Ranking the Happiest States in America

How do you quantify happiness? Well, the team over at Wallethub certainly tried!

They ranked all 50 states based on factors like work environment, leisure time, and emotional and physical well-being.

Their ranking pulls data from dozens of studies — but you still may not agree with the results:

1. Hawaii

Is this really a surprise? Hawaii is an archipelago of paradise. Residents are paid well and have plenty of leisure time to spend on breathtaking beaches and island cuisine.

2. Utah

Utah is a state that probably doesn’t come to mind when you think “happy”. However, it’s a natural paradise too. It’s filled with desserts, snowy canyons, and a major trade hub in Salt Lake City.

3. Minnesota

Despite brutal winters and civil unrest, Minnesota claims the highest spot for states on the East Coast.

4. New Jersey

The Garden State gets a bad wrap, but its residents are apparently very happy to be there!

5. Maryland

There’s just something about the name Maryland — or should we say “Merry”-land — because people are happy to call it home.

6. California

The Golden State has great weather, beaches, major cities, and a high quality of life. High rates of pollution likely kept California from claiming a higher spot on this list.

7. North Dakota

The most well known Dakota is still probably one of the least known states. However, North Dakota is a utopia of farmland, mountains, and rolling hills. The residents like to keep to themselves — and they’re happier that way!

8. Iowa

The Hawkeye State lies in the heart of the Midwest. The state is experiencing a bit of a revival in terms of business and tourism. Regardless, people seem to be glad to call it home.

9. Idaho

Idaho is another lesser-known state with seemingly endless natural beauty. The residents like to take it slow and enjoy the small things in life, which landed the Gem State in the Top 10.

10. Connecticut

The Constitution State is one of only three states on the East Coast to make this list. It’s also one of the smallest states to crack the top 10. But, Connecticut is filled with charming cities, rich history, and storied neighborhoods.

Not a single state from the south cracks the top 10. Do you agree with their assessment?

Here’s where the southern states landed:

14. Virginia

22. Georgia

25. Texas

27. Florida

32. North Carolina

34. South Carolina

43. Alabama

44. Mississippi

45. Tennessee

46. Kentucky

47. Louisiana

50. West Virginia


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