Exactly What is The UK's Mental Wellbeing?

Exactly What is The UK's Mental Wellbeing?

Britain is officially the 2nd unhappiest country in the world.


This is based on THE MENTAL STATE OF THE WORLD IN 2023 report which is really good. It measures what matters and comes with transparent data and a fully published methodology and rationale.

There is however a caveat!

This is a comparison of ‘internet enabled’ populations which in poor countries puts you in the top 1% so it’s not in the least helpful to use a comparison between UK (almost bottom) and El Salvador (almost top).

However if we take a look at the developed world comparisons it makes total sense. I think in this respect the report is valid.

A good comparison, and one I often use, is Italy and the UK.
Italy is the top developed world country in this report and Britain is at the bottom.

Italy uses half the level of antidepressants that the UK does, and has half the suicides.
This is all per capita and has been true for a number of years.

Italians have strong family and social bonds and the British have weak ones.

Italians express their emotions and Brits suppress them.

So it’s no surprise the Italians are happier. So viva Italia!


The report measures five well supported dimensions of mental health. They are all really important components of psychological well-being and mental functions.

In a number of these dimensions we score lower than any other country.

Here's a brief explanation of each:

  1. Social Self: How we perceive ourselves within social contexts and our interactions with others.
  2. Mood and Outlook: Our emotional state and how we view life situations, whether positively or negatively.
  3. Core Cognition: Fundamental mental processes like perception, attention, and memory.
  4. Complex Cognition: Higher-level thinking skills, including problem-solving, decision-making, and planning.
  5. Drive and Motivation: The forces that propel us to take action, set goals, and strive for achievements.
  6. Mind-Body: The connection between mental and physical health, and how one can affect the other.




#meditation, #resilience and #mindfulness teacher (I’ve taught about 3,000 classes). Founder of @bromleymindfulness and @themeditationcourse
London, England.