Step 1: Invite a friend, family member, coworker or person you’d like to get to know.
People often fear this step for some reason, but it’s so simple. All you need to do is say, “Hey, I just read about this new Swedish thing called Fika. It’s basically a 15 minute coffee break that we would share together. Do you have some time today or this week to try it out? It seems like a lot of fun.” Or you could go for the classic, “Do you want to grab some coffee?” Get creative! Don’t tell yourself no before somebody else can. Plus, people often appreciate being asked, even if they can’t take you up on the offer right then. Go for it! What do you really have to lose?
Step 2: Sit down in a comfortable place and turn off all technology.
Find a spot where you won’t be constantly interrupted by other people, loud music or big TVs. Grab a seat and silence your phones. If you’re showing somebody else how to Fika for the first time, they might need some gentle guidance into this whole technology-free idea. Try explaining that the Swedish tradition is to be tech-free for these 15 minutes, at least, and try to do this at the very beginning before you have to “correct” your Fika partners. That can be quite uncomfortable, and Fika is supposed to be comfortable and fun above all else.
Step 3: Have some coffee and snacks.
This isn’t just about the food, it’s actually meant to create an atmosphere of trust and connection on a primal level. There’s a reason we use the term “break bread” to describe connecting and building relationships -- there’s an instinctual aversion to eating in uncomfortable situations. So, by eating and drinking with somebody, we show ourselves that this is a safe time for connection and joy. Don’t overthink it! Grab some tasty coffee -- or tea, juice, kombucha, whatever non-alcoholic drink you like -- and a snack, and enjoy!
Step 4: Have a conversation about something other than business, politics or the economy. Keep it light, fun and uplifting at Fika.
Fika is not the time to complain, commiserate or solve problems. It’s a time to have fun and get to know somebody else! Companies make it a point to avoid talking shop when they’re at Fika. The point is to get to know somebody on a personal level, beyond their political, economic or professional personalities.
Step 5: After 15 minutes, wrap it up and go back to your day feeling refreshed and inspired.
One reason people are hesitant to have social meetings is a fear of wasting too much time. So, if you invite somebody to Fika, it’s a good idea to hold yourselves to the 15-minute timeframe. That way, neither you nor your partner have to worry about whether or not you’ll have time. If you want to keep going, that is a great sign! Schedule another Fika, or another activity that you could share. Fika is supposed to be the spark in your friendship!