Society » Real life stories

Russian happiness

What does it take to be truly happy in Russia

It is no secret that every family has its happy and sad moments. Before the upcoming International Family Day, Russian sociologists decided to conduct their own research and determine what constitutes happiness among Russian families.

The research work was conducted by two groups of sociologists simultaneously: ROMIR Monitoring and Analytical center of Yuri Levada.

Levada's Analytical center paid closer attention to general demands of average Russians. When asked what goals each family member posed before him/herself, 50% answered that they simply want to live a “normal life”, “no worse than everybody else.” At the same time, nearly the same percentage of our people already lives “no worse than others” and, at times, their lifestyle exceeds that of others. 

According to sociologists, 46% attribute themselves to the middle class. 11% of the respondents are striving to live like an average family in Western Europe and the US or even better.

Sociologists also note that Russian families spend major portion of their family budget on food. 32% of respondents stated that they usually spend about 50% of their income for food per month; 28% of Russians spend more than 65% of their money on food and another 27% spend their entire salaries on food. It turned out that only 11% of people spend less than a half of their monthly salaries on food.

As far as family spirituality is concerned, sociologists notice significant improvement in Russian families. Majority of respondents (54%) declared that they always manage to solve their problems. In a year, a total number of such optimists has increased by 2%.

26% (1500) of respondents claim to have peaceful and happy family atmosphere; whereas even a year ago, only 22% could brag about their family happiness. Interestingly, young people (18-24) tend to speak about peaceful environment within their families more often.

ROMIR Monitoring has calculated that only 2% of Russians live in poverty and does not get enough to eat. 3% state that they barely make their ends meat; the same number of respondents (3%) lives well and can afford anything they want. Majority of respondents (45%) appear to be quite satisfied with their lives even though they do have to work twice as hard.