Creative Solutions for Those Who Need a Good Night Sleep

Try Finland, Switzerland or an airplane seat

B Kean
5 min readFeb 13, 2022


Photo by green ant on Unsplash

Have you ever been to Finland? If you struggle with sleep, I recommend going there. It begins in the Helsinki airport. The thick wooden floors greedily absorb every molecule of sound barely leaving enough for the recipient ear.

I am not sure if the architect aspired to achieve that effect or perhaps it is just an unavoidable Finnish trait: mastering the art of silence. I have thought, upon exiting a plane after a long trip from the US, “so this is the place where sound, chaos even, goes on vacation. Relaxing in the deep, aromatic pine glades, strolling slowly across frozen lakes, complete noiseless-ness prevails.

So as to avoid any politically-correct accusations that I am somehow offending Finns, the ubiquitous and Zen-like silence does not apply to the people themselves — although it kind of does.

It’s almost impossible to not be more reticent, more contemplative in Finland; and, it is that quality that unabashedly fosters sleep: deliciously ensconced under the standard high-thread count sheet found in most hotel rooms, head set carefully on some of the best pillows on the planet, like little puffs of clouds, the most notorious insomniac will surely slip off unnoticed into the quietude for at least four or five hours.

Plane Seats

What led me to these thoughts today was an article I saw about Finnair’s new business class seats. They are called “revolutionary” because the seats don’t recline.

Most people who fly love to complain about the cramped quarters. I agree, it does seem cramped on planes in the US these days. Especially if the person next to you, due to size, should technically be purchasing two seats.

The “very large fellow passenger” problem is less seen when traveling internationally and even the planes in general, for the most part that is, seem a bit bigger when traveling on transatlantic flights. Given that I am well over six feet tall, you would think I would be in the group that complains about being cramped. Alas, I am not. Sure, there are times when I could use some extra room but one thing I almost never do is recline my chair; and if I do, usually it…



B Kean

The past holds the answers to today’s problems. “Be curious, not judgmental,” at least until you have all the facts. Think and stop watching cable news.