At one time in my life, I was a 4 pack a day smoker. Smoking is the worst addiction ever. The desire to smoke overpowers most people's will power. And you can always find an excuse to start back again. Everyone around me smokes. I am too stressed out. I need a cigarette to calm my nerves, then I can quit again. I will just smoke one then quit. I said all the lines to myself and others many times over.
I started at the age of 16 and smoked more on than off from then on. I quit for a while with each of my 3 pregnancies. But it did not last. I quit 3 more times over the years, they did not last either. But each time I quit, I told myself, if I wanted to, I could smoke again.
The last time I quit, the doctor told me if I did not quit, I would die. I still had 3 teens at home who needed a mother. And I did not want to die. I had seen what emphysema was like from watching my father struggle to breathe. I did not want that for myself.
When I quit for the last time, I had to tell myself, this is the last time I can smoke. I can never smoke again. Every time I wanted a cigarette after that, I asked myself, am I bigger than a cigarette, or is the cigarette bigger than me? My answer was always, no, I am bigger than they are. That helped me through it.
After 26 years of smoking heavily, I quit cold turkey, while working stressful night shifts at the hospital with other smokers.
I was bigger than cigarettes are.
Now, 30 years later, the smell of cigarettes nauseates me. I no longer have a desire for them.
I will tell you one other thing that helped me quit. When I first quit smoking, I cut a drinking straw to the size of a cigarette. Each time I felt like I NEEDED a cigarette, I used the straw like one. Pretended to light it, puffed on it, tapped it in an ashtray, while talking on the phone, drinking a soda, after eating, etc., then I put it out.
Yes, I felt silly doing it, but it worked for me. It had the right feel to it, and it was psychologically satisfying, while not filling my lungs with smoke, but pure air. After a few weeks of that, I no longer needed it anymore, and could do without.
One other time, that I quit smoking on my own, each time I wanted a cigarette, I brushed my teeth, then exercised to beat heck. Cigarettes taste terrible after brushing your teeth. Exercise takes your mind off wanting the cigarette. I quit that time too, and lost weight. But unfortunately, I had not told myself that that was the last time I would ever smoke again. It was still one of those times when I was giving myself permission to start again if I wanted to do so.
John, you can do it too. I have faith in you. It is just will power over the mind tricks of cigarette addiction.
Now let us know how you are doing with the quitting.