We carried out a New Year’s resolutions survey in the run up to the new year. The survey revealed that 85% of people made one or more New Year’s resolutions as they rang in the year 2021. The majority of resolutions related to healthiness after a year of comfort eating, nesting and nowhere to go. Some even cited ‘apocalyptic doom and gloom’! 2020 played havoc with our health, wellness and emotions and to top it all off, the pandemic pounds piled on. The ‘Covid stone’ or ‘Covid curves’ is top of the ‘to lose’ list for 2021. Overall, despite a most unusual and difficult year, the Irish optimism and jovial nature is still in abundance with 74% feeling positive. Seems like a resounding good riddance to 2020 hindsight!
As the clock struck midnight on New Year’s Eve, 85% of Irish people surveyed said they would make new year’s resolutions, however after a month or less, two thirds (64%) of them may be broken. Just under a quarter of them (24%) won’t even see out the week! The study reveals Ireland is a nation brimming with good intentions but lacking in willpower. The over-riding hope for Ireland in 2021 is to get back to normal and be rid of Covid-19 for good.
Ireland’s number one resolution is to lose weight (59%), and a further 45% of us claim we’ll take more exercise and 50% of us will try to eat more healthily. Non material things seem to be more important now as 32% want to make more ‘me’ time and 30% want to have a healthier mindset/attitude. Only 17% of us vow to get out of debt and spend less which might indicate that health is wealth for 2021 and only 13% vow to spend more time with friends and family. Did we all see quite enough of each other during 2020? Marriage and procreation seemed least important to all surveyed with just 3% resolving to tie the knot! But at least we have good intentions as 17% of us resolve to learn a new hobby and 25% of us are intent on drinking less alcohol – this figure is quite high which indicated that we may have been comfort drinking as well as comfort eating during 2020.
74% of respondents gained weight during 2020 and, of those, 47% gained more than a half stone. 5% were ‘afraid to look’ but 24% of respondents actually lost weight during 2020. When asked what were the underlying reasons for weight gain or loss, the overwhelming response was comfort eating at 44% followed by 32% of respondents who cited that they were more sedentary with less movement and 26% indicated that they had nowhere to go in 2020 so not much motivation to look well. 19% blamed comfortable clothing so they didn’t notice the weight creeping up. 14% got fitter and exercised more, 2% found a new passion for yoga and dawn swims even featured, albeit just under 2%, but the vast majority of respondents moved less and ate more. Only 4% felt apocalyptic doom and gloom but Covid-19 trepidation definitely featured with 18% of respondents citing fear and anxiety about Covid-19 as a reason for their weight gain.
When asked if they have ever been successful at even keeping one resolution all year, 14% of people confirmed that no, they always forget about them and 53% said they start with the best of intentions but they never last but 21% stated that they do actually complete one resolution every year. We seem to care what others think because 46% of those surveyed said that telling people impacts on whether they keep resolutions or not.
It seems us Irish are increasingly creative when it comes to reasons why we can’t keep our promises. 14% of us admitted to giving up on New Year resolutions because ‘the couch is too comfy’ and a further 20% of those surveyed decide that when all is said and done …‘Sure I’m grand as I am’. Only 6% said its because they don’t have enough money, 19% said they just don’t have the time but the most common excuse all round was that we simply don’t have the Motivation (44%) and 28% of respondents cited the reason they give up on resolutions is because of the story they tell themselves, excuses and irrational thoughts.