More Quit-Smoking Tips
Continuing our look at quit-smoking ‘tips’ we can find many other websites where these words appear. For example: 13 Best Quit-Smoking Tips Ever With Pictures, 10 Scientific Quit-Smoking Tips, and Top Ten Tips on How to Stop Smoking. The last-mentioned misleadingly uses this heading to draw people into the site but no tips as such are given.
The idea that there are useful tips to quit smoking in the same way you might find tips for the Epsom Derby or investing in the stock-market, trivialises this serious problem and may mislead would-be quitters into thinking it’s just a matter of finding the right sort of hints or suggestions.
What are these tips anyway?
They’re all of a piece and disappointing. If we take, for example, ‘10 Scientific Quit-Smoking Tips’ we find nicotine replacement therapy, set a quit-date, write down when you smoke, counselling, enlist your social network, and so on. These ideas merely parrot the steps recommended by orthodox stop-smoking clinics or standard advice.
Furthermore, the very concept of tips for quitting smoking is odd, not to say absurd. People don’t smoke because of a lack of tips on how to stop. And it’s almost an insult to smokers to imply that offering a few tips – whether they’re called Top Ten, Best Ever, Scientific or similar eye-catching names – is going to make much difference.
As I have said before, this approach shows an almost total lack of understanding about why smokers smoke and why many find it so hard to quit – and why many don’t even want to quit.
Why do we have a smoking problem?
The blame for the huge death toll from smoking cannot of course be put on those offering help in quitting, however ineffective this might be. We have to look at the whole picture of why so many people are in the unfortunate situation of being the target for advice and help in stopping something they should never have started in the first place.
Smoking is not a habit that creeps up on you, such as spending six hours a day on Facebook. People may indeed need guidance on how to avoid wasting time to this extent looking at their phones.
Smoking is different: it’s legalised drug addiction.
Should smoking, therefore, be made illegal? I think it should.
But in the meantime, for smokers desirous of quitting, facing the fact that they are in the grip of nicotine addiction is cause for hope rather than despair. This is because, if you understand how the addiction keeps you smoking, it actually points the way to escaping from it. This is what I help smokers discover in my one-on-one quit smoking sessions.
Text © Gabriel Symonds
Picture: V0019250 A smoker with huge head exhales cigar smoke which forms the words ‘Try One’. Credit: Wellcome Library, London. Wellcome Images. firstname.lastname@example.org http://wellcomeimages.org