M’sia Ranked 5th Happiest Country Globally, Study Shows

It's the only Southeast Asian country to make it into the top 10.
Being a land blessed with abundant natural resources, multiple cultures living together in harmony, and largely safe from natural disasters, Malaysians indeed have a lot to be happy and thankful for.

And that happiness is being reflected in how Malaysians have been coping in terms of their mental health, where it was named as the 5th happiest country in the world.

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M’sia ranked 5th happiest country globally

The list was published in a report titled the Global Mind Project ‘Mental State of the World’ carried out by American nonprofit neuroscience research organisation, Sapien Labs, where it was based on surveys conducted across 400,000 people in 71 countries.

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M'sians holding the jalur gemilang
For illustrative purposes only. Photo via Canva

According to the report, here are the top five happiest countries in the world:

1. Dominican Republic
2. Sri Lanka
3. Tanzania
4. Panama
5. Malaysia

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The study also utilises a Mental Health Quotient (MHQ) to measure different aspects of participants’ mental health and categorises them based on their scores, ranging from “thriving” to “distressed”.

Malaysia snagged the fifth spot with an overall score of 85%, which was a 2.9% increase from 2022 and making it the only Southeast Asian country to be in the Top 10.
Group of m'sian women waving the jalur gemilang
For illustrative purposes only. Photo via Canva

As for the unhappiest countries in the world, they were:

1. Uzbekistan
2. UK
3. South Africa
4. Brazil
5. Tajikistan

No signs of mental wellbeing returning to pre-Covid level

Meanwhile, the report also said that mental wellbeing is still at a post-pandemic low and doesn’t show any sign of reverting to pre-pandemic levels.

It also noted that those aged below 35 saw a sharp decrease in mental wellbeing during the pandemic while it remained relatively stable for those aged over 65.

Depressed young man hiding his face
For illustrative purposes only. Photo via Canva

“In 2023, at both a global level and at the level of individual countries, MHQ scores remained largely unchanged relative to 2021 and 2022, after a sharp drop during the pandemic years.

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“This raises important questions about the lasting impact of the pandemic, and how shifts in the way we live and work and the amplification of existing habits like remote working, online communication, consumption of ultra-processed food, use of single-use plastics have cumulatively pushed us into a space of poorer mental wellbeing.

You can read the full report here.


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