The World According to Emotions

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How much did you laugh or smile today? Were you dying with the chuckles all day, or were you a stone wall? If you were in the position of the former then the Gallup polling firm would declare you very emotional.

For the past three years, the polling firm has been surveying people in every single country, asking them the above question, along with a series of similar questions. The more times a person answered “yes” to one of their questions, the more emotional they were deemed to be.

Now, we can see the results, in a nice color coded map, displaying the world, as ranked by emotionality. Neat right? The countries shaded with purple are the most emptional, while countries in yellow are the least emotional.

What’s more interesting, are the results themselves. Obviously, America was pretty jazzed all the time, while less prosperous countries showed lower results. Coming in dead last though, a fairly prosperous country, Singapore.

”Singaporeans recognize they have a problem,” Bloomberg Businessweek writes of the country’s “emotional deficit,” citing a culture in which schools “discourage students from thinking of themselves as individuals.” They also point to low work satisfaction, competitiveness, and the urban experience: “Staying emotionally neutral could be a way of coping with the stress of urban life in a place where 82 percent of the population lives in government-built housing.” 

What’s even more surprising is that the country taking the gold medal in emotionality, is one that is no stranger to struggle. The Philippines.

Jezebel writer Lindy West summed up the results saying, “It’s nice to see emotionality portrayed in a neutral—if not a positive—light, for once. Oh, you’re SO EMOTIONAL…just like scenic Italy!!! Score.”

It’s definitely interesting looking at the world from this perspective, and considering the personal stories that come alone with each country’s results. While no concrete conclusions can be drawn from the map, it’ll at least give you something to think about.

Image Credit: The Washington Post/ Max Fisher 


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