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May 25, 2024 20 mins

SMNTY continues our conversation on women and happiness, digging into the happiest countries in the world in this classic episode.

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Speaker 1 (00:05):
Hey, this is Annie and Samantha.

Speaker 2 (00:06):
I'm welcome to stuff I Never told you.

Speaker 3 (00:07):
Production to buy urry to you, and we're back with
our final classic and the four parter that we did
of Monday minis on women in Happiness and this one

we kind of talk about the future and what that
could look like and the importance of parody and things
like that, and we do have some ideas of visiting
some places, maybe doing some interviews around this what it
could look like and where what it does look like
in other places. So if you have any suggestions about that,

please let us know. But in the meantime, please enjoy
this classic episode.

Speaker 1 (00:57):
Hey, this is Annie and Samantha.

Speaker 2 (00:58):
I'm welcome to stuff I Never told re production of
iHeart Radio.

Speaker 4 (01:10):
And Welcome Back. I guess we're doing a small mini
Monday mini series.

Speaker 1 (01:14):
Yeah, yeah, there we go.

Speaker 4 (01:18):
Like that did not make sense in my head because
it kind of brought back some conversations when we had
the original. We were a little sarcastic in the first
episode about what was happy, and then we talked a
little more about what was actually being said, it's being
happy or unhappy. We did talk about people who were
unhappy in this third part, if you just listen, we
talked about couples and who were the happiest couples and

just talking about what some of those characteristics look like.

Speaker 1 (01:43):
And before we start, I do need to know.

Speaker 4 (01:44):
Where's the last place you went when we were traveling.

Speaker 2 (01:48):
It was Canada? Canada?

Speaker 4 (01:52):
Yeah, yeah, because I was in Florida at the same
time and everything was slowly shutting down.

Speaker 2 (02:00):
Yeah, I thought I might not be able to get
out of Canada.

Speaker 4 (02:02):
Oh that was Oh yeah, you were like I might
be stucky.

Speaker 1 (02:07):
Yep, I forgot about it.

Speaker 2 (02:11):
About it now I was. I mean, of the places
to be stuck.

Speaker 1 (02:14):
Who's not bad because you were in Quebec.

Speaker 3 (02:18):
No, I was in Uh oh my god, what did
I say? I was in Montreal. I was in Montreal.

Speaker 4 (02:24):
I was very jealous because I wanted to come and
I didn't get it invite. But it's okay, it's it's okay,
it's okay. I got to hang out with some of
our cold people's ease Anna Holly, so.

Speaker 1 (02:33):
You know, at least I got to do that.

Speaker 4 (02:35):
The reason I wanted to ask, because I don't know
if it's anybody else.

Speaker 1 (02:39):
Everybody started to slowly travel.

Speaker 4 (02:41):
I've seen it, and I've been very jealous of that,
but I'm still kind of weary, especially now all the
mass mandates are gone. I'm like, yeah, I don't I'm
gonna still wait. But people are traveling and it happened
to be a conversation that when we talk about happiness,
whe are some of the happy places. Because I was
just like women in happiness. That's how I started googling it,

and then it showed happiest cities, happiest countries, happiest places
for women. I was like, okay, well, now we got
to talk about that obviously.

Speaker 2 (03:11):
Okay, Yeah, so we.

Speaker 4 (03:12):
Have a few articles and we're not going to read them,
but we'll let you know it to articles that talk
about the happiest countries in the world.

Speaker 3 (03:18):
All right, Yes, So we wanted to start with this
article from afar dot com and the twenty twenty two
World Happiness Report, and so we're just gonna read off
the top twenty happiest countries in the world according to
this report. Number one Finland, followed by Denmark, Iceland, Switzerland, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Sweden, Norway, Israel,

New Zealand, Austria, Australia, Ireland, Germany, Canada, United States, United Kingdom, Chechia, Belgium, France.

Speaker 4 (03:52):
Finance is twenty. That's surprising. Wait, Italy's not on the
list at all.

Speaker 2 (03:56):
Yeah, there's some surprises.

Speaker 1 (03:59):
Here, some surprises.

