We often blog about stressful topics - car accidents, work injuries, appealing a denial of disability benefits, and many other high-stress situations - that affect our fellow Wisconsinites and our neighbors in Minnesota. As such, we were intrigued when we saw a recently created ranking that shows which states are the most and least stressed. While we often encounter people at some of their most stressful times in life, it's interesting to see how the state population (as a whole) ranks in relation to stress levels.
How did Wisconsin fare in these rankings? Are Wisconsinites as chilled out and steady-handed as we like to think? Or are we secretly stressed out and don't even know it?
Wisconsin's stress ranking
According to the data compiled by WalletHub, Wisconsin has the 6th lowest stress levels. Wisconsin did especially well in the categories for work-related stress, money-related stress, and family-related stress. The state's worst ranking was in the health- and safety-related stress category.
How does Wisconsin compare to other states in the rankings?
The state with the most stress is Louisiana, which nearly doubled the "stress score" that was assigned to Wisconsin.
The title of least-stressed state belongs to our neighbors to the West: Minnesota. Minnesota had the best ranking in the health- and safety-related category, as well as the money-related category. It also was near the top for the other categories, and the combined score allowed it to top the rankings with a score that was 24 percent lower (lower is better in this instance) than Wisconsin's score.
It's a regional thing
Other states that ranked as less stressed than Wisconsin include (in order from lower stress to higher stress) are:
- North Dakota
- South Dakota
Overall, the Upper Midwest was well-represented in the top of the study (5 of the 6 least-stressed states), so Wisconsin and its neighbors are doing very well on a regional scale.
How did they determine stress levels?
The study looked at 38 factors that are commonly associated with stress. Examples of these include:
- Average hours worked per week
- Hours of sleep per night
- Percentage of adults in fair vs. poor health
- Job security
- Credit scores
- Divorce rates
- Crime rates per capita
To learn more about the factors and methodology, check out the full study results.