Ten most popular New Year's resolutions

Ten most popular New Year's resolutions

Ikon Images

Welcome, 2023! There's nothing quite like the transition into a new year to help us focus on our goals. And, as things finally start to feel a bit more normal again, this year seems to hold extra promise. We've had a lot of time to reflect during the changes and challenges of the past few years so, while diet and exercise remain important, mental health, financial wellbeing and better prioritising our time will be a top priority for many of us.

Below, we take a look at some of the top New Year's resolutions together with some of our favourite stock art from Ikon's collection to go alongside. Picture buyers and art desks will find eye-catching images to sit alongside your editorial content on resolutions this New Year.

Even if resolutions aren't your thing, our board of 50 stunning stock illustrations is sure to brighten up your dreary January.

New Year's resolution: Eat better

1Eat better

While treats definitely have their place, most of us tend to overindulge during December, making January a great time to focus on eating better. What makes for a better diet will be different for everyone, but most will look to up their fruit and veg intake and watch portion sizes. Weight loss is a significant motivator but is not the only goal here: having more energy, eating more sustainably, or trying out new foods are other great reasons to take a look at your diet this January.

New Year's resolution: Get fit

2Get fit

If the only exercise you got in December was dancing at the office Christmas party, you’re not alone. Like diet, above, there is no one-size-fits-all approach building - and sticking with - a new fitness routine. Fortunately, we have more choices than ever before so whether you’re a gym bunny, a devout yogi or keen hiker, the benefits for our physical health, mental health, energy, strength and flexibility make moving more well worthwhile.

New Year's resolution: Drink less

3Drink less

One glass of bubbles too many? We all know that alcohol isn’t great for our health but between holiday gatherings and New Year’s parties, it’s easy to get carried away with the festivities. Challenges such as Dry January look to combat this feeling, while low or no alcohol beer, spirits and even wine offer another alternative to that evening tipple.

New Year's resolution: Connect more

4Connect more

If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s the importance of the people around us. Now we’re able to gather more freely, you might decide to prioritise spending more time with those you care about this year, organising outings and get-togethers with family and friends. Or cast your net wider and create new, rewarding connections by giving back to your community through volunteering - a win-win all around.

New Year's resolution: Find headspace

5Find headspace

Our thoughts have just as much impact on our wellbeing as diet and exercise (and often go hand in hand) so resolve to look after your mental health this year. Regular practices such as mindfulness and meditation top the list of ways to reduce stress and tune into our thoughts and feelings. Or why not give a diary a go? Journaling helps get your thoughts and worries off your mind and down onto the page, helping you to feel a bit lighter.

New Year's resolution: Spend less

6Spend less

Soaring energy prices, ongoing pay negotiations and lagging Christmas sales: the cost of living crisis has hit and is set to continue well into 2023. So it’s no surprise that we’re all looking for ways to get to grips with our personal finances and save money by cutting bills and planning for the future.

New Year's resolution: Unplug


While the idea of completely cutting ourselves off from anything digital is an impossibility for most, there are still a number of ways to unplug and improve our relationship with technology. A digital detox doesn't need to be cold turkey: simple yet effective steps include ensuring you don’t use your phone an hour before bed or limiting time spent on social media. Or intentionally build breaks into your day to step away from the computer, leave your phone on the side and enjoy a screen-free activity.

New Year's resolution: Get smart

8Get smart

Now that you’ve taken a break from tech, why not use that time to learn something new? Whether you gain a new skill, take up a new hobby, join a club, or simply read more, focussing on the life of the mind is a smart move this January.

New Year's resolution: Enhance your career

9Enhance your career

Where do you see yourself in five years? What about this year? If you don’t have an answer to that question, better dust off that CV: the New Year is a great time to set goals in your professional life. Upskilling, going for a promotion, moving organisation, or even retraining in another industry can help keep things fresh and might increase your earning power, too.

New Year's resolution: Quit smoking

10Quit smoking

Smoking rates may be at an all-time low (less than 15% of adults in both the US and the UK) but those who do still usually want to quit. Given smoking’s well-known impact on both your health and your wallet, it’s easy to see why this remains a popular resolution.

Whatever your goals this New Year, let Ikon’s library of hand-picked images inspire both you and your readers. See our board of 50 evocative illustrations to get started.

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