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What are the most popular New Year's resolutions in France?

Sam Bradpiece
Sam Bradpiece - [email protected]
What are the most popular New Year's resolutions in France?
Getting regular exercise is among the top New Year's resolutions for French people going into 2024. (Photo by Philippe LOPEZ / AFP)

A poll released this week by IPSOS has revealed what the French would most like to do to improve themselves in 2024.

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Many people around the world go into the New Year with lofty aspirations of self-improvement.

Of course, making a New Year's Resolution and sticking to it are two different things. But the French are remarkably good at sticking to their word. 

According to a new IPSOS poll of a representative sample group of 2000 aged 16 and over, 59 percent of French people managed to succeed in fulfilling their New Year's Resolution for 2023. 

So what are the most popular resolutions for 2024?

Sport

34 percent of French people said they would like to regularly practice a physical activity or a sport in 2024. 

According to the French Health Ministry, less than half of French people aged 15-75 are active enough to gain health benefits. 

Perhaps the 2024 Olympics in Paris will be enough to galvanise the population. 

Friends, family and relaxation

23 percent of French people said they would like to spend more time with friends and family. The same proportion said they would like to carve out time for 'true moments of relaxation'. 

The French already work less hours than the EU average (on average 1490 hours per year versus 1566 hours per year in 2021) and certainly less than the average American (1791 hours) so both these resolutions should be reasonably attainable. 

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Sleep 

22 percent of French people say they would like to have a more regular sleep cycle. 

According to a study released earlier this year, more than a third of French people are not satisfied with their sleep quality and only 35 percent said they 'slept well'. More than 8 out of 10 people said they wake up in the middle of the night and it takes the average French person 40 minutes to fall asleep. 

Experts recommend disconnecting from screens before going to bed and living an active lifestyle as a way to improve sleep quality, which has been decreasing in France since 2015.  

Eat a more balanced diet 

20 percent of those surveyed said they would like to eat a more balanced diet (against 11 percent who said they would like to go 'on a diet'). 

Earlier this year, a separate poll found that the cost of living crisis meant that 55 percent of French people said it was too expensive to eat a balanced diet, with health food often costing more.  

But many people in France seem prepared to forego the wine, cheese and croissants in a bid to get healthier in 2024. 

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Screen time

17 percent of French people said they would like to spend less time in front of screens, although this proportion rose to 22 percent for those under the age of 35. 

According to a report released earlier this year, the average French person spends 32 hours a week looking at screens - a phenomenon explained largely through increased access to smartphones. 

Smoking

9 percent of French people say they would like to stop smoking in 2024, although this declines to just 5 percent of those aged 60 or over. 

The French smoke far more than other Europeans, and certainly more than Brits and Americans. 31.9 percent of French people aged 18-75 said they smoke in 2021 according to official statistics

Alcohol 

7 percent of those surveyed said they would like to limit their alcohol consumption next year. 

Men were more likely to say they would like to limit their drinking (10 percent vs 4 percent of women) - although this can be in part explained by the fact that men tend to consume alcohol more regularly than women in France. 

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