Regardless of whether you believe in the New Year’s resolution, something can be said for the subconscious impact of its widespread promotion: The emphasis on the supposed requirement (i.e., societal pressure) to change or better yourself in the new year makes you reflect on your experiences from the year prior. Your friends’ Facebook lists of their Top 10 Albums of 2017 and their aesthetic Instagram posts of the Best Books Read in 2017 are a testament to that.

My team and I asked over 80 of our closest friends to take a quick four-question survey about their experiences with, thoughts on and any potential plans to make, break and/or keep the elusive New Year’s resolution. Not that this will surprise anyone, but the variety of responses was prodigious. From the point of view of this so-called “millennial,” the most shocking thing to me about these results is that no one wrote “#NewYearNewMe.” (Having just started this job one year ago, this was the heading of the first goal on my professional development plan.) Someone did, however, write “#goals.” Hope restored.

Peruse the data below (thank you to the awesome and talented Miriam Anzovin for making it look compelling!), and if you’re so inclined and feeling daring, share your thoughts in the comments.

What have your experiences with New Year’s resolutions been?

Resolutions: Question 1

New Year’s resolutions are…

Resolutions: Question 2

“Goals to work on within the coming year. They help keep us grounded and on track for our future endeavors.”

“Like a present from grandma—it’s the thought that counts.”

“A social obligation.”

“Foolishness. Promises you make to yourself that you rarely keep. If you need proof, go to any gym on Jan. 2 and count the people. Go at the same time on Feb. 2 and do the same thing.”


“Easy to come up with, difficult to apply to life.”

“A great way to set an intention for the year.”

“Pointless. Why are we obsessed with waiting until a new year to be better when we could just be better now?”


Will you make one for 2018?

Resolutions: Question 3

What will it be?

Resolutions: Question 4

Health kick

“Continue to eat healthy, work out and drink good beer.”

“Go to martial arts class! DO IT.”


“I make adjustments in my behavior all the time; the new year doesn’t mean that much to me in terms of changing myself.”

“That’s what Rosh Hashanah is for.”

Find my groove

“Gain more control over my daily routine.”


Zen living


“Less screen time, more book time.”

Build my empire

“Be more creative. Find where home is. Make my time worth it.”

“Finally stand up for myself.”


“Dedicate myself more to Judaism.”

“Recover from 2017.”

Get that money

“Put more money into savings.”

“Pay attention to where my money goes.”

People who matter

“Get married.”

“Take time to see all my friends, not just the two who live closest.”


“Earn a raise by the end of the year.”

“Purchase a home. Make progress on my side business.”

Live wild and free

“Travel to at least three new countries and take at least three trips to the West Coast.”

“Be more daring.”

Give back

“Limit the use of disposable bags, straws, cups, plates, etc.”

“Do everything I can to get Democrats elected to stop the madness.”