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In 2023, Finland was declared to be the world's happiest country for the sixth year in a row. However, even this Nordic country has its own set of challenges.

Enter "Very Finnish Problems." Created by Joel Willans, a Brit living in Helsinki, it hilariously highlights the quirks and idiosyncrasies of local life, entertaining both Finns and international audiences alike.

From popular spring activities to unorthodox road signs, continue scrolling to check out some of the most popular memes that have recently appeared on this fun corner of the internet.

More info: Facebook | Instagram | TikTok

#1

Hyvää Naistenpäivää!

Hyvää Naistenpäivää!

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Verena
Community Member
2 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

A bit outdated. Sanna Marin (front) isn't the Prime Minister any more since 20th June 2023. She isn't a politician anymore, too.

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We managed to get in touch with Joel Willans, and he told us that everything began while he was dancing in The Dogstar, a nightclub in south London.

"I felt a tap on my shoulder. Turned round to see a beautiful blonde Finnish girl in a shimmering silver dress, smiling," Willans explained to Bored Panda.

"'Can you buy me a beer?' she asked. Needless to say, I said yes. A year later, Anna and I moved in together. We lived in London for a few years, with both of us working in advertising."

However, the couple eventually got disillusioned with their careers and went backpacking around the world for a year.

"Following the sunshine from Southeast Asia to Australia and South America, I'd purposely got return flights to the UK in July for a British summer, but the weather when we landed in Heathrow was battleship grey and drizzling," Willans recalled.

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"So, I suggested we go to Finland. When we arrived, it was the hottest summer in 200 years. 'Yay! Let's stay for a while,' I thought, expecting to remain just for the summer. That was over twenty years ago and I'm still here."

#6

Which One Is Your Fav? 😀

Which One Is Your Fav? 😀

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#7

When You Can Live In Forest For Summer 😀🌲

When You Can Live In Forest For Summer 😀🌲

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#8

Wishing President Sauli Niinistö A Swift Recovery From Covid. Here’s One Reason Why He’s So Well Liked #gentleman 🕺👌

Wishing President Sauli Niinistö A Swift Recovery From Covid. Here’s One Reason Why He’s So Well Liked #gentleman 🕺👌

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hi it's Norma
Community Member
2 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

We love Sauli! Hope our next president will be as great as he has been! (Vote for 10 !)

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#9

The Only Guide To Elevator Etiquette You'll Ever Need 😀

The Only Guide To Elevator Etiquette You'll Ever Need 😀

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Avid Bored Panda readers might remember one of our earlier pieces on 'Very Finnish Problems,' in which Joel, who works as a creative director at a digital marketing agency called Ink Tank Media, revealed that the social media project is the result of a wager.

"I bet one of my clients that I could create a Facebook page with 10K fans in a month without spending a penny," he then told us. "The bet was made during the Finnish winter, which was typically dark and very, very cold. The pavements were super slippery, and it was taking me ages to walk to work. I remember thinking how winter is trying to kill me and what a very Finnish problem that is."

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The Englishman in the far north then realized that he faced many more Finnish problems and launched the page, gaining nearly 20K fans in a month and winning the bet.

#10

When You Don’t Have A Police Reindeer

When You Don’t Have A Police Reindeer

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Adrian
Community Member
2 weeks ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Interesting and cute but what functions do they carry out?

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#11

It’s Amazing How Much Metaphors Tell You About A Country 😀

It’s Amazing How Much Metaphors Tell You About A Country 😀

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#12

Be Careful Out There Everyone! 🙂👍

Be Careful Out There Everyone! 🙂👍

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#13

History Shows Some Things Are Stronger Than They Look

History Shows Some Things Are Stronger Than They Look

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Max Fox
Community Member
2 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Joined the Axis forces in WWII, ends the war with a better human rights record than most Allied countries. Invades the USSR, loses, and still maintained independence and remained unaffiliated with the USSR.

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Now the Facebook page has over 517K followers, not to mention the hundreds of thousands of fans on other platforms.

"'Very Finnish Problems' content comes from a few sources. Approximately 75% is content I create, often inspired by real life or my two 'Very Finnish Problems' books," Willans said, letting us in on the process.

"Typically, that's short-form video for 'Very Finnish Problems' on Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube, and the occasional meme. My videos typically get hundreds of thousands of views, often millions."

#14

When You Can’t Control Your Emotions 😀

When You Can’t Control Your Emotions 😀

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#15

Hat Tip To Genius Kids Finishing School Today 😀👌

Hat Tip To Genius Kids Finishing School Today 😀👌

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"In the past, I had a team creating a wide variety of content, such as infographics, fun facts, illustrations, etc.," Willans added. "We also used these ideas for VFP merch in the 'Very Finnish Problems' shop. But now, because so much of VFP is video, we don't create as much new meme content."

"The rest comes from what people send me. There are now nearly 1.3 million 'Very Finnish Problems' fans, so I get sent a lot." The Helsinki-based Brit said there's also the VFP hangout, which is a Facebook group with 65K members. "Typically, we adapt if I decide to share it."

According to him, the criteria for sharing a particular snippet are quite simple: it basically boils down to whether Joel thinks VFP fans will like it and whether it will put a smile on people's faces. After 8 years of running the show, he's developed a pretty good feel for it.

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#19

When You Live In Finland And Don’t Like Metal 😀🤘

When You Live In Finland And Don’t Like Metal 😀🤘

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namesake
Community Member
2 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

She did wear the leather jacket. But the band shirt and the belt are photoshopped, unfortunately.

