Third of Brits likely to give up New Year's resolution today

Steel yourself if you are desperately trying to keep a New Year's resolution - new research reveals more than one in three people are likely to break their pledge today.

And there will be further failure in the days ahead, with weak-willed Brits set to give up their good intentions even before Quitters Day - traditionally the second Friday of January, which falls on unlucky Friday 13 this year.

Only a third (38 per cent) of the most determined people will stay on track until the end of the month, based on last year's performance, and the numbers in 2023 might well be less than that.

The new survey of 2,000 U.K. adults conducted by Duolingo, the world's number one language app, pinpointed January 10 as peak failure day in 2022, when 32 per cent of people broke their resolutions, and found 61 per cent of Brits think keeping their pledges will be even harder this year.

And the temptation to quit could be strongest if you are attempting Veganuary, as "giving up meat" was voted a difficult resolution to stick to by 36 per cent of people, closely followed by "cutting phone screen time by a tenth" (34 per cent) and "going to the gym at least twice a week" (33 per cent).

"Using TikTok for just 10 minutes a day" came in fourth, with 25 per cent reckoning that would be a tricky challenge to meet, while 22 per cent think "calling friends or family at least once a week" would be hard.

But the problem might not all be down to a lack of willpower, according to Duolingo's senior learning scientist, Dr Cindy Blanco.

"The trouble with goal setting in January is that we typically choose resolutions that are too ambitious and too difficult to keep," she said. "A more effective approach is to break new habits down into mini-goals: think of personally meaningful goals that you can achieve in a few weeks or months, and then repeat that process all year.

"This is a great way to build in a 'reward' element to keep you engaged, see your progress more easily, and build connections between your study habits and the reward."

And despite our habit of dropping New Year's resolutions early, plenty of Brits do still feel they are worth making.

Some 70 per cent of people have set one this year, according to the study, and 84 per cent report that having personal goals helps them feel grounded when there's so much doom and gloom in the news.

Meanwhile, a whopping 88 per cent say New Year goal setting makes them feel accountable to their future self.

But first, we need to get through today and Quitters Day.

To help new learners get past the sticking point, Duolingo is providing you with an incentive. To be in with a chance of winning the infamous Duo the owl plushie, along with loads of other goodies, just head to the @DuolingoUK Twitter and state your 2023 motivation for learning, before the end of January.

The five most difficult resolutions to keep:

1. Giving up meat

2. Reducing phone screen time by 10 per cent

3. Going to the gym at least twice a week

4. Using TikTok for just 10 minutes a day

5. Calling family or friends at least once a week