The 4 Smoking Triggers That Keep You Hooked

blog triggers primary 846x564 The 4 Smoking Triggers That Keep You Hooked

Why did you smoke your latest cigarette?

Most people believe that smokers smoke because they can’t help it.

The truth is that there is always a reason why any smoker lights up.

And knowing the reason why you smoke, makes it a whole lot easier to tackle this reason and eventually quit.

Makes sense?

Ok so really now, I want you to take a moment and ask yourself this: “Why did I smoke?”

The answer is probably one of the following:

“I enjoy it.”

“I was stressed.”

“I just finished my meal.”

“I was bored.”

“I wanted to concentrate.”

“I’m used to it; it’s a habit. Something to do with my hands.”

So what are all these reasons?

Why do situations like these make smokers vulnerable?

And is there a way to overcome them so you can quit smoking without feeling deprived?

Ok, let’s begin!

So the reason you light up a cigarette is simple: you have encountered a smoking trigger or else, a cue.

What exactly is a smoking trigger?

The smoking triggers are all the states and situations that make you want to smoke.

Everyone has their individual triggers that are formed based on their lifestyle. But there are triggers that are common to all smokers.

That’s why in this post, I will share with you EVERYTHING you need to know about smoking triggers.

But before we get into that, let’s see..

How Your Smoking Triggers Keep You Hooked

Let’s say you’re driving to work and you’re sipping on your coffee. At that moment, if you aren’t already doing so, you will light up a cigarette.

The 4 Smoking Triggers Or youve been smoking while driving The 4 Smoking Triggers That Keep You HookedYou don’t know why you do this. But you know that if you don’t light up, you will feel that something is missing.


This happens because driving and drinking coffee are 2 smoking triggers. They create an irresistible urge to smoke.

But why?

Listen. These triggers have NO magic power over you. They simply remind you to smoke!

Yes. there is nothing inherent in your coffee that makes you enjoy it better with a cigarette. No.

Why should you know and pay attention to your individual triggers?

You’ve probably smoked while drinking your coffee so many times… that you’ve stopped thinking about why you do it.

The same applies to all of your smoking triggers.

You’ve probably smoked so many times to relax from stress, that you think you can’t relax otherwise.

Or you’ve been smoking while driving for so many years, that you feel you can’t concentrate on the road without holding a cigarette.

As you can see, the only problem here is that you are used to smoking in certain situations. And you are so used to it that you do it automatically! Without thinking about it.

I still remember myself trying to light up a cigarette only to realize that I am already smoking one. I am not proud of this incident but it had happened a few times back when I used to smoke.

I know you probably have a lot going on in your life. But I want to invite you to just be aware of your triggers.

For example, if you catch yourself lighting up a cigarette…. simply ask yourself “Why am I smoking this now?”.

It doesn’t matter what’s your answer. What matters is that you didn’t smoke it unconsciously. By doing this, you actually gain control over your smoking habit.


Because you make your triggers, and therefore your habit, less automatic!

The 4 Types of Smoking Triggers

Try to think which are your strongest triggers..

Screen Shot 2016 01 10 at 4.48.09 PM The 4 Smoking Triggers That Keep You Hooked

smoking triggers

Emotional Triggers

It took me a few years to see this simple pattern:

That all smokers, smoke either to boost a good emotional state or to escape from a bad one. These are the emotional triggers.

Think about it.

When you are drinking your coffee, you smoke to enjoy your coffee even more. —that’s a Boost.

When you are bored or anxious, you smoke to alter that state.—that’s an Escape.

When you feel depressed, you will smoke to feel better. —again, an Escape.

When you are with your friends, your colleagues, your partner, you smoke to connect and enjoy their company. — that’s a Boost.

So think about which emotional states you are trying to escape or boost by smoking.

Some people think that if they use nicotine gums, patches or sprays they can face stress or cope with their emotions.

The problem?

They soon realize that they feel as stressed or bored as before. If you want to feel good without smoking, stop taking these products. They are not the solution. 

The solution?

Discover ways to relax and feel good without a cigarette

….before you quit smoking.

The 4 Smoking Triggers 2 The 4 Smoking Triggers That Keep You HookedLet me explain.