Speaker 4 (04:00):
So I will say I have only been to two.

Speaker 1 (04:05):
The United States is on there.

Speaker 2 (04:09):
We've got some questions and follow up.

Speaker 1 (04:12):
I have questions. I have a lot of questions.

Speaker 4 (04:15):
We thought this was interesting because this is non gender based.
It just says happiest countries in the world. So essentially
they asked people on a scale of zero to ten,
with the best being best possible life for them and
zero being the worst possible, and trying to rank where
people would put themselves. So obviously that means this is
going to be very very very very very biased, which

is why I'm very surprised that the United States is
on this list for twenty twenty two. Don't get me wrong,
I'm grateful for where I am. Feel very thankful and
privileged to be at this place that I am.

Speaker 1 (04:49):
Being able to be on a.

Speaker 4 (04:50):
Podcast and talk about why are we on this list
is a privilege in itself. But we know things are
happening to the point that many people outside of the
country are like, are you all okay?

Speaker 2 (05:00):
Yeah, they asked me that when I was in Canada.
In fact, everything all right, are you good? Are good?

Speaker 4 (05:09):
There was one country that did score the lowest at
I guess the way they ranged it was two point
four oh four and then Finland was the top at
seven point eight two one out of ten. So that's
a lot of well I really need to know, and
it does. It's a Gallop World poll that they use,
so I guess we could go look at it and
break down the numbers and who they asked. But I

have questions. I don't doubt that Finland is on that list.
I don't doubt that Canada has been on that list.
They've been through some things, Ireland has been doing some
big changes.

Speaker 1 (05:41):
I really want to go.

Speaker 4 (05:42):
This is the next adventure I want to have outside
of trying to get an RV.

Speaker 1 (05:46):
I really want RV. Y'all went to look at one
this weekend too.

Speaker 2 (05:49):
It was nice. Oh really, yeah.

Speaker 4 (05:51):
It was nice because I had this thing happening there
our neighborhood and I was like, oh, well you have airstream,
you have you have RBS, let me go look.

Speaker 1 (05:59):
I digress.

Speaker 4 (06:00):
But yeah, so yeah, I'm surprised Italy is not on here.
Maybe Italians are a lot more honest than the rest
of us.

Speaker 3 (06:07):
Well, I know, like obviously we don't have the numbers
in front of us, but there have been correlations, are
not correlations, but there people have looked at like these
kinds of numbers and then put them side by side
with something like gender equality or even parity in government
to see how that might the linguage that might be there,

the linkage that might be there. We talked about that
a little bit in our part two of this Happy
Many Monday mini series.

Speaker 4 (06:37):
It is.

Speaker 3 (06:40):
So there's just so many factors that go into too
happiness for sure, and especially this being twenty twenty two.

Speaker 2 (06:47):
I what a year to ask. I mean, I guess
you could say that about pretty much any year, but twenty.

Speaker 4 (06:52):
Twenty two, the last three years is pretty much all those.

Speaker 1 (06:56):

Speaker 4 (06:57):
So these are based entirely on self perceptions, so that
says a lot. And they said they bring in factors
like strong social support systems among friends and family life, expectancy,
traid to make choices, absence of corruption and government, and
generosity when it comes to donating to charity.

Speaker 1 (07:17):
So an interesting.

Speaker 4 (07:19):
Report for sure, but you know, we had to take
it another step and talk about what are the best
countries for women not just people women. So we have
a top ten list from usnews dot com, and essentially
they're not the US DLDR. This is a twenty twenty

one list, so it is a year behind. I do
need to try to see if you can find it
at number five.

Speaker 1 (07:49):
We're going backwards on this one. It's okay.

Speaker 4 (07:51):
Build up's Netherlands, which apparently rate thirty one out of
one hundred and fifty six countries in the Global Gender
Gap Report in twenty twenty one. So apparently I think
I've never been. Have you wanted to go to the Netherlands.

Speaker 1 (08:04):
I've never been.

Speaker 2 (08:06):
I've been to the Netherlands.

Speaker 1 (08:07):
Your thoughts Did you feel like it was a great
country for women?

