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TobacNO

How long did it take?

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For those of you who have a good amount of time since your last smoke, How long into your quit were you when you started to feel "normal"?

 

 What I mean is how many days or weeks was it when the cravings, irritability etc. etc. faded into the background?

 

  I realize everyone's feelings are different so I'd like to hear from as many of you as possible.

 

   Thanks in advance for your time, Allen 

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Great question Allen but you're right about every quit being different. For me I think the irritability lasted about a month. However the constant thinking about cigarettes lasted longer, probably a good two or three months. As far as the craves, they still come from time to time however they are so weak that they're easily ignored. 

I think as addicts we can probably anticipate craves for years but after the first year and getting through all the seasons, holidays etc. any crave we do get is laughable.

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How long is a piece of string... I'm only 9 months along so I have a fair way to travel yet... the totally irrational anger and short fuse ready to blow if someone even breaths too loud... that was starting to ease of for me around the 4 week mark, the fogginess a bit further along...the changes are gradual so its a case of one day you just realise, hey I haven't had an NRT chewie (my quit method) in a few days, lets just stop those then and get rid of them... or that was a crave and yep now its gone, haven't had one of those for a few days...woohoo... So I still have moments where I would love one but they don't last long and it isn't the gnawing ache it was in the early days. I can honestly say I have not had any real thought of smoking, one that I would have acted on that is, in over a month, I know it will come but not for a while. So today I dragged out an old bag looking for something and there was a pack in there... no I haven't touched this bag in over 18 months so it was an old couple of smokes.... so I shook the box, oh a couple in there... I opened the box to find 3.... and I screwed them up and tossed them in the bin... there was a tiny flicker of a thought, just one drag.... but it was gone as soon as it entered my head... I know its not over, I know I will have bad days but in a way I am lucky I was tested early in my quit and if I could get through the curve balls life threw me in my first 3 months quit without a smoke then I can get through anything. (touching of multiple wooden surfaces, making the sign of the cross and offering a prayer... dear God and Fate I have not tempted you to proove me wrong, I do not need a challenge).

 

Edit to add: Until about the 3 month mark if someone around me was smoking I would breath deeply and revel in the smell... now the smell of someone smoking makes me feel like I'm gunna loose my lunch, I can't stand the smell.. I think I did a post (on another site) to the effect that I walked passed my bus stop one night so I could continue to smell the person walking in front of me smoking... I just don't understand anymore how I could have done that, let alone wanted to.

Edited by notsmokinjo
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Coming up on my first year here.

 

After i made it through three entire days, I at least knew i was able to quit. I think it took about a week before i was mostly OK.

I never had a crave at three weeks which is amazing because i was at a friend's house one night as she was smoking weed and tobacco and drinking etc.

The three month mark about broke my quit. I was doing fine then out of no where, had worse craves than I ever have.

 

Anyways, yeah it is hard to say but most likely by a week in you won't feel real bad and by two weeks you will start to really feel normal.

However, random craves do come and go.

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Hi Allen, though I'm only 4 weeks in... I'd still like to comment.  My irritability is almost back to normal proportions (but if a bad mood hits... chances are I blame quitting again, while that's not the case!!). I don't experience any heavy cravings, but I do have a lot of smoking thoughts during the day. They truly are just patterns that I need to get rid of.  And yes, sometimes they annoy the sh*t out of me. And they do scare me at times. But, whatever. I'm smarter anyway.

 

Cravings, irritability etc. fading into the background is not something that happens overnight. They just... fade. :) And return. And fade further. And suddenly return. And then... wow, didn't have a real craving for three days now! Etc. As much as you'd like a time frame for that, I personally haven't heard of one yet. Each day you encounter new triggers. Together these moments build up and lead to a stronger you, which eventually should lead not only to a 'normal' you again, but to a healthier and more balanced you. When I quit for over three years, I fully experienced this new normal around my one year mark, but on my way there I had lots and lots of 'new normal' moments. 

 

This morning I thought, 'wow, how disgusting to smoke in your car. So pleased I'm not doing that anymore'. It wasn't a forced happy thought to push away craving... it was a honest, genuine thoght. Woohoo, normality is on it's way!    

 

 

 

    

  

Edited by My life, my recovery
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Hi Allen, I'm ten months quit. I never really felt irritable and never got bad cravings. I had what felt like a fog and I was eating more and exercising less. I'm still kinda doing that ha! But i feel like the fog has cleared. But that lasted a few months for sure. But that period was not all bad, I was buzzing every day because I wasn't smoking! 

