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Everything posted by MarylandQuitter

  1. Our guidelines are simple. If your post content, signatures, profile images, etc. are disruptive and impact our members' enjoyment of our community we may ask you to refrain from such actions or revoke your access to this community. As I've stated elsewhere my views on freedom of speech or more aptly, the right to be published, as is often the case here, I've added them to QT's guidelines. There is a difference between freedom of speech and the right to be published. Freedom of speech will only give people the right to make their own web site to express their opinions, but they may not demand to be published on any other web sites. A good example is book publishing: You may write your own book, but you may not go to a publisher and demand them to publish it for you. If you want to publish it, and there are no publishers willing to do it, you would have to print the book yourself and contact any stores and ask them if they would sell it. If nobody will sell it, you'll have to open your own store to sell it. We're here to help and support one another and have some fun along the way. This is your community. Make it count for something.--MQ
  2. There is no way I'm gonna smoke today! NOPE.
  3. Getting ready to watch "Runner Runner" w/ Justin Timberlake and Ben Affleck and "The Family" w/ Robert DeNiro. Both look like good movies. Gotta do something to stay awake all night. Grrrrrr. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UFPqyNvNzvU http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nwZNypYmPFE
  4. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jlOEw4uCzQ4
  5. It would get too much use.
  6. Wait, we did have a like button. I have to find out what happened to it...
  7. I'll have to activate the like button! Thanks for the heads up.
  8. I love Gandhi quotes. Very humbling aren't they?
  9. At least you know you're not a vampire now!
  10. I think Netflix, Redbox and FIOS will replace the renting of DVD's. Redbox has some deal with Verizon where they stream just like Netflix.
  11. Another great series exclusive to Netflix. Cannot wait for the next season, but right now it's up in the air because they are wanting more money from the state of Maryland (they film about 15 minutes from my home) and right now they're going back and forth. Much like the politics are portrayed on the show. The Underwoods are nasty people. This next season can go in so many different directions that I can't wait to see where it goes...
  12. What value at $8 per month. If it wasn't for watching the Orioles and Ravens, I would ditch the expensive cable.
  13. I'm currently only on the 3rd season so don't spoil it for me. lol Put in big letters SPOILER at the top of your post to protect slow pokes like myself. :) When I started with the 1st season, I didn't care for the first couple of episodes and then I got bored one night and watched them all. Been hooked ever since!
  14. I am a huge John Grisham fan and if I had to pick my favorite book, it would have to be "The Summons". Right now I am working on finishing up two books. One is "The Appeal" by John Grisham and the other is "Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart" by Dr. Gordon Livingston. I wish I had more time to read but I love the escape that it provides. Reading takes you to another place and time and is a great distraction to life's curve-balls.
  15. The Health Benefits Of Quitting Smoking Start As Soon As You Put Out Your Last Cigarette
  16. Quit Smoking Recovery Timetable Within ... 20 minutes Your blood pressure, pulse rate and the temperature of your hands and feet have returned to normal. 8 hours Remaining nicotine in your bloodstream has fallen to 6.25% of normal peak daily levels, a 93.75% reduction. 12 hours Your blood oxygen level has increased to normal. Carbon monoxide levels have dropped to normal. 24 hours Anxieties have peaked in intensity and within two weeks should return to near pre-cessation levels. 48 hours Damaged nerve endings have started to regrow and your sense of smell and taste are beginning to return to normal. Cessation anger and irritability will have peaked. 72 hours Your entire body will test 100% nicotine-free. Over 90% of all nicotine metabolites (the chemicals nicotine breaks down into) have passed from your body via your urine. Symptoms of chemical withdrawal have peaked in intensity, including restlessness. Unless use cues have been avoided, the number of cue induced crave episodes experienced during any quitting day have peaked for the "average" ex-user. Lung bronchial tubes leading to air sacs (alveoli) are beginning to relax in recovering smokers. Breathing is becoming easier and your lung's functional abilities are improving. 