Monday, January 23, 2006

You're Happy So I Am Happy

So we seem to have toped another list. But this time it is a more "happier" list. Matter of fact it is a list that throws my job of the Optimist in jeopardy.

I am not sure as yet how it was calculated. All my Google search is throwing up are articles mentioning the above but not the study itself or its methodology. I would be grateful if someone could point the way for me. In midst of my joy the only thing that seems to be bothering me is that Bangladeshi's in general are a pessimistic bunch. Even when we are doing well we tend to say that things are not too good. Just ask any Bangladeshi businessman the simple question "How's business?" And you will get a longish lecture that depicts a business cycle as down and downer!

Matter of fact the similar question asked to any Bangladeshi will give us not only their medical history but also that of their Uncle's younger brother-in-law's eldest great uncle's next door neighbour from 50 years ago!!

Well it’s not like me to make people feel depressed… so I say go on, have a blast! Feel free to smile or laugh! And at least for once see that things indeed are good with our nation!

Bangladeshis Are Happiest, Survey Reports


Bangladesh is the happiest nation in the world, the World Happiness Survey said the United States, on the other hand, is a sad story: it ranks only 46th.

That's way behind India, the fifth happiest place in the world, and others including Ghana and Latvia, Croatia and Estonia. Research led by London School of Economics professors into the link between personal spending power and the perceived quality of life has conclusively proved that money can buy everything but happiness.

The study revealed that people in Bangladesh, one of the poorest countries in the world, derive far more happiness from their small incomes than, for example, the British (32nd on the list) do from their relatively large bank balances.

In fact, people in most rich countries including Austria, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Canada, Japan and others are much more unhappier than their poorer counterparts in countries like the Dominican Republic and Armenia.

Most unfortunate, however, are Russians and people in some other parts of the former Soviet Union. They are neither rich nor happy, the World Happiness Survey indicates.

Slovenia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Bulgaria and Moldova follow the United States in the list to bring up the rear. The study shows that although the British have twice as much money to spend in real terms compared with 40 years ago, their perceived quality of life has not improved.

Earlier surveys revealed that many Britons thought money could bring happiness. The new study shows that such a link still exists in poor countries because a small increase in income can mean large improvements in lifestyle.

However, beyond a certain income-level, direct relationship breaks down. According to the research, happiness in rich countries now is far more dependent on close personal relationships, good health and job satisfaction.

People in Britain are generally less happy than they were ten years ago. Two-thirds would rather see the environment improved than have more economic growth and personal spending money, said Robert Worcester, visiting professor of government at the LSE and co-author of the study.

The researchers have concluded that, although Britons are rich compared with most other countries, many suffer from an emotional poverty caused by consumerism and the breakdown of family life.

Source : Independent. {Click the title to take you to the page}

No comments: