Self-Control and Smoking

    Self-control involves many types of controlling responses. The controlling responses I will be talking about in this post include physical restraint, doing something else, self-reinforcement and self-punishment. Controlling responses help alter how often or how little a controlled response occurs. In this blog post, we will be exploring how to use these controlling responses in order to lessen smoking behaviors.

    When it comes to physical restraint, you will manipulate the environment in order to prevent smoking from occurring. Some ways you can do this is leave your money at home so you won’t buy any cigarettes, or leaving your car at your friend's home so you have no transportation to get cigarettes. My mother personally used the physical restraint controlling response and it helped her quit smoking. By doing something else, you can help decrease your smoking behavior as well. Instead of smoking, you can do something else by sucking on a lollipop. Sucking on a lollipop can also help decrease the oral fixations associated with smoking.

    By reinforcing your own behavior, smoking can start to decrease. You can give yourself a snack every time you don’t buy cigarettes, or if someone offers you a cigarette, and you say no, you can reward yourself by taking yourself somewhere you like. On the other hand, there is self-punishment. Some examples of self-punishment as related to smoking include taking away your technology privileges every time you smoke. It has been found that self-punishment tends to fail when it comes to delivering the actual consequences. However, when people are aware that the consequences must occur, the self-punishment is more effective.


Powell, R. A., Symbaluk, D. G., & Honey, P. L. (2023). Introduction to learning and behavior. Cengage.


  1. Great post! I enjoyed reading your well written and thought provoking response on self control. I liked your examples of ways individuals who want to quit smoking can alter their environment in order to reduce temptations. I definitely agree that replacing smoking with a different oral fixation such as a lollipop would be beneficial. It is also a great idea to reward yourself for changing an unwanted behavior, such as smoking.


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