These Are the Happiest U.S. States in 2023, According to One Study

published Sep 19, 2023
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
Credit: michela ravasio/Stocksy

Personal happiness relies upon a mix of internal and external factors, although certain years come with more positive or negative external factors than others. In 2023, for example, more than 75% of Americans report feeling “very” or “moderately” stressed out by high inflation. Meanwhile, a 2023 Gallup survey found that only 50% of American adults say they are “very satisfied” with how their lives are going.

Given how unpredictable life can be, residing in a place that meets your needs is one important factor in seeking personal happiness. But when it comes to the United States, which are the happiest?

To answer that question, WalletHub graded all 50 states across 30 key metrics, including the depression rate, the unemployment rate, income growth, and the percentages of adults who feel productive.

Utah takes first place with a score of 69.79 out of 100. The Beehive State ranked first in WalletHub’s “Work Environment” and “Community & Environment” categories and has the lowest average work hours.

Hawaii comes in second place with a score of 66.42, falling one spot from its No. 1 position in last year’s WalletHub study. For the second year in the row, the state ranked first in the study’s Emotional & Physical Well-Being category.

In third place is Maryland, which received a score of 64.62. The Old Line State ranked within the top five states in the Work & Environment and Community & Environment categories, and has the fourth-lowest adult depression rates in the country.

These are the top 10 happiest states in 2023, based on WalletHub data:

  1. Utah
  2. Hawaii
  3. Maryland
  4. Minnesota
  5. New Jersey
  6. Connecticut
  7. California
  8. Florida
  9. Idaho
  10. Nebraska

Still, you can’t name the happiest states in the country without also acknowledging the unhappiest states, which WalletHub’s study also does.

With that in mind, here are the top 10 unhappiest states, according to WalletHub:

  1. West Virginia
  2. Louisiana
  3. Tennessee
  4. Arkansas
  5. Kentucky
  6. Alabama
  7. Mississippi
  8. Alaska
  9. New Mexico
  10. Oklahoma

You can read WalletHub’s full study here.