How do people in Sweden rate their work-life balance?

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How do people in Sweden rate their work-life balance?
Sweden is often praised for generous policies for workers, including multiple kinds of long-term leave. File photo: Simon Paulin/

Sweden might be famed around the world for its working conditions, but for people in the Nordic nation, it's getting harder to balance work and free time, a new study shows.


A quarter of people working in Sweden say it is difficult to accommodate the demands of work and leisure time, according to a new study from Statistics Sweden.

In the year 2010-2011, only 18 percent of workers said that at least once a week they had difficulty balancing their job and personal life, but that figure had risen to 25 percent by 2016-2017. That amounts to around one million people across the country.

There was no significant gender difference in the answers, but on the other hand, respondents' work and family situation appeared to play a role.

READ ALSO: What you need to know about taking long-term leave from work in Sweden

People who worked full-time were more likely to experience an unequal work-life balance than part-time workers.

And among those who worked shifts or had irregular working hours, almost 40 percent said that it was difficult reconciling work and free time. This proportion was almost twice as high as the proportion of those who worked regular day-time hours.

Young children also had an impact, with parents of children under 13 years rating their work-life balance as worse than the average worker.

However, despite the increase, the majority of people still said that they were usually able to find a good balance between work and leisure time.



free time – fritid

to work full-time – arbeta heltid

a part-time worker – en deltidsarbetare

to work shifts – jobba skift

irregular working hours – oregelbundna arbetstider

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