Minnesota is the happiest state in America, study says

What's our secret?

What kind of place makes a person happy? A land of 10,000 lakes.

That's according to a new study from WalletHub, which found that Minnesota is the happiest state in America.

Is it the sense of "Minnesota Nice" making us happy? Our lakes and weekends at the cabin? Our our affinity for anything on a stick?

WalletHub may be a personal finance website, but even they know happiness is about more than money or a state of mind. There are a lot of factors that affect a person's overall well-being, such as having a job that you like (that also pays well), or feeling safe in your neighborhood.

And where you live can have a lot to do with it.

WalletHub analysts compared the 50 states across 28 key indicators of happiness, and then grouped the results into three categories: emotional and physical well-being, work environment, and community and environment. 

Minnesota scored in the top five for all three. 

Emotional and physical well-being

Minnesota is the fifth best state for emotional and physical well-being, WalletHub says.

One thing giving our state a boost in this category: sleep.

Minnesotans must be mindful of bed times or fitting in afternoon naps, because our state has the third-highest adequate-sleep rate, coming in behind Colorado and South Dakota.

Minnesota also has the 14th lowest suicide rate, and the percentage of depressed adults that live here is below the national average.

Work environment

The North Star State also came in at no. 5 for work environment.

Things that helped us: Minnesotans have some of the fewest work hours (eighth in the country), a below-average long-term unemployment rate, and decent income growth (10th highest in the country).

Community and environment

We scored highest in the community and environment category, ranking third in the U.S.

That's due to our high volunteer rate (third highest in the country), and low rate of separation and divorce (fourth lowest).

To top it off, Minnesota is the fourth safest state in the country, behind Vermont, Maine, and Massachusetts.

You can read the full results of the study here.

Next Up