A new year is the perfect time to discover a new you! Find out how to make your goals a reality with these fun facts about New Year’s resolutions!
After the New Year’s Eve celebrations are over and we find ourselves in a brand new year, it’s time to reflect and see just what we can do to change our life for the better.
That’s where New Year’s resolutions come into play. We set goals or ambitions to improve ourselves and our relationships, but are we going about it the right way?
Read on to learn tons of fun facts about New Year’s resolutions including which are the most popular, where did we come up with such an idea, and most importantly, how to make them stick.
So what will it be for you this year? To be kinder to people? To lose a few pesky pounds? To run a marathon? Or how about flossing on a regular basis instead of just before a dentist appointment?
From life-changing goals to small improvements in your day to day life, New Year’s resolutions can be a big motivating factor in changing our ways.
So let’s discover more New Year’s resolutions facts and make this year the year we implement positive changes that last a lifetime. We believe in you!
15 Fun Facts About New Year’s Resolutions
1. Thank the Babylonians
It was over 4,000 years ago when the Babylonians were trying to be better people in the new year.
The deeply religious resolutions made during the celebration called Akitu, were a re-commitment to God. Much more intense than a resolution to eat less cake!
2. The Empire of resolutions
Carrying on the Babylonain tradition were the Romans (who invented the month of January by the way).
At their new year they offered up promises to the Roman god of beginnings and endings, Janus. Out with the old and in with the new!
3. Healthy and fit
You’re probably wondering what the most common New Year’s resolution is. No surprise here, it’s exercise!
In fact, it is estimated that close to 40% of New Year’s resolutions involve fitness and exercise. Dust off those trainers, take a spin class, or throw in a few burpees every morning to make good on your New Year’s promise.
4. The risk of failure
Okay, okay, we can talk all positive and hopeful at the beginning of the year when the possibilities are endless, but what are the cold hard numbers about success and failure?
Get ready for the most humbling New Year’s resolutions facts we found. 22% fail after 1 week. 40% fail after one month. 60% fail after 3 months. You’re up against it, but if you can do it, you’ve really beaten the odds.
5. Say it out loud
Here’s a good tip to make sure your resolutions will stick: tell someone about it! It’s been found that the best way to be accountable to your New Year’s resolutions is to vocalize them.
This strategy takes your goal or ambition out of your head and out into the real world!
6. Geography of resolutions
A Google study in 2012 revealed that your country says a lot about your main ambitions for the new year.
In the US and Canada, health related goals were the most popular. In Australia, Japan and Korea it was love and relationships. And in India, career advancement topped the list.
7. The sweet smell of success
We already talked about the depressing reality of failure, so let’s throw a little bit of hope into these fun facts about New Year’s resolutions.
There is a chance that your resolution will become an everlasting change. A University of Scranton study found that 8% of people keep their resolution for a full year!
8. Another religious fact
If there’s one thing we’ve discovered searching for the best New Year’s resolutions facts is that a lot of the tradition is based on religious practice.
In fact, predominantly protestant countries like the USA, UK, Canada and Australia are much more likely to make a New Year’s resolution.
9. Effects of the pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic changed our desire to eat healthier in the new year. In January 2020, before the worst of the pandemic, internet searches for fast food compared to December 2019 dropped by 20%.
In January 2021, in the midst of the pandemic, the drop in January from December was only 2%.
10. Top 5 resolutions
Twitter did a poll in 2017 and found out what the most common New Year’s Resolutions were for their users. Any guesses for the top 5?
1) Diet, exercise, weight loss 2) Read more 3) Learn something new 4) Save money 5) Be kinder/more patient
11. Older and wiser
Young people obviously haven’t been jaded by all the failed New Year’s resolutions of the past because they are more likely to make resolutions.
A YouGov poll found that 32% of people between 18-24 will make a resolution for the new year. In the 55+ age bracket that number plummets to only 10%.
12. Sober month
One of the most common New Year’s Resolutions is to drink less alcohol. This resolution is likely so popular because of the tendency to get a little boozy during the holidays.
This has given rise to the Dry January movement. That’s right, no drinking for 31 days.
13. USA vs UK
We mentioned their religious histories make the US and UK more likely to make New Year’s resolutions, but who is more inclined to set a lofty goal for January 1st?
It is the US by a long shot. 39% of adults in fact, compared to just 16% of adults in the UK.
14. The day we decide to quit
The fitness app Strava has collected data from over 100 million user-logged activities and have discovered some interesting insights into New Year’s resolutions.
They found the most common day for people to quit their fitness resolutions is on January 19th. In fact, they have labeled it Quitter’s Day and use it in their marketing and promotion efforts.
15. How to frame your goals
There are two main types of goals to consider when setting your New Year’s resolutions. Approach-oriented and avoidance-oriented.
It’s been shown that approach-oriented goals (losing 10 pounds) are more likely to succeed than avoidance-oriented goals (stop eating cake) by almost 20%.
Who wants more fun facts?
If you’re looking for some recommendations, these are a few of our favorite fact books to buy. We use these when planning fun trivia nights with family and friends!
Did these fun facts about New Year’s resolutions inspire you to make a change? Tell us what changes you plan on making this year in the comments in the comments below.