In fact, in January – the start of a New Year, that’s seen as an opportunity to broaden horizons – the average adult says “no” to something they actually want to do every 10 days.
But this fear of saying yes means 35 percent think they have missed out on making new friends, while 33 percent have avoided asking someone on a date.
And 32 percent believe it has held them back from trying a new hobby.
The research was commissioned by Crodino, to mark the launch of its campaign to encourage people to let go of saying no, by offering complimentary experiences this month – including cookery classes, bouquet making, and karaoke.
The non-alcoholic aperitivo has also teamed up with psychologist Emma Kenny, who spoke about what holds Brits back, and why conquering the “fear of saying yes” will have a positive impact.
She said: “FOSY is a common phenomenon, linked to the emotions we experience when faced with opportunities that push us outside our comfort zone.
“When there’s a chance we might be judged or we have pre-conceived ideas that we’re not good at something, our instinctive, knee-jerk reaction is to say “no”.
“The research tells us that, in January, it’s even more common to say no to something, even if it’s something we want to do.
“The benefits of doing more of the things we wish we could, but are afraid to say “yes” to, are vast.
“When we take on new experiences, we grow in courage and develop personal resilience which increases our confidence and self-esteem, making life feel altogether more rewarding.”
However, the research also found Brits want to use 2023 to put themselves out there more – as three in five want to beat the January blues and say “yes” more.
To do so, 34 percent will accept invitations to more social gatherings, and 23 percent want to tuck into delicacies they haven’t tried before.
More than a fifth (21 percent) also want to upskill their cooking ability over the course of the next 12 months.
After several years of restrictions, 36 percent simply want their life to be busier and with more variety.
And 43 percent feel having the ability to say “yes” to more will bring a sense of fulfilment.
Consequently, the research, conducted via OnePoll, found 40 percent hope it will make them a more positive person.
Loris Contro, Campari Group UK Italian Icons brand ambassador, said: “We understand that taking the initial leap of faith and saying “yes” to something new can be daunting at first – but the outcome can be so rewarding.
“That’s why we want to help people overcome their fear of saying yes, and start the year as we mean to go on by doing the things we want to do.
“With millions taking part in Dry January, it shouldn’t prevent anyone from going out, or missing out on their favourite flavours.”
Following the findings, Crodino has partnered with various hospitality venues across London – including Eataly, Nest, and Salt Yard Borough – and people can apply here for a free pass to an experience until January 17th.