3rd January 2018

 Irish vs. the British: who are better at keeping New Year's Resolutions?

It's a good time for many of us to start afresh and think about what we would like to achieve in the new year. Unfortunately, the very idea of making a New Year's Resolution could bring back depressing memories, as many of us struggle to meet aims that we set for ourselves. Still, how do we fare compared to our British friends?

Will you make your own New Year's Resolution for 2018?

It's possible that you already regularly draw up new goals for yourself throughout each year and so don't see the need to make any just because 1 January will soon be popping up on your phone's calendar app. Indeed, our infographic reveals that, while 41% of people typically make New Year's Resolutions, another 17% of us do so infrequently, while the largest chunk - 42% - of people forgo making any New Year's Resolutions whatsoever. 

What's deterring so many people? To be fair, it's probably faltering success rates. Apparently, of people who have made New Year's Resolutions in the past, only just under half - 48% - actually went on to meet them. That's slightly ahead of the failure rate of 47%, while 5% of people - with presumably obscure goals - were unsure whether or not their resolutions were achieved. 

Success rates did seem to fluctuate with age. While 52% of 18-24-year-olds and 54% of 25-34-year-olds achieved their resolutions, the rate fell to 50% for their 35-44-year-old cohorts and sharply declined further for people in the 45-54, 55-64 and 65+ age brackets. The records of success in those instances were - respectively - 43%, 45% and 44%. 

We have a high failure rate... but also staying power

Still, you might expect us to outperform Brits in the resolution-achieving stakes. After all, we have the "luck of the Irish" on our side. However, we can only assume that many of us still haven't been kissing the Blarney Stone often enough...

While 46% of us did - metaphorically-speaking - find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, another 49% had to, it could be said, make do with chocolate coins. That compares to 54% of Scotland residents who thrived and 47% of English and Welsh people who did so. Nonetheless, the same percentage of people fell short in England, while Wales' failure record was 48%.

We did, at least, usually take longer to quit than those on the other side of the Irish Sea. While 52% of us kept pursuing our resolutions for a year, 48% of people made it that far in England and Scotland and 42% of Wales residents resisted throwing in the towel before a year had passed.