The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index annual report for 2013 came out earlier this week, announcing that Ohio is the fifth most miserable state in which to live.
But compared to the happiest state that was stated in the report, North Dakota, I would never leave my precious home of Ohio.
More than 178,000 people were interviewed from all 50 states, according to the Well-Being Index. The study measures the emotional and physical health of citizens.
The people in the study were asked a wide variety of questions that reflect their local health, employment, education and environment. A common theme for states with low well-being ratings was unhealthy lifestyles.
According to the survey, Ohio had a higher median household income that most of the other low ranked states, with the median being about $46,800 in 2012. But only about 49 percent of respondents stated that they were thriving in their lives. This high number contributed to Ohio’s No. 5 ranking.
Ohio was in the bottom 10 states for the categories of life evaluation, emotional health, work environment, physical health and healthy behaviors. In the past five years, Ohio has always been ranked in the top seven most miserable states.
The No. 4 most miserable state was Alabama, then third was Mississippi and coming in second was Kentucky. The winner for most miserable state is our neighbor, West Virginia, which contains the most Americans with a negative outlook on their future.
The survey indicated that the best state to live in was North Dakota because of its growing economy and low unemployment rate.
Though the survey might seem conclusive that Ohio is miserable, it has not convinced me to move from my Buckeye state to North Dakota.
Granted, the weather in Ohio these days is less than ideal, but there is so much more the state offers to make it less miserable.
We have Cedar Point — casually dubbed the best amusement park in the world — and Kings Island for some summertime fun.
We get to experience all of the seasons, though winter doesn’t seem to end and summer consists of humidity and construction.
We have Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams that can make any day better.
We have beaches, even if they are on Lake Erie and only accessible for about two months of the year.
And we can walk around shouting O-H and you are guaranteed to have people respond saying I-O.
Instead of finding the miserables of living in Ohio, there are positives surrounding us everyday.