Skip to main content

Minnesota is the happiest state in America, study says

What's our secret?
  • Author:
  • Updated:

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

lightning, storm

Isolated severe weather in Minnesota on Tuesday and Wednesday

Definitely not a slam dunk either day, but the chance is there.


Driver ejected in fatal crash on Shepard Road in St. Paul

The driver of a Dodge Ram was ejected and died at the scene.

Screen Shot 2022-06-26 at 10.02.59 AM

North Dakota's only abortion clinic relocating to Minnesota

A GoFundMe set up to help the clinic make the move to Minnesota has surpassed its $500,000 goal.

Screen Shot 2022-06-26 at 12.37.03 PM

Deadly vehicle fire on Interstate 94 west of Fargo

The victim's age and name have not been released.

flickr - gov tim walz - mn senate dfl

Overturning Roe v. Wade won't do a 'damn thing' to prevent abortions, Walz says

Gov. Tim Walz signed an executive order Saturday meant to protect abortion access in the state and people who come from out of state seeking one.


Man crossing Highway 13 in Burnsville fatally struck by driver

The victim is a 31-year-old man from Prior Lake.

Screen Shot 2022-06-26 at 7.50.33 AM

4 shot near Stone Arch Bridge in Minneapolis

The shooting happened around 11 p.m. Saturday.

Screen Shot 2022-06-25 at 7.55.28 PM

Charges: Cop feared for his life during struggle for gun with suspect

Allen Denzel Oliver-Hall has been charged with second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon.

Burnsville, Minnesota - May 2019 (2)

Shootout near Erik's Bike Shop, Lunds & Byerlys in Burnsville

Police say youths were shooting at each other on Saturday afternoon.


Minnesota is the best-run state in America, study says

After years of climbing steadily in the rankings, MN grabbed the no. 1 spot.

Minnesota is the second-best state to raise a family, WalletHub says

A new study looks at which states are the best – and the worst – for families.

St. Paul, Minneapolis among America's happiest cities

They're featured in WalletHub's '2018 Happiest Cities in America' list.

Biking is good for Minnesota's economy, recent study says

Minnesota's bicycling industry contributed about $780 million in 2014.

Ranking: Minnesota is the best state in America to raise a family

It's good to live in the Land of 10,000 Reasons to Brag.