5 - 8 days The "average" ex-smoker is down to experiencing just three cue induced crave episodes per day. Although we may not be "average" and although minutes may feel like hours when normal cessation time distortion combines with the body's panic response, it is unlikely that any single episode will last longer than 3 minutes. Keep a clock handy and time the episode to maintain an honest perspective on time. 10 days The "average" ex-user is down to encountering less than two crave episodes per day. 10 days to 2 weeks Recovery has likely progressed to the point where your addiction is no longer doing the talking. Blood circulation in your gums and teeth are now similar to that of a non-user. 2 to 4 weeks Cessation related anger, anxiety, difficulty concentrating, impatience, insomnia, restlessness and depression have ended. If still experiencing any of these symptoms get seen and evaluated by your physician. 2 weeks to 3 months Your heart attack risk has started to drop. Your lung function has noticeably improved. If your health permits, sample your circulation and lung improvement by walking briskly, climbing stairs or running further or faster than normal. 21 days The number of acetylcholine receptors, which were up-regulated in response to nicotine's presence in the frontal, parietal, temporal, occipital, basal ganglia, thalamus, brain stem and cerebellum regions of your brain have now substantially down-regulated. Receptor binding has returned to levels seen in the brains of non-smokers (2007 study). 3 weeks to 3 months Your circulation has substantially improved. Walking has become easier. Your chronic cough, if any, has likely disappeared. If not, get seen by a doctor, and sooner if at all concerned, as a chronic cough can be a sign of lung cancer. 4 weeks Plasma suPAR is a stable inflammatory biomarker that helps predict development of diseases ranging from diabetes to cancer in smokers. A 2016 study found that within 4 weeks of quitting smoking, with or without NRT, that suPAR levels in 48 former smokers had fallen from a baseline smoking median of 3.2 ng/ml to levels "no longer significantly different from the never smokers' values" (1.9 ng/ml) 8 weeks Insulin resistance in smokers has normalized despite average weight gain of 2.7 kg (2010 SGR, page 384). 1 to 9 months Any smoking related sinus congestion, fatigue or shortness of breath has decreased. Cilia have regrown in your trachea (windpipe) thereby increasing the ability to sweep dirt and mucus out of your lungs. Your body's overall energy has increased. 1 year Your excess risk of coronary heart disease, heart attack and stroke has dropped to less than half that of a smoker. 5 years Your risk of a subarachnoid hemorrhage has declined to 59% of your risk while still smoking (2012 study). If a female ex-smoker, your risk of developing diabetes is now that of a non-smoker (2001 study). 5 to 15 years Your risk of stroke has declined to that of a non-smoker. 10 years Your risk of being diagnosed with lung cancer is between 30% to 50% of that for a continuing smoker (2005 study). Risk of death from lung cancer has declined by almost half if you were an average smoker (one pack per day). Risk of cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus and pancreas have declined. Risk of developing diabetes for both men and women is now similar to that of a never-smoker (2001 study). 13 years The average smoker lucky enough to live to age 75 has 5.8 fewer teeth than a non-smoker (1998 study). But by year 13 after quitting, your risk of smoking induced tooth loss has declined to that of a never-smoker (2006 study). 15 years Your risk of coronary heart disease is now that of a person who has never smoked. Your risk of pancreatic cancer has declined to that of a never-smoker (2011 study - but note a 2nd pancreatic study making an identical finding at 20 years). 20 years If a female, your excess risk of death from all smoking related causes, including lung disease and cancer, has now reduced to that of a never-smoker (2008 study). Risk of pancreatic cancer has also declined to that of a never-smoker (2011 study). http://whyquit.com/whyquit/A_Benefits_Time_Table.html Nicotine Addiction 101 Tips For Gaining Freedom From Nicotine Addiction Caring For Your Quit Nicodemon’s Lies My Cigarette, My Friend Are You A Nicotine Junkie? The Isolation Of A Widowed Smoker The Law of Addiction A Fate Worse Than Death The Smoker's Vow Gradual Withdrawal For Your Worst Enemy Make a ticker/quit meter to track how many days you've been quit, how many cigarettes you've not smoked and how much money you've saved. It's amazing to see how much money we've wasted on cigarettes, not to mention how many we've NOT SMOKED. You can make them right here on our forum. http://www.quittrain.com/tickers/ Allen Carr’s Easy Way I’m a huge advocate of Allen Carr’s book and highly recommend that everyone give it a read. Study the book as if you’re taking an exam in college and have to pass the course. Study it some more. Grasp the concept that cigarettes do nothing for you and you’re not giving anything up by quitting. I’ve been carrying