United Nations Report Presents the Secrets of Happiness

Analysis points to situations that make people sad or happy in different countries (Image source: Reproduction / World Happiness Report)

Columbia University's Earth Institute produced a 155-page report called the World Happiness Report for a United Nations conference on happiness. In the document, some issues were presented that lead people to be more satisfied, besides the most common reasons that cause frustrations and sadness.

Some points, for example, were based on the economic situation and the impact this has on people's lives in the different locations analyzed: USA, European Union countries, Switzerland, Latin America, Russia, Eastern Europe and Asia.

Fortunately, you will not need to read more than 100 report sheets to learn about the topics covered: a brief summary has been made available that addresses issues such as poverty, unemployment and living standards. Check it out below:

  • On average, richer people are happier than poorer people, but wealth is just a factor in overall happiness. The same goes for countries where factors such as personal freedom, lack of corruption and social support are most important.
  • Unemployment obviously reduces happiness, but not for the reasons you imagine. It's not the loss of income, but the loss of things like self-esteem, social life, and the workplace is what leads to a drop in happiness. Still according to the study, even low quality jobs yield more satisfaction than being unemployed.
  • Higher living standards correspond to increased happiness in some but not all countries. In the United States, for example, happiness levels have remained stagnant while living standards have risen over the past 50 years.
  • Stable family life contributes to happiness: Married people around the world say they are happier.