Downside of Life in a Rich Nation: More Stress

New study finds that those who live in poorer countries are less stressed
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 28, 2014 1:25 PM CDT

(Newser) – One unhappy side effect of living in a well-off country? The people who live in the richest countries experience more stress and anger than those who live in less wealthy nations, a new study finds. "Life [in an affluent country] is more fast-paced, and there are just so many things that you have to do," the study author, a psychology professor at Purdue, explains to LiveScience. "You have higher expectations, and more choices available to you, as compared to someone who might be in a poorer country, experiencing a slower pace of life and less demands."

Researchers looked at income data from almost 840,000 people in 158 nations, who had also reported their level of life satisfaction and how often they experienced feelings like worry, sadness, and anger. Another interesting finding: Those who lived in wealthier countries expressed higher levels of life satisfaction than those who made a similar amount of money, but lived in poorer countries. The lead researcher thinks factors like infrastructure and crime rates, which are influenced by a country's economic stability, could explain that finding.

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