Allen Carr’s book around with me like Linus toting his blanket. Remarkably, the book and the blanket serve the same objective. Something written in the foreward, by Damian O’Hara, really hit home. Previously the book had been used as an apparatus; direction and information which laid the prep work for success. This time, the well-worn paperback means a little more to me than just a revelation. Here is the lucid sentence that brought me back home. “In fact, like many smokers, I came to see the cigarette as my best friend, my ‘me’ time, my island of peace and tranquility in a crazy world, my ever present companion.” Ah yes, this crazy, messed up world in which we live. My crazy place in time still remains and smoking didn’t change it, ease it or make it more tolerable. All it did was leave me with regret. I can’t go back and undo what has been done but I can move forward. The good news is that I didn’t go back to where I had left off and quitting now is simply like dropping junk-mail into the recycling bin. I first saw the video clip below of Allen Carr speaking about his Easy Way to stop smoking. I was intrigued enough to buy his book, “Easy Way To Stop Smoking”, and it was a game changer for me. I never looked at smoked the same way again. I never in my wildest dreams could have thought that quitting smoking could not only be enjoyable, but also easy. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0TL2Vh7goJc
  17. Before you take that one puff and throw your quit away, remember that everything you've gone through so far will have to be repeated. Please make a new thread in this board so we can respond and help you keep your quit. Whatever you're feeling is only temporary and nothing is worth giving up your quit over. Not one puff ever. Myself and the moderators are immediately alerted each time a post is created in this forum. Please do not smoke! "If you're going through hell, keep going." - Winston Churchill
  18. "Death in the West- The Marlboro Story " "Sex, Lies and Cigarettes" "The Tobacco Conspiracy" "We Love Cigarettes" "Memoirs of a Cigarette" "Children Of Tobacco" "What’s In A Cigarette?" "Indonesian Toddler Smokes 40 Cigarettes Per Day"
  19. Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable

    1. Bassman


      Come on in to your new home...we'll even leave the light on for you and do the NOPE Shuffle.........

  20. Remove the desire to smoke and you will never smoke again. Practice on removing the desire to smoke until you firmly believe that you get nothing from it. Until then, use your smoking addiction to help you quit smoking. That’s right, you read correctly. You, me and millions more rationalized smoking even though we knew the consequences. Use those same veteran rationalization skills to rationalize quitting smoking. Think about that for a minute. If we could rationalize smoking knowing full well the damaging effects it had on our health, why can’t we rationalize quitting smoking knowing full well the health benefits of quitting? Based from my experience, the most important attribute to a successful quit, which is a non burdensome quit, is to remove the desire to smoke by understanding and believing that the cigarette has nothing to offer. This and only this will allow for a lifetime of freedom and never leave you feeling like you’re giving something up or missing out by living life as a non-smoker. So many have relapsed and so many more are too afraid to quit smoking because of all the horror stories they’ve heard about nicotine withdrawal when you quit. That horror only exists in our minds, if we let it. Of course we’ll have mild withdrawal and mental triggers that may cause cravings, but they’re far from horrific and certainly nothing more than we’ve already experienced. Quitting smoking is not hard. In fact, the whole process is quite enjoyable if we only focus on the benefits of being a non-smoker. There is no need to focus on anything else because we’re not giving anything up. We’re not missing out. The cravings come and go and soon will be gone forever. Even while we were smoking, the unwavering loyalty of our body was trying to heal itself while we kept poisoning it. It never gave up on us despite that we were putting things in our mouths and setting them on fire to feed our addiction. Once we quit smoking, our bodies take a huge sigh of relief and work overtime to make up for lost time and starts healing and repairing the damage that we caused it. The easy part for some is the initial quit while for others it’s staying quit. Ask 10 people and the answers will vary. The reality is that everyone can quit smoking and stay that way. If you’re finding it difficult to stay quit it’s because you think the cigarette still has something to offer you. This is why I relapsed. This is why others’ invariably relapse. Never give up and just continue to remove the desire to smoke by knowing with every ounce of who you are that the cigarette offers you nothing. It can’t do a thing for you. It’s impossible that it can relieve stress, doesn’t taste good and certainly is no reward. Some get this right away. Others, like myself, it took a little longer. But now that I know this, the desire to smoke has been successfully removed and although I still get a trigger here and there (just part of being a nicotine addict), I know it won’t do a damn thing for me. You can get there too. Never, ever stop striving to get there. Never smoke again. Not one puff, ever (N.O.P.E.). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qVEyGdqwjmQ