Speaker 2 (08:13):
I feel like I should put a caveat here.

Speaker 3 (08:14):
I worked for the European Union for a time for
like eight months, and through that I've been to pretty
much every country in Europe. Every country is part of
the European Union as well, which I guess obviously, yeah, yeah,
but I a lot of times I spent like I
don't know, two or three days at a time in
a place. So it was sort of I was there

and I liked it, but I didn't get any sense
of like, wow, this women.

Speaker 1 (08:44):
But it was nice.

Speaker 4 (08:46):
Yeah, apparently some of the things that are great for
women includes, uh, maternity leave, great place for new mothers.
They're completely covered by entrance, so that's nice to see.
We know that they're a little more socialists, a lot
more socialist than the US and a lot of the
countries and offer a lot more, especially when it comes

to universal healthcare.

Speaker 1 (09:09):
So I feel like.

Speaker 4 (09:10):
That's gonna be why it tops a lot of it off.
But maybe that's just me reading into things at where
we don't have that number four Canada, which you were
just that So did you feel like, once again I
tell you it'll be the expert.

Speaker 1 (09:25):
Now this was a big country for women.

Speaker 2 (09:27):
Really, I have no space to be the expert.

Speaker 1 (09:30):
Really, since you've been there and I have not, this
is where it's at.

Speaker 3 (09:33):
Okay, I was there for a very specific conference. I
happened to Canada multiple times, but this last time I
was there for a very specific conference and it was
a puppetry festival and it was lovely and again I
had a wonderful time and I felt like in the
specific venues and events I went to, it was very.

Speaker 2 (09:58):
I don't know, fifty to fifty or maybe a little
more women than men. So that was I don't know
what that really means.

Speaker 1 (10:03):
But so I've also been in Canada.

Speaker 4 (10:06):
I do have a friend who lives in Canada, and
I have gone to see her and really loved like
hanging out with her.

Speaker 1 (10:12):
It was in Ontario.

Speaker 4 (10:13):
I think she's about to move to like Halifax, and
I'm like, yeah, I gotta go see and green Gables
home place. Obviously Prince Edward Island, I have to go
to there, but yeah.

Speaker 1 (10:22):
I don't know.

Speaker 4 (10:24):
Obviously I wouldn't know this either because we didn't live
in that area and get the benefits of the gender
gap being fairly close, as well.

Speaker 1 (10:33):
As health care and all of that. But it seems nice.
I would love that.

Speaker 3 (10:38):
Yeah. I feel like this is the problem we're going
to run into with this, Samantha, is that we don't
live in these places, right.

Speaker 1 (10:44):
Right, So.

Speaker 4 (10:46):
If in these places, please tell us about it and
how you love it or don't like it or feel
like it is.

Speaker 1 (10:51):
Great, sonets us to move there. Please. It doesn't take much, honestly,
it won't take us, it won't take much. I will go,
I will go there.

Speaker 4 (11:12):
Number three was Norway and I think we three out
of one hundred and fifty six countries like day that's
number three. It says generous paternally leave mothers can take
thirty five weeks at full pay or forty five weeks
at eighty percent pay, according to the World Economics Forum.

Speaker 1 (11:30):
So they have a.

Speaker 4 (11:31):
Really big appreciation for understanding that being a mother and
giving birth is taxing and deserves to be paid.

Speaker 1 (11:39):
Yep, that would be nice to see.

Speaker 2 (11:41):
It would be.

Speaker 1 (11:42):
Number two is Denmark. I want to go. I want
to go to the Denmarks. It moved down.

Speaker 4 (11:49):
It was apparently number one at one point, but now
it's at number two. The government promotes gender quality by
offering an earnings related daycare system and parental leaf policy
that is probably one of the most flexible in the EU.

Speaker 1 (12:04):
So that's good to know.

Speaker 4 (12:05):
Again, there's a lot to be said about women feeling like, oh,
I'm gonna be taking care of for these inconvenience. It's
not that being pregnant it's an inconvenience, but it can
be Let's be honest, it's not it's not a beautiful
it's not always a you know, it's not glowy.

Speaker 1 (12:22):
Happy times for most women. It's hard.

