The Key to Happiness: Finland

Pack your warmest coats because you are moving north! Well, if you want to be happy that is. The World Happiness Report 2018 was released yesterday and Nordic nations – Finland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Iceland – populate the top of the list. Switzerland and the Netherlands also rank among the blissful lands.

Book your one-way flight today because the United States does not rank among those chilly cheerful places. In fact, the U.S. dropped four spots from last year’s ranking. Does this correlation have anything to do with our current president and his clown circus? You decide. The study found Americans’ life expectancy has declined, suicide rates have risen, the opioid crisis is increasing, all while inequality is growing and government confidence tanks. The editor of the World Happiness Report and professor at Columbia University, Jeffrey Sachs, stated that “the comparative position of the U.S. relative to other high-income countries is nothing short of alarming.”

In contrast to the United States, the happiest countries have “solid social support systems, good public services, and even [pay] a significant amount of taxes” for those services. Wait…helping others enjoy life makes us happier? We know this from experience, but for some reason Americans fear implementation of such a political recipe for personal happiness. It borders too closely with the feared S-word: socialism.

For longevity, health and happiness, book your flight today. If you are truly averse to colder climates, New Zealand and Australia are also in the top ten. Head north or south but get the hell out of the United States. Or, stay and vote for a political agenda that will help others while making you happier.

Dr. H.