Is Liverpool nearly as unhappy as Wolverhampton? How does your personality match with the place you live? Try this calculator to find out:
Apparently they’re the two places in the U.K. where more people rate their happiness lower than 5 out of 10. Which just goes to show that you can’t trust polls! Its all based on research by universities in Cambridge and Helsinki asking people to assess their own personality traits – and they noticed ‘clusters’ of certain traits in particular parts of the country. People in large cities tended to be more open, various places in the Midlands more conscientious, Scotland’s people most agreeable.
There may be a serious side to this though – how aware are we of our own personality traits and our interactions with the culture around us? So many of us find it easy to live in a bubble, only interacting with a few people and mainly spending time with our headphones on or watching TV. All this can become distraction, avoidance of having to spend much time with ourselves. Meditation and mindfulness can be a means to step away from the endless media chatter and into a real relationship with our true selves, to grow and mature, to see our shell of distraction for what it is – a straitjacket – and step out of it into the real world which surrounds us in all its wonder.
As for me, I’m very happy in Liverpool – though the calculator did say I’d be marginally happier across the water in Wirral. It also said I’d be even happier at some places in the East Midlands I’ve never heard of (Bosworth and Hinckley). No doubt they’re nice places, but I’ll not be moving any time soon!