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As for the problems themselves, Willans said that in wintertime, the weather is the most talked-about. "As a result of the climate crisis, the whole country has been experiencing insanely cold temperatures, even worse than normal. I experienced hardcore arctic conditions skiing in Lapland and had a 'How I dress to ski in minus 28' (by wearing 6 layers) rack up 1.3 million views on Instagram. Another video comparing the names for winter storms got 11 million."

According to him, "The whole country has been caked in ice too, which makes walking tricky. So how Finnish winter tries to kill you is a theme that really resonates."

"In short, anything to do with extreme winter weather and how it messes with your life. Happily, we only have another 4 months to deal with before we get to enjoy our 15 minutes of summer," he added, laughing.

#22

When You Get Over-Excited By Sunshine 😎

When You Get Over-Excited By Sunshine 😎

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#23

Easy Mistake To Make 😀

Easy Mistake To Make 😀

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#24

And Has Much Longer Hair 😂

And Has Much Longer Hair 😂

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Sathe Wesker
Community Member
2 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Oh look, that one person didn’t show up to announce she is no longer prime minister.

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#25

When You Live In Lapland And You Like Sunsets

When You Live In Lapland And You Like Sunsets

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#26

Fact: 12 Cups A Day Keeps The Sadness At Bay 😀👌 How Many Do You Drink?

Fact: 12 Cups A Day Keeps The Sadness At Bay 😀👌 How Many Do You Drink?

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BrownTabby
Community Member
2 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

The assignment appears to be “consume something Japanese” so I’ll just eat Pocky instead.

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#27

From 1-10, How Strong Do You Go? 😀☕️☕️☕️☕️

From 1-10, How Strong Do You Go? 😀☕️☕️☕️☕️

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#30

When You’re A Little Over Optimistic 😀

When You’re A Little Over Optimistic 😀

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Eastendbird
Community Member
1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Went to visit my penfriend in Finland when I was 16. All her friends spoke English! They actually told me how lucky I was to speak English, "Nobody speaks Finnish and it's a b***h to learn."

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#32

When You’re The World’s Happiest Country Again And You Just Can’t Hide Your Excitement 😀🏆

When You’re The World’s Happiest Country Again And You Just Can’t Hide Your Excitement 😀🏆

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#33

When You Learn In Might Snow On May Day 🥶

When You Learn In Might Snow On May Day 🥶

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OutspokenHBW
Community Member
2 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

We get the same message in the northern United States, but it is delivered by a particularly qualified rodent.

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#34

How Many Bites Do You Have? 😀🦟🦟🦟

How Many Bites Do You Have? 😀🦟🦟🦟

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#35

Yet Another Reason Why It's Great Not To Be Living In The British Isles During The 780s 😀

Yet Another Reason Why It's Great Not To Be Living In The British Isles During The 780s 😀

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#39

Internet Show Me Maps That Best Highlight The Culture Of The U.k, Us And Finland

Internet Show Me Maps That Best Highlight The Culture Of The U.k, Us And Finland

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Maria Maria
Community Member
1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Those are only the PUBLIC saunas. Almost all homes have one. There are 3,5 million saunas in a country of 5,5 million.

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#41

What A Prime Minister Looks Like When Their Country Wins The Ice Hockey World Championship!! 🏆🏆🏆😀🍻 #leijonat

What A Prime Minister Looks Like When Their Country Wins The Ice Hockey World Championship!! 🏆🏆🏆😀🍻 #leijonat

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#42

When You Get Over-Excited By Spring Sunshine 😎☀️

When You Get Over-Excited By Spring Sunshine 😎☀️

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Charlie
Community Member
2 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This is true!!! After a long, dark winter, we tend to undress as soon as Celsius hits +.

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#43

Would You Ride This? 😀🦌

Would You Ride This? 😀🦌

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Tiny Dancer
Community Member
1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Do NOT try this at home, kids! This goofy-looking taxi will unalive ya with one toss of his antlers.

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#44

Be Thankful You Don’t Get A Visit From The Original Finnish Santa 🎅😀

Be Thankful You Don’t Get A Visit From The Original Finnish Santa 🎅😀

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Queeqec
Community Member
2 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

That's sad. CocaCola killed so many Christmas traditions, its a shame. Here, in Austria, the 'Christkindl' died due to that obese,bearded guy.

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#45

Every Car Driver In Finland This Morning ⛄️😀

Every Car Driver In Finland This Morning ⛄️😀

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#46

Say Moi To World’s Only Ninja Prime Minister 💪😀

Say Moi To World’s Only Ninja Prime Minister 💪😀

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#47

Who Can Relate? 😀

Who Can Relate? 😀

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Passerby
Community Member
2 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

The opposite happens when someone called you and you didn't pickup in time. Now you dread that phone call you missed. What if it was important? Would I need to call back? Oh the horror!

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#48

When This Is April ☃️

When This Is April ☃️

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MontanaMariner
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1 week ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I love Montana for it's winters, I've embraced the darkness. Keeps my soul ice cold, too.

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#49

Proof There Are Different Types Of Happiness 😀🏆🇫🇮

Proof There Are Different Types Of Happiness 😀🏆🇫🇮

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The Original Bruno
Community Member
1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

If Toby from the Office and Adam from Mythbusters had a child, that'd be him.

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#50

When Spring Trolls You Again 🥶

When Spring Trolls You Again 🥶

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Remi (He/Him)
Community Member
1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

The snow on midsummer is extra evil of the weather deities. (has happened twice to me)

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