Quit smoking but avoid the pot holes!


Everywhere we turn we are faced with signs asking us to Quit Smoking.  There is a national campaign  to provide smokers with all the evidence to persuade them that smoking is bad for their health and to cease in their own best interests and we have  large scale offerings of how to do that.  We can do it for free. We can pay for the “Rolls Royce” of all cures. We can do it with patches. We can do it with hypnotherapy. We can do it with little puffers that dupe us into thinking it is a “real” cigarette – in fact there is a flavour  to suit all of us to give up if we want to. We are throwing thousands/millions of pounds at educating ourselves that this habit is now bad for us, despite it being around and publically acceptable for many many years.  Someone high up has obviously done the thinking and realised how much it is costing in all sorts of terms to keep the smoking culture alive despite the previous high returns from tobacco companies.  So I think, even though it is a little late, we should give them some credit.

There is therefore some pretty compelling reasons for giving up smoking and many have, to their credit, seen the light and making the arduous journey to become a non-smoker.   However the facts are that you can still work whilst being a heavy smoker (providing you don’t smoke at work unless it is in the shed !) and it is unlikely that you will ever loose your job because of it.  In fact, in general whilst you might be considered a fool for endangering your health you probably won’t loose your job; your family; your other relationships; your home;  and your confidence.    You probably won’t get sexually assaulted as a direct result of smoking,  turn into a violent person and end your liberty or wake up in a strange place with complete amnesia.    You probably also won’t turn to stealing to pay for your smoking habit and become socially isolated.  In fact as a smoker you can live life in the mainsteam and apart from being banished to a shed along with many others where there is parallel social scene for like minded “smokers” you  can in fact function quite “normally” .

So how come, as a nation who has an even bigger problem with alcohol (and drugs but that is another post for another time) and despite  a few vague messages to be “drink aware” in public places we seem in complete denial about the state we are all getting ourselves into.  We can all pretend that it is ok but, just like smoking but even more crucial in terms of lives lost, we are building ourselves up for an even larger crisis.  If trying to reverse the habit of smoking is as hard to resolve as it is – just think what we have in store when more people wake up and find themselves totally dependent upon alcohol and try to reverse that!   I are not talking about not having fun. I am not even talking necessarily about not drinking alcohol. I am just pointing out that if drinking is becoming problematic (and we all know deep inside if it is) then do something about it – step it back – and if you can’t do so easily get some help.

I would like to think that if we knew that a road was full of big holes into which we can fall and seriously hurt ourselves, we would want to warn everyone coming along the road about them in case they hurt themselves.   That’s my mission and maybe that could also be yours!




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