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Showing content with the highest reputation since 10/17/19 in Blog Entries

  1. 8 points
    "But I enjoyed smoking!" I hear that again and again from folks struggling to quit. (I've heard my own inner addict's voice whisper it a thousand times.) And so I ask this question: Was smoking ever REALLY enjoyable? One of the keys to my success this time around has been to remind myself that smoking was never really something I enjoyed. Not really. Remember that very first cigarette--the burning sensation in your throat, the acrid smell of the smoke, the cough following that first hit? I still remember it. Why did I continue to smoke? It wasn't because I enjoyed it. It was because the nicotine receptors in my brain woke up after my FIRST puff and immediately began screaming for more. I was hooked from the get-go. Smoking wasn't something I enjoyed. When I really think about it, smoking was something I hated. I hated the guilt and shame. I hated sneaking around whilst trying to hide my habit from my disappointed loved ones. I hated the dirty looks I got from non-smokers when I lit up in public. I hated the smell that permeated my clothes, my skin, my hair, my car. I hated cleaning foul, dirty ashtrays. I hated spending money only to watch it burn up. I hated huddling on the porch in the cold and rain, trying to stay warm and dry while puffing away like some kind of fiend. I hated coughing every time I laughed. I hated wheezing every time I climbed even a short flight of stairs. I hated the ulcers in my nose that wouldn't heal. And I hated the fear that each cigarette brought me a little bit closer to death. So where does that sense of "enjoyment" come from? Because I thought for years that smoking was something I liked doing. That's why I threw away quits in the past--I thought I was missing out on something. But the more I learned about nicotine addiction, the more I began to realize the truth: smoking was something I did to fulfill a craving. That's it. That sense of enjoyment was actually my inner addict's sense of relief at getting another fix. Even that first cigarette of the day, which was always my "favorite," was not an enjoyable experience. It was simply providing a rush of nicotine after 8 hours of withdrawal. (Yes, even in sleep my body was always begging for another hit.) Ok, so maybe I enjoyed the lovely quiet mornings spent on my porch with a cup of coffee. Guess what? I can still enjoy those. And I can breathe in lots of fresh, clean air while I enjoy them. Because now I'm truly enjoying them. I'm not simply satisfying a need. A need I created when I took that very first puff. (Isn't that sad?) I didn't enjoy smoking. I do, however, enjoy being smoke free. Attitude is everything in a successful quit. Change your thoughts about the habit itself, and it will save you down the road. Trust me.
  2. 7 points
    Renewed my effort to quit following more thoughtful watching of Allen Carr's video and mindfulness moments while I smoked. It is day five. Days one and two dragged, with many strong cravings. Days three through five passed by without too much trouble from cravings until late afternoon and this evening. I resorted to using a 14 mg patch -- I want to see how much of this is psychological for me and how much is physical craving. I'd say it is psychological, far and above physical. Today cravings were intense and I breathed and just sat mindfully through them. Perhaps four times I told myself that I was going to cave, so just go to the store and get it over with. I reminded myself of how nasty the cigarette would taste after nearly a week of not having one to blunt my taste buds. I reminded myself of the tangible harm I notice that is done -- irreparable, I think, though I am hoping for a little bit of healing. Day five is closing, I am going to sleep. I think tomorrow will be better than today because I have the practice of having worked through some strong urges to go and buy cigarettes. It's pouring rain right now (typical Seattle weather), and I like falling asleep to the sound of rain. Not ready to join the NOPE pledge yet. I want more time, more days, of being quit first. I have a lot of failures in my past and don't want to let myself down again. I feel hopeful, but I have been hopeful before. For now, I am just grateful to have succeeded for five days.