My 'normal' now is very different to my previous smoking self 'normal'. And without a shadow of a doubt it's much better and I'm a much better person for it. More chilled, happier, more confident, richer, smell better, healthier....i could go on and on. The more positive you are the easier your quit will be, celebrate every day, do not dwell on any smoking thoughts, that's what I did anyway 😉 

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4 hours ago, TobacNO said:

For those of you who have a good amount of time since your last smoke, How long into your quit were you when you started to feel "normal"?

 

 What I mean is how many days or weeks was it when the cravings, irritability etc. etc. faded into the background?

 

  I realize everyone's feelings are different so I'd like to hear from as many of you as possible.

 

   Thanks in advance for your time, Allen 

 

I don't remember how long I was irritable after I quit smoking but heck, I'm still irritable and it has nothing to do with nicotine.  :1_grinning:

 

After I accepted that getting to the point where I no longer would think of smoking 24/7, I was going to have to put in "the time".

 

Once I understood that the more time I put between my last cigarette, the less I would think of it.  A lot of the cravings after a certain point are mental, but nonetheless are still cravings and IMO, just as powerful and if not more.  However, they're very manageable because you have control over how you act or dwell on thoughts when they enter your mind.  Trust me, the more time you put in, the less you think about, much less consider smoking.  Remember this is going to take some time because for a long time, everything we did revolved around smoking.  Everything.

 

 

 

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Thank you all for sharing your experiences, They were just what I needed this morning!

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I think I took too long in forcing myself to think of other things, it was a real mind fcuk.

The first few weeks were intense, gradually the thoughts became dimmer.

Forcing myself to look at some beauty, replacing the smokey thought with a thought or a visual of something beautiful really helped me,

I would also think, say, scream, 'FREE YOUR HEAD' , often using  my outside voice for this...and the usual expletives.

 

I gave this quitting smoking 'whim' of mine a year.  I thought, after a year I will re-evaluate.

Of course,  after a year....of perseverance and commitment and education....there was no way I would return to slavery.

 

You are asking the same question I asked.  How long !

Well, it can last a while.

The important thing is that it won't last.

Remember....you thought about smoking every 20 or so minutes for YEARS.

The difference is that now you aren't feeding your addiction so, you notice.

 

Give yourself some time.  You're in the thick of it now,

I PROMISE, things will settle down to a new normal and you will be a changed man

 

 

Edited by Sazerac
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@TobacNO  Hi there!!

 

I have to say this quit (39 days in!) has been a breeze for me. My life revolved around smoking. Eat, smoke, clean, smoke, work, go break to smoke...even work out then SMOKE!

I feel so much better--breathing better, my skin looks better. It is just better! I feel this time it only took me about a week or so to feel normal. The thoughts are what are there now BUT then i just think about how good i feel and that is all it takes, or i come here, a life saving site!! You can do this! Mind over matter!

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I would say around 6 weeks for me to understand that I would actually be able to return to normal one day. The brain fog was the thing that bothered me most and that was getting better by then. I will say though that I was probably not absolutely confident that I would make it all the way to a life long quit until somewhere between month 6 and month 7 of my quit. Even at 1 year, I have still been making some progress. I rarely even think about smoking these days unless I'm on this forum taking about it.

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5 months for me. Then it was smooth sailing. After 1 year theres no struggle whatsoever.

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As to "how long" each person is different as you can see.  After decades of smoking I am not looking for normal as in before, I am looking and embracing the new normal -- looking at each day quit and rejoicing in that (this, besides daily NOPE, has been my biggest motivator).  Everything gets better with the passing of time but really just focus and celebrate each day and before you know it -- those cravings will be so easy to ignore.

Edited by Martian5
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 I knew I could never smoke again from the beginning......I remember feeling comfortable round about  10 months....

But I was ridding myself of a 52 year addiction....

Don't over think....it doesn't matter how long....its not the time it takes...it's just  about reaching freedom...

Some take the high way..some take the long senic route...

One day at a time...this is how we all achieve our goal...

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Hi TobacNO, 

 

I asked a similar "when" question around 5 weeks.  The answers helped me settle in.  

 

for me - Those intense, junkie like cravings lasted 2-3ish days.  I was spacey and tired for a couple weeks, and vacillated between fine and easily irritated for a couple months.  I took a vacation around 5 months in and recall having zero desire to smoke.  In fact, the smell made me queasy and seeing others huddled under an awning for that last fix before climbing on the bus made me SO glad I toughed it out in the beginning.   

 

You just have to NOPE.  

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It's such an individual struggle.

 

For me, I knew at 4 months that I could succeed, if I just would stay committed and strong. It was at about 8 months that life reverted back to "normal". 

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