5 questions with... Merja Kyllönen

Sauna, accordeon and laughter.

Merja Kyllönen | Photo credit: European Parliament audiovisual

1. How would you describe your political/leadership style in three words?
Passionate. What I do, I do with my full heart. Some might say I am that woman who wears flower hats and talks funny, but behind all of that, I take my work very seriously. I also want to live in love and peace with my colleagues. Issues can argue but human beings should not.
Humorous. Work doesn't need to be too serious. Serious business is serious business but life is easier if you can also laugh at yourself. And I have learnt that in many cases, humour is a way of easing up difficult situations and conflicts.
Workaholic. I just love to work. I get into issues and I want to find answers and solutions. I love to challenge myself and my team. Sitting around waiting for things to happen is boring. I want to make things happen.


2. What is the smallest change you have made in your career that has had the biggest positive result? 
I have tried to learn to stop and unwind for a minute and take little quiet moments, when I either let my thinking fly or try to keep my mind open without constant thinking. This has given me a lot of peacefulness and an open mind, which help me relax.


3. What one item would you save from your house or apartment/ house if it was on fire?
My dogs of course (even though they are not items) and a table-clock maybe, if I have time for that.


4. Is there anything you have personally achieved or done that would surprise people?
I have played the accordion for many years.


5. What do you do in your free time to relax and unwind?
I love to wander in the forest with my dogs and after that go to the sauna, meditate and relax. The sauna is like my church - a holy, quiet place.


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