Speaker 2 (12:26):
It is very hard.

Speaker 1 (12:27):
It's hard.

Speaker 2 (12:28):

Speaker 4 (12:29):
And then number one Sweden, uh moved up one position,
so they they out did did Mark Ooh I.

Speaker 1 (12:40):
Want to see I want to see Sweden? And did Mark? Well,
just fight. I'm just kidding, don't just kidding, just kidding,
just kidding.

Speaker 4 (12:46):
But this is twenty twenty one, so the twenty twenty
two report will be interesting. It was the most progressive
attitudes towards gender quality, which was according to a report
released by you gov, a UK based market research firm.
So yeah, apparently a lot of the Nordic countries really
top this list. And I think that says a lot.
How cold is Sweden?

Speaker 2 (13:05):
Though it's pretty cold. I had a friend who looked
for a couple of.

Speaker 1 (13:08):
Years see I would like it, but it's too cold.

Speaker 2 (13:11):
Yeah, it's true. I find that really interesting.

Speaker 3 (13:14):
I did find this was like at least ten years ago,
so please don't quote me on this, but I did
find a really interesting article once I was talking about
possible link between fashion and happiness for women and in
colder countries, like you're covered up in your body might
not be as objectified. Not to say that you can't
be objectified in anything, but that was just an interesting

I never really thought about that before, right, Yeah, this.

Speaker 2 (13:42):
Is way back in my brain, so.

Speaker 4 (13:45):
Yeah, now it's in my brain too. So they have
more of the rankings in here if you want to
go and look at it. And yes, New Zealand does
make it in the top ten in Switzerland, because I
would have thought Switzerland would have been higher, but they
were like the number seven. So yeah, they have definitely
a lot of rankings. And if you want to keep
looking at this list if you're wondering, Ireland's at thirteen,

Italy is at sixteen on this list, and the United
States is at eighteen. I have more questions, but moving on,
because we are in the US and we were kind
of interested. We did want to look at to see
the happiest cities in the US, and I think I
told you, ay, it was like fourteen out of twenty

five was California based, right, So we're looking at this
list from Mental Flaws, which was released March twenty twenty two,
so just recently they took data from finance sites from
the US Census Bureau, the Bureau of Labor Statistics CDC,

so several different organizations they took it out and did
this whole metric system based on that. And yeah, California
was at the top, including the number one city being Fremont, California.
But I don't see many like southern states on here.
I see Texas technically not southern, but kind of southern.
I guess it's southern, but it's definitely towards west. Arizona

I guess would be a part of that list as well,
But those are the only two that I see. Definitely
nothing from the southeast, which is where we're from in Atlanta.
I'm not very surprised by that any on here. So
it's all this list, Like I said, that's fourteen, that's California.
There's one from Wisconsin, a couple from South Dakota and
North Dakota. I was like, okay, there's one from Texas. Plano,
Texas was at twenty two, which was a surprise. Scottsdale, Arizona.

No shade to Scottsdale, but Arizona is like huh, there's
a lot of ups and down, so it's interesting to see.
And then Madison, Wisconsin, I can see that, and Seattle, Washington,
Oregon is not on here.

Speaker 1 (15:51):
That's surprising.

Speaker 3 (15:52):
Yeah, I mean that's one thing we haven't talked about.
But there's definitely intersections of like race involved in all
of this. Just so many, so many, so many factors,
especially like any kind of self reported thing that happiness
is pretty hard to quantify a lot of times.

Speaker 1 (16:10):
Right, Yeah.

Speaker 4 (16:11):
So of course, again, like the statistics is based on
economic status, so that says a lot of self CDC.

Speaker 1 (16:18):
That says a lot of itself. Yeah.

Speaker 4 (16:22):
This article, if you're wondering what it is, is the
twenty five happiest cities in America. You should go check
it out in Mental Flaws, But within this article talks
about if you can't move to this new city, you
should try this science backed ways to feel happier. In
a twenty fifteen article, it talks about ways to be happy,
including we've talked about it, kind of the self care stuff,

sweat it out, sleep more, go outside, get hobbies, turn
out the.