  21. Quit Train®, 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. This is not an environment where anybody will be judged as we only exist to offer education, support and acceptance. Through education and sharing experiences, we can all help each other to keep this nasty, deadly addiction out of our lives. We all want the same thing; to stay smoke-free and enjoy our lives of living as a non-smoker and all of the health benefits and freedom that it offers. Anybody can quit smoking and anybody can stay that way. It's a matter of finding a good combination of education and support to expose the lies of smoking in a comfortable, come as you are environment. We welcome all with open arms and hope that you can make this your safe haven to take your freedom back and get on with the business of living life as a non-smoker. ------------------------------------- This is a post that Joel used to use quite often at the Freedom From Nicotine Message Board before they implemented their no relapse policy. While it's no longer used at Freedom, it's a very insightful and an excellent message for all of us, especially those who have relapsed and most importantly, mirrors our ideology concerning relapse. A special thanks to Joel for allowing us to use this. I tried freedom once, why bother trying again? Some past participants have shown a certain reluctance to return to Freedom after relapsing back to smoking. Many are embarrassed to come back admitting failure. Others feel they tried Freedom once, and, since they went back to smoking, its techniques must not have worked for them, so why bother trying the same approach again? Still others feel it is an inconvenience and an unnecessary commitment of time and effort considering they "heard it all before." The concept of returning after a relapse may seem embarrassing at first, but, the ex-smoker will probably see quickly he is not alone. Many people have had past quits prior to joining Freedom and understand the fragility of a quit. They will generally understand and accept the presence of repeaters enthusiastically. Relapsers offer a strong confirmation of the concept of addiction to our old members and to all new participants. They often openly share their past experience of how, after initially quitting, they came to a point of complacency which allowed the relapse to occur. They generally reflect back at their non-smoking period as a time where they felt emotionally and physically better, and then openly express the disgust and misery that the relapse brought on. Not only did it cause embarrassment, physical discomfort, and maybe even serious health complications, but also, it was putting them through quitting all over again. Their insights offer a valuable lesson to first time participants not to make the one tragic mistake that could lead them back to smoking and the need for quitting over again--taking a puff on a cigarette. As far as it being an inconvenience, while reading and posting may take a chunk of time out of a smokers life the first few days, in all probability, there is nothing a smoker has to do the week that he or she is stopping that is as important as quitting smoking. Failure to touch base daily with us because of conflicts of time with social or even professional commitments makes about as much sense as a cancer patient skipping life saving chemotherapy treatments for the same events. Missing an entire day because of prior time commitments may jeopardize the quitting process or the long-term maintenance of smoking cessation. This may cost the person his or her life. In the long run, it will probably be viewed as an error in judgment by the patient as well as any significant others who recognize what was put at risk and what was lost in the process. For those who feel that Freedom didn't work, the fact is that the techniques taught here didn't fail, the smoker's implementation did. Only one recurrent theme runs through Freedom: if you don't wish to go back to smoking--NEVER TAKE ANOTHER PUFF! No one ever went back to smoking without disregarding that rule. Relapsing is an automatic admission that the smoker disregarded the basic principal taught at Freedom. As far as feeling that "I've heard it all before," being a relapser is evidence enough that the smoker did not hear it or comprehend it all before, or is the type of person who needs to hear it over and over again in