Have You Already Broken Your New Year's Resolution? You're Not Alone, Says Study
Just in case you were curious about whether that study that said New Year's resolution failure is completely normal, guess what? It is, according to data recently gathered by deal finder site CouponCodesPro: Two-fifths of American adults have already broken their New Year's resolutions this year, and we're only two and a half weeks into 2015. If you're one of them, don't feel bad. It's OK. We can all be mediocre together.
You'll recall that the study conducted by the University of Scranton we read about just a few weeks ago found that only eight percent of those who make New Year's resolutions actually succeed in achieving them. 49 percent experience "infrequent success," while 24 percent fail completely each year. What CouponCodesPro found seems to support the U of Scranton study; the site surveyed 3,120 adults aged 18 and over in the U.S. and discovered that, of the 64 percent who had made resolutions this year, 41 percent said that they'd already broken them. For the curious, the top five most popular resolutions as identified by CouponCodesPro were: Sticking to a diet (43 percent); quitting smoking (31 percent) saving more money (25 percent); going to the gym (24 percent); and abstaining from boozing during January (18 percent).
What I find more interesting than the fact that people have already broken their resolutions, though, are the reasons they gave for breaking them: 21 percent said that they bowed to "peer pressure," while 54 percent said, "The temptation was too great." Maybe this is just me, but I think the reasons we give for our failures say a lot about who we are as people; as such, it's nice to know that over half pretty much took responsibility for breaking their resolutions (I interpret "The temptation was too great" to mean, "There was temptation; I failed because my willpower just wasn't strong enough). Not going to lie, though: I feel a liiiiiiiiittle judge-y about the 21 percent who blamed peer pressure. "Well, I didn't want to break it, but I couldn't very well not have a drink with my friends on Friday night, right?" is kind of a feeble excuse, no? I mean, it's fine if you broke your resolution; no one is perfect. Just own up to the fact that you broke it. No one else can break your resolution for you.
I think it's also worth noting, by the way, that the first question all respondents were asked — even before all the stuff about New Year's resolutions — was, "Did you look forward to the end of 2014 and the start of 2015?" A whopping 83 percent said yes; furthermore, when asked to elaborate on why they answered in the affirmative, the most common reasons given were, "It had been a bad year/needed a new one" (46 percent) and that they were looking for a "fresh start" (28 percent). These reasons aren't exactly surprising; 2014 was a tough year, both for a whole lot of people and because of a whole lot of reasons. It's probably because of how rough the year was that I get a kick out of the "needed a new one" response — it's like most of us are going, "This year is broken! We need to go to the Year Store and return it! Do you do exchanges? Store credit will be fine, thanks."
But all is not lost for those who have already broken their resolutions: 29 percent of those who said they had also said that they were going to attempt them again soon. For anyone in that particular boat, just remember: It takes approximately 66 days for new habits to stick, so if you can keep yourself honest for just three months, your chances of succeeding skyrocket. Three months isn't so bad, right? Break it down into three 22-day stages and it becomes even more manageable; what's more, as Andrew Benkovic wrote over at HuffPo, your resolution can begin at any time — not just in January. Allow me to be your own personal cheerleader: You can do it! I believe in you! Rah rah rah!