The Huffington post just published an article about measuring happiness via tweets. The University of Vermont looked at positive words used by geography and mapped the results. Their infographic is below.
You can read the whole article here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/02/happiest-states-_n_3696160.html?ir=Business&ref=topbar
When I look at the data from the Vermont study and compared it with data from other national studies, there seems to be a pattern. Is there a correlation with areas where the pace of business is a little slower? Is it possible that lower expectations for achievement and less visible examples of what you don’t have, accompanied with having enough to live a reasonable life create the best environment for happiness?
In other words, could you be happier if you had enough to meet your basic needs, did not feel the need to meet everyone else’s expectations, and you were not envious of or constantly exposed to others who had more than you?
Some other great places to find data on happiness.
Check out the University of Vermont’s Hedonometer: http://hedonometer.org/index.html
Gallup publishes a Well-Being index for the US and other countries. http://www.well-beingindex.com/
Nic Marx helped create the Happy Planet Index which measures sustainability as well as well-being. http://www.happyplanetindex.org/
There is even a World Database of Happiness that attempts to catalogue happiness data and measurement. http://www1.eur.nl/fsw/happiness/
The Center for Bhutan studies published their view of Gross National Happiness, one of Bhutan’s key measurement for their country’s development. http://www.grossnationalhappiness.com/
Another source for information about World Happiness is the World Happiness Report: http://unsdsn.org/files/2013/09/WorldHappinessReport2013_online.pdf