UK is the 9th Happiest Country in the World

By Sharon Moore on October 24, 2011

UK is the 9th Happiest Country in the World. The economic recession that hit the global market made many people sad.  While many Brits are still suffering from stress and depression, UK and some other European countries made it to the top 10 happiest countries in the world.  This is according to the report from the Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD), a community of 30 democratic countries that deal in conducting social statistics, Denmark is the happiest country in the world followed by Finland and Netherlands.

How did the OECD measure the satisfaction rate of people from these countries?

To obtain the results, OECD made use of the poll results conducted by the Gallup World Poll.  The said organization surveyed a number of people (less than 1,000 respondents) from 140 countries.  Simple questions were asked to gauge how they perceive life.  Respondents were asked to rate their life’s satisfaction on a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being the highest).  Danish has an average satisfaction rate of 7.8, making them top the charts.

OECD provided several reasons why most people from the European nations were happy about their lives despite the economic recession.

1. Good Health Makes People Happy

According to the senior economist of OECD, Social Policy Division, good health plays a major role in making people happy.  It is to be noted that European countries have the highest life expectancy rate.  The clean environment, minimal pollution, and proper sanitation contribute a lot in achieving good health.

2. Money is NOT the main source of happiness

On the OECD report, it can be noticed that countries that topped the happiest places on earth have the highest gross domestic product (GDP).  Denmark has a very high GDP per capita which reached $68,000.  But the, fortune alone does not make people completely happy.  Just like in the case of Norway.  This country has a GDP per capita of $98,822 which is way higher than Denmark.  Yet, it only ranked 9th.

3. Work – Life Balance

Employment also plays a big role in making people happy.  Having a job would mean being able to provide for one’s needs and ability to build social relationships with others.  However, it is also important that an individual’s personal life is well-balanced with his/her work life.  Balancing life and work is very important in order for people to live happier.  Basically, an individual works in order to live and be happy.  He/she doesn’t live to work.  In the countries that were included in the top 10 happiest places in the world, people work for no more than 37 hours a week.  Of course, the economic situation is contributory to this.  In most countries that are in the lowest ranks, people work for more than 40 hours per week.

Some other factors that affect the life’s satisfaction rate of individuals are a clean and healthy environment, strong relationships with their family and friends, and active political participations.

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