Do not Share This
By Simonbook - 12 Dec 2015 in
Humans are built for anarchy, if only by virtue of the fact that cogito, ergo, sum. It’s cool to have a spine and a strong
sense of self, but this frequently visible tendency to rage against the machine is often counter-productive - to you, that
is - if what you’re doing in the first place is actually kind of stupid. Like smoking, for instance.
New research from the combined forces of Oxford, Yale, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has just been
published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology, and indicates we are indeed all goddamn badasses who play by our
own sexy rules - but maybe not because we want to.
The research shows that no smoking signs have an "ironic effect" on smokers in that they force them to think about
cigarettes and, thus, make them want to light up: "In a series of experiments, the researchers showed that participants
who had earlier been shown no smoking signs were more drawn to smoking-related images such as ashtrays and
When I say 'don't think of a pink elephant,' I've just put the thought of a pink elephant in your head,. No
smoking signs in particular are everywhere. If you're a smoker walking down a street you're likely to pass five or six of
these signs in windows or on doors. If you have a chronically positive attitude to smoking this could boost your craving.
There hasn't been a followup study yet, but he theorizes that this ironic effect might apply to a lot of public campaigns
designed to discourage actions: Don't do drugs, don't drink and drive, etc.
Sounds like you've got yet another reason to be positive. If you want people to smoke in your place of business less,
don't remind them that their habit isn't welcome.