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The World's Happiest Countries

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by Invisible, Jul 19, 2010.

  1. Invisible

    Invisible Admin Staff Member

    Jul 19, 2010
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    By Francesca Levy,
    July 14 2010

    In the wake of their World Cup loss, residents of the Netherlands may be feeling depressed. But there's reason to believe they won't be done in by the agony of defeat: According to a recent poll, the country is one of the happiest in the world. Championship-winning Spain, on the other hand, was swept with euphoria and national pride, but that may have been an unfamiliar feeling. The country ranks No. 17 of 21 European countries in terms of happiness.

    The fact is good times probably have more to do with the size of your wallet than the size of your trophy shelf. The five happiest countries in the world--Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands--are all clustered in the same region, and all enjoy high levels of prosperity.

    "The Scandinavian countries do really well," says Jim Harter, a chief scientist at Gallup, which developed the poll. "One theory why is that they have their basic needs taken care of to a higher degree than other countries. When we look at all the data, those basic needs explain the relationship between income and well-being."

    Behind the Numbers

    Quantifying happiness isn't an easy task. Researchers at the Gallup World Poll went about it by surveying thousands of respondents in 155 countries, between 2005 and 2009, in order to measure two types of well-being.

    First they asked subjects to reflect on their overall satisfaction with their lives, and ranked their answers using a "life evaluation" score between 1 and 10. Then they asked questions about how each subject had felt the previous day. Those answers allowed researchers to score their "daily experiences"--things like whether they felt well-rested, respected, free of pain and intellectually engaged.

    Subjects that reported high scores were considered "thriving." The percentage of thriving individuals in each country determined our rankings. For a complete list of countries surveyed, including the percentages thriving and their daily happiness scores, click here.

    Money Matters

    The Gallup researchers found evidence of what many have long suspected: money does buy happiness--at least a certain kind of it. In a related report, they studied the reasons why countries with high gross domestic products won out for well-being, and found an association between life satisfaction and income.

    "Money is an object that many or most people desire, and pursue during the majority of their waking hours," researchers wrote in the report. "It would be surprising if success at this pursuit had no influence whatsoever when people were asked to evaluate their lives."

    Indeed, Denmark, the world's happiest country, had a per-capita GDP of $36,000 in 2009, according to the Central Intelligence Agency. That's higher than 196 of the 227 countries for which the CIA collects statistics.

    But there's more to happiness than riches. The Gallup study showed that while income undoubtedly influenced happiness, it did so for a particular kind of well-being--the kind one feels when reflecting on his or her own successes and prospects for the future. Day-to-day happiness is more likely to be associated with how well one's psychological and social needs are being met, and that's harder to achieve with a paycheck.

    Take Costa Rica. The sixth-happiest country in the world, and the happiest country in the Americas, it beat out richer countries like the United States. That's because social networks in Costa Rica are tight, allowing individuals to feel happy with their lot, regardless of financial success.

    "Costa Rica ranks really high on social and psychological prosperity," says Harter. "It's probably things systemic to the society that make people over time develop better relationships, and put more value on relationships. Daily positive feelings rank really high there."

    Inhabitants of some rich countries are bound to feel happier. But happiness is elusive to define, and money isn't the only thing that influences it. Harter explains that the more abstract sense of happiness to which wealth contributes has a different effect on one's life than daily happiness.

    "Each of us is two different people. We evaluate our lives periodically; we sit back and reflect and summarize things that have gone on in our lives to date," Harter says.

    "Another side is how you experience things daily. Daily experience affects your stress and your psychology. How you evaluate your life affects your decisions. It's important to think about how you can leverage that well-being."

    Source: Forbes
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 4, 2016
  2. Kiranga

    Kiranga JF-Expert Member

    Jul 19, 2010
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    Utapimaje happiness? Na wale wakulima "happy go lucky" wa bongo wasiojua GDP wala CNN utaniambiaje hawako happier than wazungu wenye stress kibao kutokana na kuona stock market ina zigzag utafikiri heart rate ya mgonjwa wa ICU ? Kuna wakulima wa mpunga Thailand huko wako poa tu, udikteta, ufalme, ujambazi etc, wao wakishakula wali wao na kufanya meditation kwa Buddha huwaambii kitu, wanaona kama wako peponi, utaniambiaje hawa hawana furaha kuliko waholanzi ?
  3. T

    Tongue blister JF-Expert Member

    Jul 19, 2010
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    Mkuu nadhani utakuwa na tatizo la kuelewa kidogo...!!
  4. Chamoto

    Chamoto JF-Expert Member

    Jul 19, 2010
    Joined: Dec 7, 2007
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    Invisible kumbe unawapenda hawa jamaa wa "YT" mi
    huwa napenda sana kumcheki huyu jamaa na dada
    akiongea. Hawa jamaa si mchezo huwa wana pageviews
    nyingi kuliko hata sites za mainstream media.

    Kuhusu furaha... ukweli ni kwamba hii kitu hailetwi na
    vitu vya nje (kama pesa) bali inaletwa na jinsi unavyo
    jisikia mwenyewe kwa ndani (feelings) wakati unafanya
    kitu fulani.

    Kwa mfano kama wewe unapenda hisabati na huwa
    unapenda ku kokotoa mara kwa mara na huona raha
    kwasababu ya kokotoa, hiyo nifuraha ya kweli lakini
    kama wewe unakokotoa kwasababu ya kupasi mtihani
    basi mtihani ni kitu cha nje (external stimuli) na hakiwezi
    kupatia furaha ya kweli.

    Ni kweli unaweza kufurahi kwa muda ukipata pesa lakini
    kama utahitaji kitu cha nje (external stimuli) kuwa na
    furaha basi wewe huwezi kuwa na furaha ya kweli.

    Kwa kifupi furaha inaletwa na "internal drive" au passion
    yenye maana kwa mtu fulani

    kiranga usisahau kwamba hawa jamaa hawatuhesabu
    sisi waafrika kama tupo kwenye hii sayari. Muulize
    mtu yeyote marekani ni wapi anataka kutembea atakwambia
    ulaya. Hawa jamaa hawana mpango kabisa na Afrika.
    Kwa hiyo studies zao huwa zina tu exclude kabisa.

    Ukiona wanafanya research Afrika ujue wanataka ulaji
    tuu uwe wa kuchukua resources au wa kuombea pesa
    kwenye serikali zao.
  5. RealDeal

    RealDeal JF-Expert Member

    Jul 19, 2010
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    Somaliland is the 4th happiest country in Africa.. :biggrin1: very funny.
  6. Kiranga

    Kiranga JF-Expert Member

    Jul 19, 2010
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    Kma huwezi kuelezea zaidi utaonekana una uvivu wa kufikiri sana.