order to keep believing it. Repeaters are people who have trouble initially accepting or keeping the concept of addiction alive. This trait is in all probability the reason why the ex-smoker originally relapsed, or maybe didn't stop at all the first time. He or she reached a point of complacency where it was believed that smoking could be controlled at an acceptable level. Smoking is an all or nothing proposition. The repeater must recognize the reason for the past failure and learn from the experience. Otherwise, he or she will be doomed to repeat it over and over again. If you have gone back to smoking, come in and try again. Once you quit smoking, do everything in your power to stay off. Come in for continued reinforcement and witness the mistakes of other past participants who got complacent. As far as addiction goes, it is much better to learn from others' mistakes than having to attend later due to your own. You just don't know whether you will ever have the strength, desire, or opportunity to quit the next time. In today's society, failing to stay off smoking carries long-term risks which include loss of social status, and respect of others; financial implications which range from supporting an addiction costing hundreds to thousands of dollars per year as well as possibly costing your job and career; and, most significantly, eventual loss of health, and possibly loss of life. Considering all of this, the choice to quit smoking and to stay off is an important one. To keep the ability to stay off smoking you need to always remember to NEVER TAKE ANOTHER PUFF! © Joel Spitzer, 2000
  22. I started smoking when I was in my early teens and continued off and on for the next 28 years. During that period there were a couple of quits which lasted several years. My last major attempt at quitting smoking was in 2005 in which I was able to stay smoke-free for just under 6 years. In 2011, I made the decision to throw my quit away one evening when I was in a stressful situation and decided that smoking a cigarette would relax me. When I took my first puff that evening I felt like I was home. I wondered why I had even quit smoking at all in the first place. I thought I enjoyed it and even thought to myself that smoking was the greatest thing on earth. I had no regrets, only satisfaction. I didn’t know a single thing about nicotine addiction and ignorantly believed all the lies. I was a junkie. No, not some junkie out on the street begging and stealing to feed my addiction but rather a well dressed professional with a wife and three wonderful children. But make no mistake about it, I was a junkie just the same in need of a fix of nicotine to make everything better. This one cigarette woke up my nicotine addiction and I continued to smoke for ~2 years. In early December I went to see my Dr. about something unrelated and before I left I decided to mention that I wanted to quit smoking but enjoyed it too much. I told him that I could quit if I really wanted to, I just didn’t want to. I told him that I wanted to quit smoking for my family because they meant everything to me and I knew that the cigarettes would eventually catch up with me if I didn’t quit for good. In a nutshell, he told me I was full of shit. He told me that my family wasn’t the most important thing in my life, cigarettes were. He also went on to tell me that I was an addict to which I laughed and said “you’re telling me that I’m an addict because I’m smoking tobacco? It’s not like I’m shooting heroin or snorting cocaine.” He chuckled to himself and said “you’re the exact definition of an addict and the only reason why you’re not out on the streets stealing to feed your addiction is because cigarettes are legal.” I was mad as I sat there. How could this man say these things to me? I really do enjoy smoking. I sat and I listened. He gave me a prescription for Wellbutrin XL to help me quit smoking. I told him that I didn’t need any medication to quit smoking and he informed me that I had been smoking for nearly 28 years with several failed attempts at quitting and whatever I was doing was not working. After about 5 days the medication started to work to the point that after 2 or 3 pulls on a cigarette, I would get sick to my stomach and be on the verge of puking. Still, I lit one cigarette after another hoping that the nausea would not last, but it did and finally on December 17, 2012, I decided that I had enough and quit. This time I stayed nicotine free for 9 months and was sure I would never smoke again. I spent hour after hour, day after day reading everything I could about nicotine addiction. I watched the documentaries about the evil tobacco companies (which are on this website and very good I might add), joined a support group online and was sure I had all the answers to staying quit for good. But as things go, I relapsed again in September 2013 because of one reason; I still believed that the cigarette had something to offer me. After