Advertising for Smoke Cessation Products Hypnotize Smokers

Dorothy M. Neddermeyer, PhD

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After reading this aritcle title, you might think—Wow! Advertising that Hypnotizes smokers to quit smoking. Unfortunately, advertising for smoke cessation products—albeit ostensibly to help people quit smoking—are intentionally giving the opposite subliminal message.

As a hypnotherapist, I have helped hundreds of people stop smoking and remain non-smokers. However, I have noticed the challenge is growing more difficult and I wondered why. Usually, when advertising comes on when watching a TV program I press the mute button. But my curiosity was peaked and I wondered what the latest smoke cessation advertisements were saying, because many clients said the patches, gum, etc. wasn’t helpful. Maybe they were using the wrong brand for their needs, I thought. I started watching smoke cessation product commercials. After watching several, I realized that the commercial is giving a powerful subliminal message. Smokers are told over and over that it is difficult to quit smoking. Not just difficult, but nearly impossible.

One product has a three step program. A three step program alone implies it is difficult to stop smoking. In addition the advertising points out a list of withdrawal symptoms, including nicotine cravings and side effects from quitting smoking are listed in graphic, horrific detail. One gets the impression one is going into a long difficult battle from which one might not emerge. Thus, the product advertising sets up a ‘prophesy’—it will be long difficult, if not impossible.

The advertising includes such statements as: “Smoking is the hardest addiction to end—cigarettes are as addictive as cocaine or heroine. Our product is the best. ” The side effects and withdrawal symptoms of quitting are horrendous—“so you need our product. “It’s impossible for some people to stop smoking—“and if you don’t have our product, you will never be successful. ”

If you search the Internet you will find statements such as:

  • Product A: “naturally eliminates the insomnia, tension, irritability, weight gain, nervousness, fatigue and other uncomfortable, even painful cravings and side-effects of nicotine addiction. ”

  • Product B: “has been proven to improve your mood and your ability to carry out your daily routine; decreases symptoms—sadness, hopeless, worthlessness, exhaustion and poor sleep; increase circulation to your brain and other parts of your body; and may exert protective action on your nerve cells. ”

    After hearing or reading these advertisements/commercials you know that you can expect: “Insomnia…tension…irritability…weight gain…nervousness…fatigue—as just a few of the uncomfortable and even painful symptoms quitters experience. ”

    Only one or two of these suggestions is enough to induce most people to cry ‘uncle’ and grab their ‘emergency’ pack of cigarettes. Many people are afraid to quit because they might gain weight or that it is a difficult challenge and they don’t want to be a failure—so they don’t decide to quit. Do you think you would be interested in a method that is guaranteed to work? There is one.

    There are increasing news reports, often simply news releases from the company advertising a product also give subliminal messages—giving the harmful effects of smoking and how nearly impossible it is to quit.

    With the messages about the challenges of quitting imprinted in one’s mind how easy is it for a smoker to make the decision to quit? How many products would one have to buy, apply or ingest before one felt one would be safe from those advertised side-effects? Do not allow yourself to be hypnotized by the media and the companies that want you to buy, buy, buy their product.

    One other subliminal message that everyone—smoker or non-smoker believes is—“I smoke. I am a smoker. ” One is truly only a smoker when one has a lit cigarette in their mouth and draws in the smoke. All other time—one is a non-smoker. When I tell this to my clients, they recognize the empowerment that statement gives them. I ask them—When did you smoke your last cigarette? More often then not the answer is: On the way here (my office). Even if it is only ten minutes they are a non-smoker for ten minutes and I include that statement in the post-hypnotic suggestion.

    If you want to quit, stop listening to the commercials/advertisements for products. Begin with positive self-talk. “I am a non-smoker for (fill in the time since you smoked a cigarette). “I will continue as a non-smoker effortlessly and easily one minute at a time. ” “I will remain relaxed and focused while being a non-smoker. ” “I will effortlessly and easily resist all temptation to reward my thoughts for nicotine and the smoking habit. ”

    The choice is yours—you will quit effortlessly and easily when you decide your health is more important than a smoking habit. You can quit ‘cold turkey, ’ with hypnosis, a patch, gum or other aids. Just do it. You deserve to live a healthier life.

    Dorothy M. Neddermeyer, PhD, author, 101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life, motivational speaker and inspirational leader specializes in: Mind, Body, Spirit healing and Physical/Sexual Abuse Prevention and Recovery. Dr. Neddermeyer empowers people to view life's challenges as an opportunity for Personal/Professional Growth and Spiritual Awakening.

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