61% of students have broken their New Year's Resolutions already

It's that time of year when our social media timelines are bombarded with posts by friends and family vowing New Year, New Me - whether this involves becoming healthier, fitter, vegan, using less plastic or giving up smoking.

After the Christmas and New Year period of heavy eating and drinking, one of the most popular challenges we usually hear and read about is ‘Dry January’ - giving up booze for a whole month.

Our new goals and intentions are inspiring, but the increasing pressure of sticking to it (for at least a month, let alone a year) can set us up for a fall.

But how many of us actually manage to keep the resolutions we make?

We published a series of polls (5 individual questions) on Facebook throughout January asking students whether they are taking part in New Year challenges, such as Dry January, new health and fitness routines, or changing their money habits etc. And whether they have stuck to their promises up until now.

Key findings from the polls:

▶︎ Out of 2,800 votes for poll 1, 75% of students are NOT taking part in 'Dry January'

▶︎ 82% of 1000 respondents are going to try and change their spending habits this year (poll 3)

▶︎ Out of 1,032 students who answered poll 4, 61% said they have already broken their New Year's Resolution/s (20 days into January)

▶︎ 817/1000 students answered that they NEVER manage to keep their New Year promises all year round (poll 5)

You may think everyone around you is jumping on the Dry January bandwagon, but our results show otherwise - On January 2nd 2019, we shared a poll on Facebook asking students -

Are you taking part in 'Dry January'?

Out of 2,800 poll votes - 25% voted 'NO' and 75% voted 'YES'.

Here are a few comments we received under this poll:

“January is a long month, can’t be arsed”

“Pretty sure at midnight on New Year’s Day I was drinking vodka”

“Not just January, the whole year”

According to the University of Sussex Dry January...

“sees people regaining control of their drinking, having more energy, better skin and losing weight”.

Giving alcohol a miss is also one of the easiest ways to save some cash and instead...spend the money on a new gym membership or fitness classes.

With people taking to social media sharing their Dry January moments, you feel as though maybe it's something you should probably do too.

According to our poll results it seems students aren't as interested in the challenge, most likely because of the social side of drinking, endless student nights out and society events in the New Year.

Back to uni = more nights out in January, right? Plus, after those January exams it's impossible to celebrate without a drink.

Following this question, we asked the next obvious 'New Year, New Me' kind of question -

Are you starting a new health/fitness routine this January? ★

1,400 students answered this poll - the results showed 32% answered 'YES' and 68% asnwered 'NO'.

Respondents commented:

“Already healthy and fit as that's how I live my life. Nothing new needs to change here”
“Yup, because I have fibromyalgia and exercise helps but I couldn't afford the gym last month so waited for the inevitable 'New Year offers'”
“More exercise - less stress!”
“Because of burritos and booze. That's why”

According to YouGov, 'exercise more' and 'eat healthier' are the most popular resolutions for 2019. Looking at our results it's surprising to see that 956 students out of 1,400 respondents answered that they are not thinking of starting a new health/fitness routine.

Comments from respondents explained that there is no need for a change as they already have a good health and fitness routine.

Following the festive period, it's not just our food intake and health we are conscious of, but also our bank balance. One of the most common themes for New Year challenges is to save more money.

We shared a poll asking students -

Are you going to try and change your spending habits this New Year?

Our results show that 63% out of 1000 voters are going to try and and change their spending habits this New Year. Whereas, 37% answered they are not.

The first few months of the university year (starting from September/October) can often mean a long stretch of partying, socialising and just generally spending a lot for students up until Christmas. Especially as Exams don't start to kick in until January and the months following. So from January onwards it's a time to knuckle down and desperately save some money to get back on track for the rest of the year. So it's not surprising to see a larger amount of votes answering 'YES' to saving money!

At the start of every year, many of us find ourselves wondering how to keep the New Year's Resolution/s we've set for ourselves. Sometimes, it almost seems like resolutions are just meant to be broken...You only have to check out the gym in January and then again a month later to see the difference.

Deciding to make positive changes, like giving up a bad habit or taking up a healthier one, is always a good idea. But it can be really tricky to stick to these resolutions.

20 days into January we asked our Facebook audience -

So far, have you stuck to your January New Year Resolution/s?

Luckily, if you're reading this and you've already broken your resolutions, you're not alone. 1,032 students answered our poll and the results showed 39% answered 'YES', whereas 61% answered 'NO'.

Often, the problem isn't that we aren't capable of sticking to our resolutions - it's that we need to do a better job making resolutions that are actionable and achievable.

Our final poll was to find out whether students usually manage to keep their New Year's Resolution:

★ In previous years, have you managed to keep your New Year's Resolution/s all year round? ★

Don't be too hard on yourself - our results show that 82% of the students who voted in our poll answered 'NEVER'. A small 18% answered that they 'USUALLY' manage to keep their resolutions.

Well, there's no point in putting yourself down too much for your lack of self-restraint.

There's something everyone can learn from this, pick yourself up and instead celebrate smaller wins toward smaller goals! Do things gradually. It's far more likely to work for you and it means you can eventually work towards larger goals, and actually get there!

It's never too late to start.