I would consider the battlefield to be an extraordinary circumstance.
I'd smoke at the very least if I was being fired at all day.
I don't smoke unless I'm on fire. That happened once when I wasn't careful lighting some brush on fire...
Control is a big thing with me. I want to be in control at all times. Don't drink because of the dis-inhibition it elicits (been there, done that, been an ass!). Gave up chocolate because of it's control over me (baking chocolate chip cookies...some for the dough, equal amount in my face!).
I just don't like "having to have" something or I'll get twitchy, grumpy, sick etc etc. It's all about control for me.
A big part of it is the rituals you build around it. You've all read books like The Believing Brain, or at least you've read the summary on Amazon, so you understand how humans tend to find or create patterns and then become attached to them in one way or another.
One of the hardest parts of quitting is disentangling yourself from the daily routines and rituals that you built up around having a cigarette. Realizing that you enjoy the rituals more than the cigarette does help initiate the quitting process, but it also hinders it as you try to figure out how you can keep the rituals without the cigarette, or at least adapt them. For example, a cigarette was the catalyst for the nightly unwind on the back porch with my wife before bed; we introduced an herbal tea into the ritual, so the cigarette could be phased out. Sort of an Indiana Jones switcharoo
Although my mother was a pack-a-day smoker (until she quit cold-turkey at age 40), I was never tempted to take it up as a teen. Probably because everyone else was, and damned if I was going to follow the crowd!
Later, when I discovered girls, smoking became the deal-breaker. Fortunately, the Superwife has never smoked, and neither have our two daughters.
True story - our daughters are about four years apart. When the oldest was seven (and here sister almost four), they had a "Health Studies" class in the elementary school, where they were taught about the effects of smoking on the body. During the discussion at dinner, I dropped a remark to the effect that I couldn't abide a woman who smokes. The oldest asked "Well, what if Mommy had smoked when you met her?"
I replied "We wouldn't have got past the Hi-how-are-you stage".
Her little sister stopped eating, put down her fork, and, giving her mother a big hug, said "Thank you for not smoking, 'cause if you did, I don't think I'd be here."
Once you start and you're hooked, "aaahhh!!! there's nothing like a fag" as we say comically in the UK.
Praise the Lord I gave up 4 years ago. Totally useless habit that just feeds itself and makes you ill, stinky and poor. I don't miss the horrible things at all. That said, I'll always be biologically a smoker and I do have the occasional relapse which strangely I just love.
There is none. People start without thinking about it and are often too weak to quit.
I would agree.
Well it is Natural Selection in action. Too bad it doesn't work faster.
I like many others here agree with the reasons behind smoking, (I've only been smoking for 4 years) for me it is primarily a stress reliever. I started just out of HighSchool as a "cool social thing" and then equated that to stress releife.
I have cut back considerably but haven't found a good enough reason for myself to quit. I am also an advocate for moderation, as anything is potentially addictive i.e, food, porn, excorsise, etc. I hold the the philosophy that if you enjoy something why deprive youreself of that?
Are you asking what is appealing about smoking to those who smoke? Or to those who observe the smoker? To understand both you need to look deeply into social psychology, which is what I do, and I also wish I had more to say on the subject. One can assert that social expectations or peer pressure can be a catalyst for the habit in some cases, but unfortunately there are many more factors to consider. According to The Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology Vol. 56, orientation towards smoking is not determined entirely by social milieu – and giving it up depends on the usefulness of the habit to his/her personal needs. There have also been some studies on context-dependent memory and how information based phenomena can hinder one’s efforts to break a habit. Of course, and without a doubt you need to consider chemical dependencies resulting from continual exposure. I think the reasons for such habits have more to do with the individual and the circumstances surrounding them. Now, why do some people think those who smoke are cool? I don’t really know but it might warrant taking the topic back to my lab and getting the team to look at it.