Lifestyle

Where Does Texas Rank Among the Happiest States?

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Is your happiness contingent upon where you live? Texans know that our state offers countless reasons to be happy, but how do we stack up to other states? Are Texan residents truly the happiest? Financial website WalletHub recently researched and compared key components to happiness among the fifty United States and Washington D.C. Texas ranked 29th overall in happiness based on WalletHub’s criteria, which included emotional and physical well-being, workplace, and community, and environment.

These metrics were determined based on past research into human happiness and studied self-reported levels of overall satisfaction, emotional stability, career satisfaction, and the effects of illness and disease. Other factors considered in the research included diagnosed depression, obesity, heart attacks, and life expectancy in the state. Community factors that were studied included weather, access to attractions, population rate, public safety, and more.

smile guy
Photo: pixabay.com

Texas ranked 33rd in the emotional and physical well-being category, and jumped up to number 20 for community and environment. When it comes to mental health, Texas is happier than most states, coming in at #4 for lowest diagnosed depression rates. A good number of serious pleasure-seekers call Texas home, it seems, as the state was in the top five of most hedonistic states. Even with Texas’ love for Friday night lights, its sports participation levels were low overall as well, landing at #47 on the list.

While money doesn’t necessarily buy happiness, research concludes that at least up to a certain point, money does increase positive emotions. There is a sense of security that comes with having adequate income, explains Jaime L. Kurtz, Associate Professor of Psychology at James Madison University, “Poverty puts a strain relationships and health, which can also detract from happiness.” Patricia O’Grady, Associate Professor of Education at University of Tampa, adds, “Money buys the opportunity for happiness and joy – not the happiness/joy itself,” she writes. Texas came in 27th overall in the work environment category, which measured income level, job security, and job growth rate.

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