Jack Tyrrell specializes in Kakaako, Honolulu, Hawaii luxury condo projects.
ala moana beach park.jpg

Popular finance website, Wallethub, named Hawaii the happiest state in the country. With a plethora of nature to enjoy, warm weather year-round, and a culture of aloha, this comes as no surprise! Read more from Pacific Business News, below:

Hawaii is the happiest state in the country according to a new report by finance website Wallethub.com.

For the report, researchers compared each of the 50 states based on several key criteria including physical well-being, work satisfaction, and community and environment. This is Hawaii's second consecutive time grabbing the No. 1 spot, and its fifth time in at least the top 10 on the list.

The Aloha State was ranked third-happiest in 2017 and 2015, fourth-happiest in 2016, and eighth-happiest in 2014.

Of the criteria that each state was judged by, Hawaii adults had the lowest share of depression, the longest life expectancy, and the highest social well-being score. The state was among the top five states for income growth, low divorce rates, underemployment and median credit score.

On the flip side, Hawaii ranked pretty low in a few categories, including economic confidence, No. 40, commute time, No. 42, job security, No. 48, and adequate sleep rate — the only category where Hawaii came in dead last.

Many of the state's poor performance areas should come as no surprise to residents who are well aware of Hawaii's high cost of living, and high-volume traffic issues. However, despite the negatives, Hawaii residents are still relatively happy, and psychologists say that, in addition to stellar weather it's Hawaii's family culture that makes the Islands a cut above the rest.

"I think people believe that money or material goods brings happiness, but we know from psychological research that having more money or affluence, while certainly helpful in providing a range of resources and access to quality health care, schools, etc., also leaves those living in these communities in poorer psychological health, said Miguel E. Gallardo, associate professor of psychology at Pepperdine University, in a statement.

"In fact, there has been other psychological research that has indicated that those “poorer” communities are more connected and collaborative with one another as it serves as a necessary outcome to their survival, both individually and communally," Gallardo said. "In essence, our relationships with one another and the support and love we receive from being connected interpersonally are important ingredients to a happy life."

Hawaii ranked toward the bottom at No. 40 in the report's volunteer rate category, and Gallardo suggests that a sure-fire way to increase happiness is to participate in community service and volunteer projects. The state with the highest volunteer rate, Utah, came in at No. 2 in the overall rankings.

"Positive psychology tells us that doing something good for other people, no matter how small or large, has positive psychological benefits to our own wellbeing," Gallardo stated. "Being connected to others and seeing our lives intertwined in some meaningful way and serving others both appear to be good starting points to living a happier life."

Other key findings in the report:

  • After Hawaii, the happiest states were Utah, Minnesota, California and New Jersey

  • The least happy state in the U.S. according to the report is West Virginia, followed by Arkansas, Alaska, Mississippi and Louisiana

  • Residents of South Dakota had the highest-average sleep rate, opposite Hawaii's No. 50 ranking

  • Washington had the highest sports participation rate and Kentucky had the lowest amount of active adults

  • New York had the lowest suicide rate in the country and Montana had the highest

  • Residents of Utah had the fewest work hours and Alaska residents reported the most

  • The safest state in the country is Minnesota and the least safe state is Mississippi