Smile! Today is International Happiness Day!

Allison Sodha

Have you smiled today? The United Nations has declared March 20th the International Day of Happiness. The World Happiness Report - yes, there is such a thing! - has listed the top 10 happiest countries based on elements that include social support, life expectancy and GDP. Most of the countries are located in Europe, with Canada and Australia also making the list. I am actually cheerful just thinking about an official report that ranks happy people and cultures!

In July 2011, the UN General Assembly passed a resolution asking member countries to determine the joy of its residents. The happiness factors would then influence public policy. Not surprisingly, the initiative was chaired by the Prime Minister of Bhutan - Bhutan being the first country in the world to implement Gross National Happiness (GNH). Check out the 2013 World Happiness Report to learn more about the rankings and objectives. (By the way, India is ranked #111, Nepal #135, and Sri Lanka #137.)

Indian kids

So in the words of Pharrell, "Come on, get happy!" I wish you all a happy day!

Allison Sodha

Written by Allison Sodha

As the President of Sodha Travel and author of Go! Girl Guides India, Allison has spent almost two decades exploring South Asia. She has a passion for creating experiences fueled by a deeper understanding of local communities.