Happiness comes from a mix of things: the people we connect with, pursuing our interests and values, and taking care of our well-being. It’s different for everyone, but finding happiness means finding what makes you feel content and joyful in life.

In recent times, achieving happiness has become a greater challenge for many people. According to the American Psychiatric Association, high inflation has led to stress for 75% of those experiencing price increases in their areas. Additionally, only 50% of Americans report high satisfaction with their personal lives. Using this information, WalletHub, the personal finance website, published a report on the happiest states in America.

To figure out where Americans are the happiest, WalletHub looked at all 50 states using 30 key indicators of happiness. These indicators include factors such as the depression rate, the percentage of adults who feel productive, income growth, and the unemployment rate, among others. They assessed each metric using a 100-point scale, where a score of 100 indicated the highest level of happiness. In the end, they calculated each state’s overall score by considering the weighted average across all metrics and used these scores to establish the ranking order for our sample.

Where New Jersey Ranks

New Jersey takes the fifth spot in the rankings. According to the study, New Jersey has the lowest suicide rate per 100,000 residents, standing at 7, 4.6 times less than Wyoming, with the highest rate at 32. Interestingly, the study revealed that New Jersey has one of the highest rates of long-term unemployment while maintaining one of the lowest divorce rates.

The Happiest State in America

According to this study, Utah is the happiest state in America. It leads with the highest volunteer rate at 40.70 percent and has the lowest separation and divorce rate at 15.46 percent. Meanwhile, in the second position, Hawaii claims the lowest percentage of adults experiencing depression at just 11.40 percent. Maryland came in third, followed by Minnesota and then New Jersey.

If you’re curious about how other states fared, take a look at the complete study here.

Music From These Artists Make People Feel The Most Confident

Music can be used to regulate your mood by easing negative emotions and enhancing positive ones. According to the National Alliance of Mental Illness, our favorite melodies release dopamine, known as the “feel-good hormone.” They also said that fast tempos can psychologically and physiologically arouse us, helping energize us for the day which can have a positive impact on our mental state.

They say these music acts make people feel the most confident.

Within Health, a company that helps with eating disorders recoveries study on how music impacts body image. Part of their study features music acts in several genres that they say make people feel confident.

They used the searches on a digital music streaming service to gather their results. Compiling a total of 2,544 playlists that were found when searching “confidence,” “feel good,” “body positivity,” “body image,” “feeling ugly,” and “bad body image.”

The study found that Lizzo is the top artist to listen to for body confidence. When it comes to the rock genre, it’s the most listened-to genre by fans with positive body image at percent.

Another result from the study found that 28 percent of people think music videos have a negative impact on body image.

Body-positive playlist vs. negative body image playlist.

Meanwhile, the top three songs found on the body-positive playlist include “Confident” by Demi Lovato, “Flowers” by Miley Cyrus, and “Kill Bill” by SZA. These and many other songs in this category feature lyrics about strong individuals who reject outdated beauty standards in favor of creating their own.

The top three songs found on the negative body image playlist include “Prom Queen” by Beach Bunny, “Fat Funny Friend” by Maddie Zahm, and “Jealousy, Jealousy” by Olivia Rodrigo. Playlists on the negative end of the body positivity spectrum were more often populated with songs about struggling with beauty standards.

Their research showed specific artists that are linked to making people feel confident. From Luke Combs, Drake, and Nirvana to Daft Punk, Pink Floyd, and Taylor Swift.

See the full study and complete list of top artists who make people feel confident for various genres here.

Here are artists that make people feel confident by genre.

  • Country – Carrie Underwood

    Carrie Underwood topped the country genre list for artists who make people feel confident. She is followed by Shania Twain, Luke Combs, Miranda Lambert, and Toby Keith. Underwood shared the best ways to gain confidence with The Country Daily. She said that some days you’ve just got to fake it until you make it. “‘Okay, just kind of pretend like you know what you’re doing [laughing] until you actually do,’ and I feel like that worked,” she shared.

  • Metal – Metallica

    Metallica topped the metal genre list for artists who make people feel confident. The band was number one out of five other music acts followed by Tool, Nirvana, Five Finger Death Punch, Avenged Sevenfold.

  • Rock – Queen

    Queen is number one on the rock genre list for artists who make people feel confident. Dr Jacob Jolij, a cognitive neuroscientist the University of Groningen in Holland said that the top feel-good song is Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now.” Some of the other music acts on the list include Guns N’ Roses, Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, and Pink Floyd.

  • Pop – Lizzo

    From Taylor Swift, and Adele, to Beyoncé, and Lady Gaga. Lizzo tops the list for pop artists who make people feel confident. She has shown many times that she is all about body positivity and self-confidence. Whether its in her music, social media presence, or motivational speeches when she’s snagging up an award, its no surprise she tops the list.

  • EDM – Alesso

    Alesso topped the EDM genre list for artists who make people feel confident. The band was number one out of five other music acts followed by the late Avicii, Daft Punk, Seven Lions, and Tiesto. Many of these artists were also named as EDM Sauce’s top artists for Feel Good Songs.

  • Hip-Hop/ Rap – Megan Thee Stallion

    Megan Thee Stallion topped the hip-hop/ rap genre list for artists who make people feel confident. She lead the pack followed by Drake, Nicki Minaj, Cardi B, and Eminem. These artists often produce high energy music with lyrics that highlight being confident.

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