Home State News Maryland Is 2022’s 2nd Happiest State in America – WalletHub Study

Maryland Is 2022’s 2nd Happiest State in America – WalletHub Study


Information via WalletHub:

With 87% of Americans feeling “anxious” or “very anxious” about inflation, the personal-finance website WalletHub today released its report on 2022’s Happiest States in America, as well as accompanying videos and expert commentary.

To determine where Americans have the highest satisfaction with life, WalletHub compared the 50 states across 30 key indicators of happiness. The data set ranges from the depression rate and the share of adults feeling productive to income growth and the unemployment rate.

Happiness in Maryland (1=Happiest; 25=Avg.):

  • 8th – % of Depressed Adults
  • 5th – Suicide Rate
  • 24th – Number of Work Hours
  • 15th – Volunteer Rate
  • 20th – Separation & Divorce Rate
  • 10th – Safety
  • 22nd – Share of Adults Feeling Active & Productive

For the full report, please visit:


Top 10 states include:

1 Hawaii
2 Maryland
3 Minnesota
4 Utah
5 New Jersey
6 Idaho
7 California
8 Illinois
9 Nebraska
10 Connecticut

For my Tennessee readers…you rank #43 in this study.

More from WalletHub

Expert Commentary

What are the key ingredients to a happy life?

“Once the basic necessities of life are secured (safety, shelter, food, etc.), the key to happiness appears to be strong social relationships with a few other people. These relationships can’t be causal friendships. Instead, they must involve strong emotional bonds that are predictable, recurring, and intimate (not necessarily sexual). We seem to satiate ourselves with a relatively low number of these relationships, perhaps 4 or 5. We have trouble handling more than that. There are individual differences, but social relationships seem to be really key for people.”
Jim Allen – Associate Professor, SUNY Geneseo

“Well-being researchers have identified several ‘ingredients’ that make up a happy and fulfilling life: positive emotions, meaningful social relationships, and having a sense of purpose in life, to name just a few.”
Emily C. Willroth, Ph.D. – Assistant Professor, Washington University in St. Louis

How important is money to people’s happiness?

“There is currently a debate about this. A famous study conducted by organizational psychologist Daniel Kahneman and his colleague Angus Deaton in 2010…analyzed more than 450,000 respondents to Gallup polling to show that generally…money makes people happy until they make about 150% of the median income in their area, then it plateaus. In other words, people who make a lot, but do not have…freedom, meaning, relationships [and] leisure…tend to still be less happy, while those who have money and the four components are very happy. Additionally, a host of work led by Leaf van Boven (Colorado-Boulder) shows that what people spend their money on influences their happiness. People that buy experiences over things, spend money on small temporary things (ice cream after a bad day) instead of steadfastly saving, do not spend beyond their means by taking out a lot of loans, and do not waste money buying things they do not need (even if they are enticingly on sale) tend to be happier.”
Kyle J. Emich, Ph.D. – Associate Professor; Women’s Leadership Institute Fellow, University of Delaware

“Money is important in as much as it helps us achieve basic needs (described above) or other things that would bring happiness. So having money does not make people happy, but spending money in strategic ways can make people happy. People tend to be happier when they spend money on others (altruistic spending), or on time-savers, such that people have more leisure time to spend on fun or meaningful activities. Research shows that excess wealth does not correlate strongly with happiness, but it is definitely better to be very rich than very poor!”
Dylan Faulkner Selterman, Ph.D. – Associate Teaching Professor, Johns Hopkins University

How much does where you live influence your happiness?

“Given the factors that lead to happiness including the availability of competitively paying jobs, safe environments, a sense of belonging, family, nature, and other factors, location will impact one’s happiness. It is the variables of the location that contribute to the happiness factor, not the location itself necessarily.”
Sunil Ramlall, Ph.D. – Professor; Higher Ed. Consultant, Concordia University Wisconsin

“Community environments have an important influence on happiness and health. In addition to your daily activities and choices, living in a community that offers access to resources and opportunities, and engenders a sense of safety, belonging, connection, and support helps people to thrive. Schools, neighborhoods, and community and faith-based organizations can play a big role in helping support well-being and cultivating collective happiness. Resources and services that help to support environmental and physical safety, and provide access to good quality food, housing, education, and preventative healthcare are vital to everyone’s well-being. The community environment also plays a big role in fostering caring and supportive relationships. Research shows that greater racial diversity in a community increases the likelihood that people living there engage in prosocial behaviors, such as offering help to a stranger. That sense of connection and reassurance that neighbors are looking out for one another can have a powerful influence on happiness and well-being.”
Maryam Kia-Keating, Ph.D. – Professor, University of California, Santa Barbara; Licensed Clinical Psychologist; Founder, Power of Drishti Meditations

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