I smoke and although it is agreed by many that smoking is a bad thing for our physical health, I find certain aspect beneficial, as it forces me away from a situation to contemplate, or at least gives me a reasonable excuse, I see smoking as beneficial to my mental health, and one of the main reasons I find it difficult to quit.
People do things for many reasons and if they feel sorrow due to what they have done or has occurred in life due to failure or external happenings which are going to happen, and are not something to be averted nor avoided as they will happen during our life no matter what so we should live and not shy away from it.
That which is learnt can be altered and superstitions come from this such as a local custom where I live is too whistle when someone says r.a.t. or punch them as it is seen as a type of curse, but in reality saying a word can not bring bad fortune or invoke the animal to come, but it can bring mental hardships, if you look at things people do when things stop working we try everything and eventually do very strange things in order to make things work, that is essentially what superstitions and habits are, a pursuit of happiness and freedom from sorrow.
At the end of the day I may be right, I may be wrong, but I share this hoping I am one or the other.