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Americans' New Year Resolutions Accentuate Health And Wealth For 2024

The optimistic spirit of 2024 New Year Resolutions.

It is believed that New Year’s resolutions date back to the 17th century. According to Merriam-Webster, "A 1671 entry from the diaries of Anne Halkett, a writer, and member of the Scottish gentry, contains a number of pledges, typically taken from biblical verses such as "I will not offend any." Halkett titled this page "Resolutions" and wrote them on January 2nd, which would possibly indicate that the practice was in use at the time, even if people did not refer to it as a New Year's resolution."

Whatever the origins, people have been making pledges and promises to turn over a new year and be a better version of themselves starting in January. As many make the most of the last few days of the year to indulge and make merry, the TIPP Poll asked close to 1500 Americans, "Do you plan to make any New Year resolutions for 2024?" Surprisingly, less than half, 45%, answered in the affirmative. A majority, 55%, were not planning on making resolutions for the coming year.

Though these annual pledges have lost their charm for some, many still consider New Year's goals motivational and a symbolic opportunity to bring about positive change. Almost half the women, 48%, said they would make New Year resolutions, and 42% of the men who participated in the survey agreed.

It cannot be denied that making resolutions for the coming year bears a note of optimism and hope. It reflects the intent to improve and is buoyed by the cheerful spirit of the holidays. According to the survey, the youth are the most optimistic lot, with 70% resolving to make changes in the coming year. Among the young adults aged 25–44, 59% are setting goals to improve. Only 39% of those in the 45-64 age category and 18% of seniors are thinking of making resolutions before the year ends.

The TIPP Poll asked, "Below are some new resolutions people make. Which ones do you plan to pursue?" The survey found that a healthy lifestyle and finances are the top picks for most Americans. About a quarter want to spend less time on social media, and close to a fifth want to quit smoking.

The respondents' top picks by age show where priorities lie and what remains the main focus. Here are the top resolutions by age group among those making resolutions.

Age 18 to 24

  • 63% Eat healthy
  • 63% Exercise regularly
  • 59% Improve your finances
  • 48% Lose weight
  • 45% Learn a new skill or hobby

 Age 25 to 44

  • 58% Improve your finances
  • 56% Eat healthy
  • 55% Exercise regularly
  • 47% Spend more time with family
  • 38% Lose weight

Age 45 to 64

  • 57% Eat healthy
  • 51% Improve your finances
  • 47% Exercise regularly
  • 39% Lose weight
  • 33% Spend more time with family

Age 65+

  • 63% Exercise regularly
  • 54% Eat healthy
  • 47% Lose weight
  • 46% Improve your finances
  • 34% Reduce your credit card debt

New Year resolutions have kept pace as with everything else. A healthy lifestyle is viewed as a priority, and so is financial discipline. The trend has also shifted to setting realistic and achievable goals. Folks know that personal improvement is a continuous process that is not limited to the beginning of the year. As a year draws to a close and a new one dawns, there is time to reflect and set intentions for the New Year. Here's wishing that the coming year will be happier, healthier, prosperous, and more peaceful than the one gone by.

Editor's note: We are taking a few days off to recharge and will return on January 3, 2024. Hope the new year brings you good health and happiness!