Former smokers do not miss many things about the habit, but ask around and you’ll find that smoke breaks are definitely one of them. While some companies do allow for progressive ideas like “fitness breaks”, usually you don’t get an excuse to leave the office during work unless it’s for lunch, unless you smoke.
Getting the chance to get outside of work and talk to friends in a smoker’s area, standing outside of the pub and actually being able to hear people talking - smoking is a very social habit, and not something other nicotine replacement therapy methods can replace in this respect as well as vaping can.
Vaping is a conversation starter
If you pull out a vape tank or pen in a public place, you’re sure to start a conversation. Fellow vapers will happily go on about their favourite mods and juices, and smokers will curiously ask you how the experience is going. Either way, you’re bound to make just as many friends with vaping, without the unpleasant side effects of smoking.
Vaping is a growing subculture
Hang out at a vape shop long enough and you’ll understand that vaping isn’t merely a way to quit smoking - it’s a subculture of like-minded individuals who want to stick it to Big Tobacco and Big Pharma by using an alternative method to quit smoking, or who simply want to quit smoking. In many ways, it is similar to other movements such as skateboarding or surfing in that a number of diverse people are brought together in pursuit of the same activity.
And it isn’t just bearded hipsterbros who are mocked in Internet memes - vaping subculture includes everyone. This journalist went to a vaping trade show to mock it, and ended up being a convert at the end. That’s an almost universal experience - everyone who walks into a local vape shop is welcomed, as it’s generally assumed that they are there for the same noble purpose as everyone else. Granted, a vape shop has the general vibe of a head shop, but for many that is part of the experience.
Vaping can also be more like a hobby, although if you don’t want to go that far with it, you certainly don’t have to. You can get into making your own eliquids, go to vape competitions to see who can blow the biggest clouds and do the best tricks.
Vaping is very inclusive for women as well - while many are hesitant to hang out in a vape lounge due to popular portrayal of vapers as masculine bro-types, women are twice as likely to try vaping as men. Vapers also do a measured amount of self-policing; if a fellow vaper gets out of hand by blowing vapour into someone’s face, they will get called out.
Most of all, the vaping community is there to help one another kick a very deadly habit that will leave those who manage to do it happier and healthier. Having a community surrounding you when you are trying to quit smoking is nothing but helpful, and is part of the reason that local stop smoking services are so effective. And it’s certainly more social than slapping on a patch, popping a pill or chewing on nicotine gum.
Image Credit: Lindsay Fox