In response to both the stresses and achievements of contemporary life, people in the UK decide to “treat themselves” up to three times a week, according to a poll.

Feeling sad, finishing a work project and getting stuck in traffic are among the main reasons people opt for a “pick-me-up”, the survey of 2,000 adults suggested.

The three most popular choices were food-related, with buying cake or chocolate, a takeaway, or going for dinner making up the most favoured options, followed by having a glass of wine or beer.

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One fifth reported rewarding themselves because they “worked really hard”, while others celebrated being able to stick to a budget for a length of time, following a diet for longer than a week, sunny weather and passing an exam.

Three quarters of respondents to the poll by Love Fresh Cherries felt treating themselves every now and again was important to their overall wellbeing. 

Most perform such an act of self-care between two and three times a week although 15 per cent said five times a week or more. One in 10 said they never allow themselves anything special

The poll also suggested that more than half of women would like to treat themselves more regularly, but 50 per cent feel bad at least some of the time when they do.

The majority of women prefer regular inexpensive things, with three quarters saying they would rather buy chocolate as a treat than a car or a holiday.

In contrast, half of the men surveyed said they wouldn’t let money stop them from buying something expensive. One in 50 even said they’d purchase a new car.

The majority said that they would treat their friends or family without any cause other than to show affection. 

SWNS

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