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How happy are Americans? Not as happy as Finns

How happy are Americans? Not as happy as Finns
Posted at 12:16 PM, Mar 20, 2023

The World Happiness Report was released on Monday, indicating that Finland is the happiest nation in the world out of 137 measured. 

War-torn nations tended to be among the least happy nations in the world. 

“Average happiness and our country rankings, for emotions as well as life evaluations, have been remarkably stable during the three COVID-19 years,” said John Helliwell, a Canadian economist and co-author of the report. “Changes in rankings that have taken place have been continuations of longer-term trends, such as the increases seen in the rankings of the three Baltic countries. Even during these difficult years, positive emotions have remained twice as prevalent as negative ones, and feelings of positive social support twice as strong as those of loneliness.”

Finland remained the happiest nation in the world for the sixth consecutive year. Afghanistan remained the last happy nation in the world. 

The report used six different factors to determine happiness: GDP per capita, social support, healthy life expectancy, freedom to make life choices, generosity, and freedom from corruption. In top nations, these factors actually increased following the pandemic, said report author Lara Aknin.

“This year’s report features many interesting insights,” said Aknin, “but one that I find particularly interesting and heartening has to do with pro-sociality. For a second year, we see that various forms of everyday kindness, such as helping a stranger, donating to charity, and volunteering, are above pre-pandemic levels. Acts of kindness have been shown to both lead to and stem from greater happiness.”

The top 15 countries are:

1. Finland

2. Denmark

3. Iceland

4. Israel

5. Netherlands

6. Sweden

7. Norway

8 Switzerland

9. Luxembourg

10. New Zealand

11. Austria

12. Australia

13. Canada

14. Ireland

15. United States

The report’s complete findings are available online.