Singapore ranks as world’s most emotionless society: survey

UPDATE at 22 Nov, 4:30pm: Adds Gallup partner's advice to Singapore leaders on improving citizens' lives

Are Singaporeans unfeeling?

The city state has been ranked the most emotionless society in the world, according to a Gallup poll.

The U.S. pollster conducted the survey in over 140 countries and asked questions such as: ‘Did you smile laugh a lot yesterday?’, ‘Felt respected or well-rested?’ and ‘Did you experience the following feelings a lot during the day yesterday? (Enjoyment, physical pain, worry, sadness, stress, anger)’.

Only 36 per cent of Singaporeans polled responded affirmatively to the questions – the lowest behind Georgia, Lithuania, and Russia.

On the other end of the spectrum, the Philippines came up tops as the most emotional society ahead of El Salvador and Bahrain.

Yahoo! Singapore sought the views of Singaporeans on these survey results.

Jose Raymond, executive director of the Singapore Environment Council and district councilor of the North East Community Development Council, disagrees with the poll, believing that Singaporeans are more than capable of expressing their emotions.

He said, “I don't think Singaporeans are an emotionless bunch. And based on my interaction with many Singaporeans, I can safely conclude that there are a lot of them who are either happy, sad, angry or worried of one thing or another.

“The very fact that we have a national conversation going on, and that quite a fair bit of Singaporeans have come forward to share air their thoughts and views show that people do care about what they want, and about what they hope for the future,” he added.

Luana Low, a public relations manager, believes it’s not that Singaporeans are lacking in emotions, but that they do not care enough.

She said, “I think that in our striving for excellence such as the paper chase and career, we end up missing out on a lot of the other things in life. We end up becoming more apathetic to societal events and changes around us.

“I don't think it's so much that we're emotionless, it's more that we don't really care about what's going on around,” she added.

Jon Clifton, a Gallup partner in Washington, feels that Singaporeans are sacrificing economic success and stability for what truly matters.

“If you measure Singapore by the traditional indicators, they look like one of the best-run countries in the world,” he was quoted as saying. “But if you look at everything that makes life worth living, they’re not doing so well.”

He also added, "This research shows that the solutions to improve positive emotions or decrease negative emotions do not necessarily go beyond higher incomes.

"Singapore leadership needs to consider strategies that lie outside of the traditional confines of classic economics and would be well-advised to include wellbeing in its overall strategies if it is going to further improve the lives of its citizenry."

What’s your view? Do you think Singaporeans are lacking in emotions?

  • Wednesday #sgroundup: More than 300 people missing after South Korean ferry sinks - coastguard 2 hours 21 minutes ago
    Wednesday #sgroundup: More than 300 people missing after South Korean ferry sinks - coastguard

    Here are the top trending stories of the day in case you missed them:

  • 2015 Chevrolet Trax small SUV rolls back to America 14 hours ago
    2015 Chevrolet Trax small SUV rolls back to America

    For the past two years, car shoppers from Acapulco to Winnipeg could wander into their Chevy dealers and kick the tires on a city-sized sport utility vehicle named the Trax — and about 90,000 have done so. Today, Chevy revealed the version of the Trax it will bring to the United States, for those less well-heeled buyers who want the shape of an SUV without the window sticker they usually carry.

  • Ford Transit Skyliner concept revives the ultra-luxury van 16 hours ago
    Ford Transit Skyliner concept revives the ultra-luxury van

    “Once you do stand-up, you don’t want to go back.” No, we’re not talking about comedy, but rather an emerging trend in luxury transport that’s bringing us ever taller, more capacious, more pimpdillyicious limousines. The quote came from a Ford designer, Tim Stoehr, predicting an increase in interest in limos based on big vans like the new Transit. Of course, these are nothing new; up-fitters have taken quite kindly to the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, and apparently Ford is chomping at the bit to get in on the action, too. So Ford enlisted the help of the largest Ford dealer in the world, Galpin Auto Sports in Van Nuys, Calif., to help design and build its first super-lux Transit concept, dubbed the Skyliner.

  • Amazon to release smartphone later this year: report
    Amazon to release smartphone later this year: report

    Amazon is preparing to release a smartphone in the second half of 2014, thrusting itself into a market already crowded with Apple and Samsung models, The Wall Street Journal reported. The company aims to announce its new product by the end of June and ship to customers by the end of September in time for the holidays, the Journal said in a Friday report, citing unnamed people briefed on the matter. Amazon, it said, hopes to differentiate its phone from other models with a screen that displays hologram-like three-dimensional images, which can be viewed without special glasses. Earlier this month the retailer unveiled a new media streaming device, Amazon Fire TV, which it touted as simplifying the experience of watching video online.

  • Supermodel Qi Qi is afraid of flying
    Supermodel Qi Qi is afraid of flying

    The supermodel said that she will take her daughter in a vacation but will try to avoid boarding a plane

  • One dead as S. Korea ferry with 476 passengers sinks
    One dead as S. Korea ferry with 476 passengers sinks

    South Korea's coastguard said Wednesday one person had been killed as it struggled to rescue 476 people -- mostly high school students -- aboard a ferry that ran aground and sank off the southern coast. "The ferry is almost completely submerged," Lee said, adding that a detachment of South Korean Navy SEALS were taking part in the rescue. Of the 450 passengers on board the ferry bound for the southern resort island of Jeju, 325 were students from a high school in Ansan, south of Seoul. The 6,825-tonne ferry, which had sailed out of the western port of Incheon on Tuesday evening, ran into trouble some 20 kilometres (13 miles) off the island of Byungpoong.