  3. 6 points
    When I was in the shower I started thinking about my history with the cigarette. And I thought it might be an interesting story to share as so many others have been through the same thing. I was introduced to the normality of tobacco when I was 4 years old. Every male member of my family was a smoker. My granddad on my dad's side was the king; He smoked every variation there was: cigarettes, pipe, cigars and even prune (of course that last one he did not light up :P) . My mom's dad smoked camels - oddly enough I have smoked that same brand for many many years. My dad made his own roll-ups, which I as a 4 year old could buy and roll for my dad. He loved that.. and I loved doing it, cause I was good at it. For many many years we, as kids, were surrounded by poison and it left an imprint. It was normal, it was your right as a human being, it was your own choice. I didn't even think it was cool as a teenager. It was just normal. A way to ease emotions, get through lunch breaks at school, a way to find new friends on the schoolyard. In the 90's the " anti-tobacco lobby" started to grow. We used to call it that because me and my alternative/grungy friends thought we were pushed into the boring bourgeois life and the whole cancer thing was overrated and just a way to scare us. At the beginning of the millennium the realization became real and the severity started to show. I didn't cough but the rest of my friends started to show cracks. So when I wanted to get pregnant in 2001 I stopped, without any hesitation. There was no doubt in my mind it was bad for a baby, and "it" didn't have that voice yet, so I had to be the voice of reason. Unfortunately I relapsed when Morrigun was 7 months old. I didn't feel bad about it. I didn't see the danger.. Now I know that I didn't see myself as a non smoker at that time, but as a smoker that temporarily did not smoke for good reasons. And then, there was the internet. Stuff got out, articles got published, facts started to emerge.. and it finally seeped in , slowly but surely - this is bad for me! Really bad! Looking back it's no wonder that I started smoking, it was such a normal thing - but I do regret every cig, every puff - and at the same time I do forgive myself for it. The only way to get where I want to be, is to "NOPE" every single day, every single moment - and come to terms with myself as a human being.
  4. 5 points
    Wow I am almost at the 1 month quit experience! And it is.. eh yeah.. eventful to say the least. My first week was an awesome high, my second week was a mix of coughs, colds, and mixed feelings.. Then the germany trip, week 3, that has set me back.. the ads and the availability got into my head, the romancing started again.. emotions flared up and I have been trapped inside my head. I couldn't stop crying two days ago.. I almost convinced myself this quiting thing was not something I was strong enough for (-yes *ding ding ding* all the red flags there) I had to force myself to pledge... but it got easier and I can actually socialize again and tell everyone I am sti here, on the train... The only by-product now is that I have been so tense that my muscles are hurting like mad.. so I need to go and get a massage... which my autistic brain hates! (Like dentists and hairdressers.. or shopping in general.... )
  5. 5 points
    I've been sick a few days and today I feel much much better, but also home alone since Friday. And that gives me way too much time to think, ponder, over-analyse and lose myself in addiction thinking. So I hung on like a crazy woman. Reading a lot of this and watching a lot of that to keep my head clear in a very literal way. I also wrote down a lot of lies that my addiction keeps telling me in this quit. Time to address one and deal with it. "What does it matter anyway, you are not worth it... " This is a big red flag to me. I have been depressed in the past, and addiction is a mean s.o.b. I'll spare you the details, but I have been fighting and working real hard to be " just happy" from a real early age, and I am happier than I have ever been at the moment. Until that tiny moment I feel lonely or panicky or anything that even resembles that past feeling, my brain reverts back to suicidal tendencies. Not that I want to- but my brain is so programmed to have that way out, that it will go there without my consent. Like a tiny seed that will always be there and starts growing the moment you look away. And my addiction is using that to wiggle it's way in again. On one side - " The urge to find peace and quiet" . Because that's what I actually wanted.. not death, but I was so tired of fighting and surviving.. I just wanted some peace and quiet. And on the other side - "The need to stop fighting and let life go" - and the cig will make sure off that eventually. But I choose Life Every day Actively And I enjoy the heck out of it! I wanted to address the topic of depression and addiction, because I know many are struggling and are ashamed to go into these kinds of thoughts. I have learned to talk about them, openly. The thoughts and feelings are only a danger if I keep them in the shadows and hide them. And I don't want to be part of this statistic - I want to be the exception to the rule! NOPE!!
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QuitTrain®, a quit smoking support community, was created by former smokers who have a deep desire to help people quit smoking and to help keep those quits intact.  This place should be a safe haven to escape the daily grind and focus on protecting our quits.  We don't believe that there is a "one size fits all" approach when it comes to quitting smoking.  Each of us has our own unique set of circumstances which contributes to how we go about quitting and more importantly, how we keep our quits.


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