all of the reading and learning about nicotine addiction, none of it mattered because somewhere in the back of my mind I still believed in the cigarette. Thankfully, my relapse was short-lived and lasted only 1 week and 1 pack of cigarettes. What a shame it was to light the first of some 20 odd cigarettes after being smoke-free for ~9 months. Still, I believe that it was the best thing that I could have done, as odd as that may sound. Those 9 months prior that I speak of, although smoke-free, I was still believing somewhere in the back of my mind that cigarettes could offer me something because of my triumphant reunion with them nearly two years prior. It was all a big lie perpetuated by me. When I bought that pack in October I thought it would help. After reading Allen Carr’s book several times and being proactive for so many months, who was I kidding? The only thing I got from it was emptiness. It was at this moment and 19 cigarettes later that I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that cigarettes could not do a damn thing for me. It took a one week relapse for me to 100% believe that no matter what happens in life, no matter how crappy I feel, cigarettes will not do anything. With each and every cigarette I analyzed how I felt. From the very first pull on that cigarette I was ultra aware of how I was feeling. I remembered Allen Carr. I remembered the lies. I remembered all the former smokers in the support group. I recalled all I had read about this addiction. I was still waiting for the enjoyment because I thought it really existed. Not only did I not get one bit of enjoyment from any of it, but I also found out the hard way that there isn’t a single thing enjoyable about smoking. It wasn’t until I truly understood that I got nothing from smoking that I willingly put the cigarettes down without any medication and without a second thought. So, in some strange way, I’m glad that I relapsed because it removed this myth that I was still believing and the result is a quit that cannot be shaken. I know it because as stubborn as I am, once I know something to be truth, my mind cannot be changed. I had to prove it to myself to fully believe. It’s rare that I must do such things because I’m usually very good at learning from others’ mistakes as well as my own. But with smoking, I was still romancing the past which just turned out to be some burlesque side show fantasy. However, close to the end of that week of smoking I could feel the addiction coming on strong. Had I not chosen to quit smoking on October 7th, 2013, I feel that I would have fallen back into a full blown nicotine addiction and smoking 30-40 cigarettes per day as that was my usual routine. I was probably just a few cigarettes away from this happening and it was scary to relive those feelings of being physically and mentally addicted to smoking constantly needing to feed the throngs of nicotine withdrawal. This is not a place that I ever want to revisit. If you think that you enjoy smoking or that is somehow relaxes you, then you still think that smoking cigarettes can still offer you something of benefit. This is romanticizing the cigarette, also known as junkie thinking, whether you want to believe it or not. Leaving this door open is dangerous because something will happen along the way that will allow the addiction to creep in and when you least expect it, you’ve relapsed. If you think that you enjoyed anything about smoking it means that you’re depriving yourself or giving up something that you enjoy when you quit smoking. The worst case scenario is a relapse and the next worse thing is a constant battle. Someone once used drugs and sex was as an analogy to quitting smoking. This is false and cannot be compared because sex and drugs such as heroin, are enjoyable the first time they are tried. The first time many heroin users shoot up they loved it. How many of us loved our first cigarette? None. Smoking is not enjoyable and so long as you believe that it is or was, you’re only making staying quit much harder than it needs to be. Actually, quitting smoking can be enjoyable if you’re able to focus on your body and how it’s repairing itself. Your lungs. Your skin. Your teeth. The newly learned discipline that you’ve used because you never thought you could quit smoking, much less even wanted to quit. Lastly, a relapse doesn’t happen without first romancing or allowing junkie thinking to creep in. No situation, as bad as it may be, will force you to smoke unless you’re still believing that you can get something from the cigarette. Quitting smoking takes no action, only non-action. Don’t ever take another puff. Remember “N.O.P.E.” each and every day and make it a priority over life and all of it’s ups and downs. Never smoke again. Not one puff, ever (N.O.P.E.).

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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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