Speaker 1 (16:50):
Tombs, write it down. It talks about sex.

Speaker 4 (16:53):
No essentially said even if it's a solo session. So Anie,
you're doing great on that. You're doing great on that.

Speaker 1 (16:59):
Thank you. Congratulations.

Speaker 4 (17:01):
So they have all of these kind of backed up.
And we talked about these lists before about how content,
how to.

Speaker 1 (17:06):
Care for yourself, and how to de stress. It's kind
of those same levels about if you can't go to
these cities.

Speaker 4 (17:11):
And of course I would love to travel more, but
I still have a little bit of fear, and I
think that's going to be a whole thing that we
need to go back and talk about the fear of travel. Now,
me as an Asian woman, traveling seems scary.

Speaker 1 (17:23):
I don't want to go to New York. I don't
want to go to.

Speaker 4 (17:25):
California, although I love both of these states.

Speaker 1 (17:29):
However, the rise of Asian.

Speaker 4 (17:31):
Hate crimes, and again, I know it's more that I
see on the news and it's not as common as
I feel, but the fear alone is enough for me.
I feel the same way about Florida. I go to
Florida just to see family and that would be it.
But I definitely don't want to travel right now for
so many reasons, and no incidents have ever happened to me,
but just the fear that it's going to happen has

been a lot of trauma and wariness in traveling alone,
but one day I would love to travel again. And
I know we've talked about before we were having a
conversation with a wonderful traveling agency that we were going
to go to Portugal.

Speaker 1 (18:06):
Which was not on these lists.

Speaker 4 (18:07):
Not we might need to rethink our lists, but going
to Portugal and trying out.

Speaker 1 (18:12):
But because of.

Speaker 4 (18:13):
The pandemic literally I think it was twenty nineteen, in
the twenty nineteens when we started talking about it, twenty
twenty or like maybe by October it did not happen. Y. No,
they are wonderful and have contact with us, but almost
at the beginning of every year to be like how
about this year, yeah.

Speaker 2 (18:31):
Or like the sales pandemic goes right and.

Speaker 1 (18:34):
Still no right.

Speaker 4 (18:36):
Running away from your problems will never, ever, ever solve anything,
except for if you have legitimate reasons to leave, whether
it's you know, jobs or whatever whatnot.

Speaker 1 (18:48):
And that's not what we're saying.

Speaker 4 (18:50):
But it's interesting to see who is on these lists
and how these lists are made, and how realistic these
lists can be for women, non binary, queer people's and
marginalized peoples in general, because I don't know how much
that accounts for it, and I think we've talked about
it before about traveling, finding people who are going out

and really having the real conversations about feeling safe as
a black woman, or I follow an Asian woman who
travels as well and saying these are the places that
I felt safe, these are the experiences that I've had.
But that's very important for us to really see beneath
just the statistics that's for the status quo.

Speaker 3 (19:29):
Right right ray, And as we've said before, happiness is
really important. Stress does impact your physical and mental health,
and it can impact your lifespan. So this is like
a I mean, it can seem frivolous, it's very important.
So that obviously we've thought so because we've had four

very long Monday meetings on it.

Speaker 1 (19:51):
Now we have it's like we would love to hear
from you.

Speaker 4 (19:55):
Tell us what you think. Have you been in these places?
Do you live in these places? And you re disagree?
What do you see?

Speaker 2 (20:01):

Speaker 1 (20:02):
Any of that?

Speaker 4 (20:02):
Or tell us if you disagree with the list that
we're like, yeah, no, you're wrong, this is another happy
place that you didn't talk about.

Speaker 3 (20:07):
Yes, please you can email us stuff DA Mom, stuff Ati,
hurtmedia dot com. You can find us on Twitter, at
mom Stuff podcast or on Instagram. A stuff when Never
Told You. Thanks is always toious super producer Christina.

Speaker 1 (20:18):
Our magic maker.

Speaker 3 (20:20):
Yes, and thanks to you for listening stuff and never
Told you sspections of iHeart Radio for more podcast from
my Heart Radio because he ihardradio app Apple Podcasts regular
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