If you type in "reasons to quit smoking" into Google's search bar, you'll be greeted by over 1-million results.
Every single one of them states that the page being shown to you will explain the best reasons for quitting.
But if you've clicked on any of them, you'll quickly find that most contain statements or facts on smoking and its effects on health. You've most likely seen them already; decreased risk of heart disease, decreased risk of stroke, decreased risk of lung disease etc.
Those are reasons to consider quitting or stepping away from smoking. We can't deny that. However, health statements (no matter how true) aren't the reasons why people finally quit. If that was true, people would have given up alcohol, stopped self-medicating and would have begun a consistent workout routine a long time ago!
After scanning what seemed like hundreds of forums, YouTube videos and ebooks - it is evident that the reasons people step away from smoking, come down to something far deeper.
Here are the three most frequent, or most popular reasons that came up when seeking people's motivation to stop smoking.
"I stopped smoking because I became pregnant"
If there's one very important reason to step away from smoking, it's making sure you don't harm your new child. When many women learn they're pregnant, they may feel a sudden urgency to improve their health. Smoking is usually the first thing on the list to go.
"I quit because my parents died from smoking"
It's no secret that today's generations are seeing the worst instances of premature death in the previous generation - due mainly to diseases that cigarette toxins can cause or exacerbate.
Knowing your parents or grandparents died from the same habit that you're currently partaking in, can give you a very harsh glimpse into your own future. That's enough to put most people off!
"I quit because I don't want my kids to copy me"
Surprisingly, one of the most common reasons that occurred was because they didn't want their kids going down the same route.
Some mentioned being unable to compete in sports when they were teens because they started smoking early. Others talked about how they started smoking because they saw their parents smoking, and they don't want that influence for their children.
Those were the three most popular reasons given on public platforms - at least, the ones we looked at.
You'll notice there is a common trend.
Each reason is filled with human experience and compassion. This is why simply stating facts to smokers will not get them to quit.
If you want somebody to step away from the habit, they need to be able to connect "not-smoking" with something on a much deeper level.
This is why people have to want to quit before they actually do.
Maybe the best thing you can do to influence them, is to help remind them how wonderful it is to watch children or grandchildren grow up. Or maybe how amazing it is to spend time with your family and be able to go hiking or play sports with them.
Just talk about the deeper things that smoking can effect - instead of simply making remarks about possible health concerns.