If you had never smoked in your life, you wouldn’t be relying on cigarettes to calm down. And you wouldn’t be more anxious as a person. You would have found different ways to relax when you are stressed – like non-smokers do.

But now, you are just used to relaxing by smoking. That doesn’t mean that you can’t relax in other ways.

You can!

See, finding ways to relax without your smokes BEFORE you actually smoke your last cigarette… does 2 things for you:

◦ It removes the fear of quitting.

◦ It gives you practical ways to stay calm.

As a result, quitting becomes a whole lot easier.

This might sound like common sense. And it is!

The why is the CBQ method the ONLY method that shows you how to relax from your anxiety before you stop smoking?

I believe all methods should work like that. Don’t you think?

Moving on…

Social Triggers

Social triggers can be 2 things.

  1. Social occasions. Social occasions are usually mixed with emotional triggers.

For example, if every time you are at a party, you smoke, then after a while you won’t be able to enjoy a party without smoking.

Because in your mind having fun at a party and smoking are one and the same.

Other social occasions can be:

  • a wedding
  • a promotion
  • your birthday
  • or even playing cards or gambling

But the strongest social triggers are…

The 4 Smoking Triggers 3 The 4 Smoking Triggers That Keep You Hooked     2.  People. If you habitually smoke with your partner, your best friend, your colleagues or your neighbor, then after a while you will find it challenging to maintain a conversation with them without lighting up a cigarette.

You will feel that something is missing.

And when the people we see or love the most, are the people we smoke with…

… then we unconsciously fear that quitting smoking will damage our connection with them-even if that’s far from the truth.

Now I am not saying that you should stop associating with other smokers if you want to quit smoking. Of course, not.

But you must be aware of it.

That’s how you can start disconnecting the people you smoke with from your cravings.

Environmental Triggers

Environmental triggers are all the places you have linked to smoking.

It can be your:

  • home.
  • a friend’s house.
  • your workplace.
  • certain walking distances you make every day- e.g. from the office to the tube.
  • a bar or
  • your car.  Is driving the same without a cigarette?

If you habitually smoke while driving in your car, then after a while just opening the door of your car will be enough to increase your craving for a cigarette.

Context and environment are essential in the formation of habits; from eating junk food to working out.

So eliminating your environmental triggers will have a great impact on your smoking habit.

Double-Habit Triggers

I call this category double-habit triggers because your desire to smoke is being triggered by other habits you have associated with your smoking habit. 

Think about it. Drinking coffee or alcohol, watching tv, eating and even talking on the phone are all habits.

And what’s the problem with double-habit triggers?

Your other habits are paired with smoking.

Screen Shot 2016 01 10 at 4.56.30 PM The 4 Smoking Triggers That Keep You Hooked

Your daily life is the sum of your habits.

Screen Shot 2016 01 10 at 4.56.30 PM The 4 Smoking Triggers That Keep You Hooked

Removing the smoking habit will make the rest of your habits seem incomplete.

That’s why smokers think that life won’t be as fulfilling without cigarettes- you might be in the same place too. I know I have.

Again, you don’t have to deny yourself your other habits.

You just have to be aware of which habits trigger your smoking urges.

What to Do Next to Quit Smoking

Remember to give yourself a reason for every cigarette you smoke. Do this exercise for a week- it will give you get great insights into your smoking habit. I promise.

Next thing, you need to avoid making the 3 mistakes that make quitting seem hard and even impossible!

Learn what are the mistakes and how to avoid them by getting the 3 Irrefutable Tips to Apply Before Your Next Quit Attempt to double your chances of succeeding.

They are FREE, easy and they will make you look forward to quitting smoking.

Click here to download your 3 quit smoking tips and make a fresh start!

About the Author
 The 4 Smoking Triggers That Keep You Hooked

About Nasia Davos

Nasia is an ex-smoker, published author, TEDx speaker, Certified NLP Life Coach and Practitioner with a BSc in Psychology and an MA in Psychoanalysis. She is a Smoking Cessation Practitioner certified by UK’s National Center for Smoking Cessation and Training (NCSCT) and member of the Red Cross. Her extensive research on Smoking Cessation has helped thousands of lifetime smokers quit easily and turn their lives around.

Leave your comment below