap in sub-zero temperatures [online] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-21537988 (Accessed 5 May 2016)