Hawaii residents reported the highest well-being in the U.S. in 2018, reaching the top spot for the seventh time since Gallup began tracking well-being in 2008. Hawaii and Colorado have ranked among the top 10 states in well-being for the 11th consecutive year, the only two states to do so. West Virginia residents reported the lowest well-being for the 10th straight year.
Wyoming, Alaska, Montana and Utah – all states that have frequented the top 10 list in past years – rounded out the top five in 2018. Arkansas, which was ranked 48th in 2017 and 2009, was ranked 49th in 2018 – its lowest level ever – and was followed by Kentucky, Mississippi and Tennessee.
These state-level data are based on more than 115,000 surveys with U.S. adults across all 50 states, conducted in all 12 months of 2018. The Well-Being Index is calculated on a scale of 0 to 100, where 0 represents the lowest possible well-being and 100 represents the highest possible well-being. The Well-Being Index score for the nation and for each state comprises metrics affecting overall well-being and each of the five essential elements of well-being:
Career: liking what you do each day and being motivated to achieve your goals
Social: having supportive relationships and love in your life
Financial: managing your economic life to reduce stress and increase security
Community: liking where you live, feeling safe and having pride in your community
Physical: having good health and enough energy to get things done daily