How important is WHERE you live to your happiness?

posted 2 years ago in The Lounge
Post # 2
538 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2018 - City, State

We live near several major cities, but in a place that is affordable enough that we can have a large apartment on our student-loan-addled salaries. These criteria were SUPER important to how we decided where to live. 

The exact geographical region < the confluence of factors (semi-suburban, near several major cities, liberal area where we and our diverse friend group feel safe)

So yeah, I think the general “Why” of where we live is a major contributor to our happiness.

Post # 3
153 posts
Blushing bee

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Anonymous1063 :  I totally think it makes a big difference! I love green/ the ocean and currently live in the desert. It’s growing on me… but I think that I’m lucky because even if I live in the desert – I live in a pretty cute town with a lot to do. Also, with that, I do travel back home to the sea pretty often 🙂

Post # 4
718 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2021

I live here by default because it’s where I’m from and my entire family is here.  If I didn’t like my state, though, I’d move.  Things I love about it are: close to family, miles from a major city with lots to do, high standard of living for low(ish) cost.  I wish it was warmer, but I also enjoy having all four seasons.  I do think I could be happy anywhere because I’m a happy person, but I choose to stay here for those reasons.

Post # 5
9284 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

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Anonymous1063 :  I think we could be happy pretty much anywhere if we could take all of our favorite people along with us lol. I can’t see myself ever living far from the ocean though – that salty sea air is good for the soul! 

Post # 6
2583 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

I’m not at all living where I want to live & it definitely takes atoll on my happiness. Holding out 2 more years until our last child graduates high school. Then we’re moving 

Post # 7
781 posts
Busy bee

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Anonymous1063 :  Interesting question. I have always thought that where I live, can play a significant role in my day in/day out moods. I love rainy days in the winter, and for the holidays, BUT too much of that I begin getting depressed. I cant live in overcasted states/cities. It’s a reason we are planning to move within a year or so; SO and I want to settle down in a city with weather and a community that we will enjoy. 

Post # 8
3062 posts
Sugar bee

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Anonymous1063 :  Yes and no

i think i could adjust to another area/style of living. They all come with their pros and cons. 

I love where I live. SoCal has great weather, close to the beaches, close to the city but far enough away from the noise and traffic. Snow is close by, Desert is close by. Lots of stuff to do! We have both stated that we would like to stay in this state, even though its darn expensive. 

But i have always pictured myself in the suburbs. It would be a big adjustment for me to live the city life. (traffic, high rises, no parking etc.) BUT you also have access to a lot of stuff in close proximity, amazing food, active nightlife. 

It all depends on what is important to you. I really like my quiet little neighborhood and walking my dog, saying hi to friendly neighbors, but being able to take a short drive to the city. It is close to where i grew up and I am happy to stay in this area. SO grew up in the middle of Los Angeles and he LOVES it out here now, especially the hiking trails. 


I think it would be very hard for me to live in a harsh.cold climate though. We are a bunch of whiners here, anything below 60 degrees F and were freezing LOL. 

Post # 9
414 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2019

I think it is a big factor. Not only nature wise, but also the people etc. Especially security issues are a big deal.

And then of course, if it is possible to do the things you like to do. Your attitude towards things is very important to, but if you’re limited in many ways, you can have the best attitude and still be affected by not being able to do certain things.

Post # 10
3513 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2018

It makes a big difference to us.  We live in a somewhat small, walkable / bikeable town.  We don’t have traffic or commutes.  We can get up into Forest Service recreation trails in a 15 minute drive.  All very important to us!

We do have like 7 months of winter so there’s that….  We ski (downhill and xc) so that helps.

Post # 11
2797 posts
Sugar bee

It’s easily one of the biggest factors to quality of life. To start with extremes, living in one country vs. another can mean a huge jump in safety, quality of life, employment possibilities and pay, access to health care and basic infastructure, freedom of religion, etc.

Within the same country, there are still huge gaps in opportunity and access to services based on location. Even moving a few blocks away can make a big difference if it comes with a better school district to increase opportunities for your kids. And if you’re a minority of any kind, living in one area vs. another can have even more drastic outcomes not only in terms of happiness and acceptance but also basic personal safety.

More generally, things like weather, cost of living, political leanings, access to cultural activities, social climate, etc. make a big difference for many/most people. How much those things impact you will really vary, though. If you happily work from home and rarely go out, you may care less about the culture of your location than someone who enjoys being very involved in their community.

Personally, I know I’m very impacted by my environment (after making several major moves so far, including a cross country move). My husband and I are looking to move in the next few years (not sure where yet) to look for someplace with better weather and cost of living. Our current location is good for jobs, but bad for quality of life. 

Post # 12
11098 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

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Anonymous1063 :  

Extremely important.  Dh and I talked for years about escape our high COL area.  There were lots of other issues that made where we were living just a bad match for us.  It may be paradise for someone else, just wrong for us on so many levels.

I finally pushed it.  We played around with a few locations.  Dh’s job is portable, but he would not enjoy the same seniority at a new location. We narrowed it down to three.  My first choice; a place I had never been and knew no one ultimately won.

We’ve been here for four years and we are deliriously happy.  We are in a lovely neighborhood that is seven minutes from absolutely everything.  The community is clean and well kept.  The people are super friendly and polite. There is better diversity than I had expected. No state income tax.  Our house was reasonably priced. There is beautiful greenery every and there are plenty of lakes and rivers. Jobs are plentiful. The medical care is exceptional. We have an emergency vet hospital literally four minutes away, across the street from our regular vet, who is excellent. I could go on.

In the minus column:  too much traffic and really bad drivers.  I’m starting to think that’s why everyone is so nice.  They vent all of their anger while they’re driving.


Post # 13
229 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

Totally important. Things like cost of living can affect your entire life. We live in the Midwest USA, and hubby’s family is from Toronto and his sister swears our house $500k would be $2M in her neighborhood. Since things are cheaper, we can afford more vacations, have no debt, and less stress. We live super close to shops and good restaurants, walking trails, and the airport. Works out well

Post # 14
1949 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2019

It’s funny, because I think about this often. I grew up in a military family, so we’ve lived in some amazing places, and some terrible places. In general, I think that it probably doesn’t make as big of a difference as people think. On the other hand, I live in a college town in the south, and am OVER the hot weather and dislike that I have to drive an hour to get to an airport or concert or really anything fun. We know we’d like to move, but are unsure of when/where. 

Post # 15
6842 posts
Busy Beekeeper

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Anonymous1063 :  I’d say it’s about 50% important, the other part being who I’m with, career and the like. I would like to be closer to friends and family but it’s not feasible without one or the other of us being even farther than we already are (we grew up on opposite coasts). So we compromised on that by picking the Southwest.

I would hate living in an urban area, even a small town got on my nerves. So important to be rural, have land instead of staring right into the neighbor’s house, keep our shades open, etc. I tried the city thing in college and every few weeks just had to get the hell away for a weekend. It’s not for me, even with all the cultural opportunities available. Too big a tradeoff. Never thought about it before, but apparently I’d rather leave my family 2000 miles away than live in a city…

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