Gen Z ranks improving mental health as top New Year’s resolution

Story at a glance

  • A new poll from Forbes Health found that half of people aged 18 to 25 plan on taking up improving their mental health as a New Year’s resolution.

  • The poll findings mark a shift in attitudes toward mental health.

  • Almost half of Millennial poll respondents said they will also take steps to address their mental health next year.

Generation Z is shifting away from traditional New Year’s resolutions like hitting the gym more or eating better and pledging to improve another aspect of their wellness: their mental health.

A new Forbes Health poll of 1,0005 adults found that 50 percent of people between the ages of 18 and 25 have a New Year’s resolution to work towards improving their mental health.

A sizeable portion of Millennials also plan to forgo traditional New Year’s resolutions like exercising more or eating better. According to the poll, 49 percent of respondents between the ages of 26 and 41 cited a New Year’s resolution to take care of their mental health.

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The poll findings published this week also show that 45 percent of all respondents, regardless of age, named improving their mental health as one of their top New Year’s resolutions for 2023.

Meanwhile, 39 percent of people said that “improved fitness” was their top resolution. Another 37 percent said losing weight was going to be their main focus next year and 33 percent pledged to improve their diet starting in January.

Rates of anxiety and depression have surged in the United States since the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020 especially among teenagers and younger adults.

A 2021 study from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that about 40 percent of teens 18 years old or younger reported experiencing at least one negative mental health symptom.

The study also found that a quarter of young adults, between the ages of 18 and 24, seriously considered suicide at least once during the 30 days prior to being surveyed.

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