Pinoys among world's most positive people

Kim Arveen Patria
Kim Arveen Patria
Yahoo! Southeast Asia Newsroom
Zamboanga city is marketed as Asia's Latin city. One of the highlights of the Hermosa Festival is the street dance competition participated by different schools, held a day before the actual fiesta, October 12. Dancers are dressed in the traditional Hispanic costumes; they are seen in Flamenco dresses, Fallera dresses, ruffled skirts, butterfly sleeve, mantilla, peineta comb, barong, and sombrero cordobés. (Photo by Gael Hilotin)

Pinoys may not be the richest based on "traditional economic indicators," but they didn't have to be rich at all to be counted among the world's most positive people, results of a new poll showed.

The Philippines was ranked 7th out of 148 countries in terms of "highest positive emotions worldwide" in a list put out by U.S. pollster Gallup.

Results of the survey, which Gallup said showed that "higher income does not necessarily mean higher well-being," are based on telephone and face-to-face interviews conducted in 2011 with 1,000 adults globally

Respondents were asked "whether they experienced a lot of enjoyment the day before the survey and whether they felt respected, well-rested, laughed and smiled a lot, and did or learned something interesting."

Related story: PH named 'most emotional society' in global list

Despite their penchant for melancholic soap opera, the percentage of Pinoy respondents who admitted experiencing positive emotions is higher than the global average according to the survey.

This, even as Gallup noted a "relatively upbeat world," with results showing that 85 percent of total respondents worldwide felt treated with respect, 72 percent smiled and laughed a lot, 73 percent felt enjoyment and 72 percent felt well-rested.

"The only emotion that less than half of people worldwide reported experiencing was getting to learn or do something interesting the previous day, at 43 percent," Gallup said.

"Despite many global challenges, people worldwide are experiencing many positive emotions," it noted.

Also read: Fewer Pinoys expect lives to improve, SWS says

Latin Americans are found to be the most positive people in the world, with eight countries in the region landing in the top 10 of the list.

Panama and Paraguay shared the top spot with 85 percent of respondents admitting feeling positive emotions.

They were followed by El Salvador and Venezuela, tied at 84 percent; as well as Trinidad and Tobago and Thailand, 83 percent.

The Philippines shared the 7th spot with Guatemala.

Rounding out the top 10 in the list are Eucador and Costa Rica, which both posted positivity scores of 81 percent.

Related story: Why the world can’t afford to end on 12-21-12 for Pinoys

"These data may surprise analysts and leaders who solely focus on traditional economic indicators," Gallup said.

It noted that Panama, which topped the list of countries with positive emotions, ranks 90th in the world with respect to gross domestic product per capita.

Residents of Singapore, on the other hand, which ranks 5th in the world in terms of GDP per capita, are the least likely to report positive emotions.

Singapore emerged as the country with the "least positive emotions worldwide," with less than half (46 percent) of respondents saying they experienced positive emotions.

It was followed by Armenia at 49 percent; Iraq, 50 percent; Georgia, Yemen and Serbia, 52 percent; Belarus, 53 percent; as well as Lithuania and Madagascar, 54 percent.

Sharing the 10th spot in terms of being least positive are Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Togo and Macedonia, all at 55 percent.

Gallup said the survey showed that "leaders who are looking for ways to further improve the human condition in their… need to do more to incorporate wellbeing into their leadership strategies."