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Romancing the cigarette was a big issue last time


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So I'm concentrating on reading and listening to videos on the subject. Any thoughts on what helped you in this respect would be appreciated. When you found your mind drifting into the danger zone how did you redirect your thoughts?

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Distraction was definitely a key element. I also used a rubber band on my wrist for awhile. Everytime I would get that type of thought, I would ping it, as hard as I could. That thought soon popped out of my head. ;)

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Nancy mentioned movement.  Great advice.  Most of the time,  just walking around a bit did the job for me.  Other times I would do push-ups or squats to exhaustion.  Movement is medicine and will banish any smoking thoughts as quickly as anything.

 

When the thoughts of "just one" entered my mind, I made it a point to dispel that myth.  I reminded myself that the one will be followed by another and another.  One turns into a pack.  A pack turns into a carton.  And so on.  I knew if I smoked one, I might as well commit to the thousands that follow.

 

Of course if it's redirection you're looking for, the Quit Train runs 24/7.  One night I came here to read a few articles and watch a video and ended up in a marathon bout of Chicks and Sticks.  I totally forgot about the confrontational thoughts I was having in regards to my quit.

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Repeating smoking is NOT on the table...

Talking to myself...why its not...

Romancing I have my two feet far out weighs romancing a smoke...

I made a choice...feet or smoke...my feet won...nothing romantic about being in a wheel chair...

Keep busy...jigsaws...games...chill colouring books...learn to knit...DD did this...it helped so much..

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My two cents.  Reign in your imaginings and visualizations.  

 

For instance you may find yourself considering how easy it would be to stop by the corner store after work and pick up a pack of smokes.  

 

Nobody would know.  You could take a couple puffs and take the edge off.  On a cold day the nicotine would hit you like a warm breeze and-

 

...and your romancing the cigarette.    

 

Learn to detect when your mind is wandering off into negative territory and squash the day dream before it gets started.

 

Visualization is the first step in making something possible.  Don't visualize buying smokes, bumming smokes, or smoking smokes.

 

Yes, I realize this is a lot like telling people not to imagine a pink elephant.

 

If smoking is the pink elephant then you need to imagine a plaid unicorn, or whatever.  You get the idea.

 

Reduce your desire for a cigarette into a small child having a tantrum.  Reassure the child that it will be okay.

 

There are many ways to deal with visualizations.  Enjoy the journey of discovery. 

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Sunnyside, I actually did have a rubber band on my wrist last time. Doreen I  forgot about my coloring book, I love to color! It's an adult one that I bought right before having my knee replaced,I'll do that too, great tip! Boo, ah yes...the dreaded pushups that I am supposed to be doing every day to be able to pull my bow(archery) back again more easily :)

I did watch a great video Joel has today about thinking of having "just one" there is no such thing as just one, just as for me there is no such thing as just one cold beer etc... if and when I start thinking just one, from now on I'm going to think "the big picture" which is thousands of cigs smoked and thousands of dollars spent and hours and hours of wasting time by poisoning the very body the creator blessed me with. I feel like a social creep smoking out in public these days. Tired of feeling that way.

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Sirius  YES!!!! That is exactly what I'm talking about...I need to "learn to detect when your mind is wandering off into negative territory and squash the daydream before it gets started" .

So at the first little inkling when I start to get that stinkin thinkin, I need to STOP IT, and get my brain refocused. Thank you also.

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I did breathing exercises. When a craving hit, I would take a long drag of air (almost as if taking a hit), hold it in a few seconds and then slowly blow it out. Almost as if I was smoking an imaginary cig. When it would catch in my chest and I held it in a second, it gave a relaxing sensation similar to taking a hit. I would think things about breathing in clean, fresh air instead of nasty, grey, smelly smokey air.

 

I don't know, It was likely all in my head and anyone who saw me probably thought I was nuts but it worked for me.

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Not all in your head at all, those are breathing exercises to relax:) I do those sometimes when trying to fall asleep at night. My body is tired but my mind keeps on going :blink:

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So I'm concentrating on reading and listening to videos on the subject. Any thoughts on what helped you in this respect would be appreciated. When you found your mind drifting into the danger zone how did you redirect your thoughts?

A change in habits. When you find your self thinking about a cig, grab some gum, a cookie, or a big glass of water. Cravings only last as long as the flavor in a stick of gum, a couple of cookies or by the time you drink a big glass of water, cravings are gone.

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I lean toward being a no nonsense kinda person so the 'get real, call bs on my drama' method worked with me.  If I ever had a lingering thought, I would recall how I felt and what I was thinking the moment that I snuffed out that barely lit, last cigarette.  I knew I didn't want to go back to feeling that way.  I do recall getting pretty impatient with the healing process.  I wanted to feel like one does at a year quit but I was only at 5 weeks and I remember Nancy saying oh so gently...you have a ways to go my dear.  It helped.

 

Romance is great.  Just not with a suffocating, reaking nail of death.

 

Cheery eh?

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All the advice is great here.  Personally I did whatever I could, including jumping jacks around the house. I tried to keep busy and stay out of the house. I also tried to like tea so I would have something to do at work during breaks. When I was around people, I would talk to them about how I was feeling.  I even discussed quitting smoking with the people working in the stores that I frequented. I knew all of the bad feelings were temporary. I looked at all the people I knew who had quit and they seemed to be walking around enjoying life without smoking. Rationally, I knew that if they felt normal, I would feel normal too. 

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Have you made a decision Karen? It's great to see you sticking to the board and I saw you bought some gum. Have you thrown away the cigs? It doesn't matter if you choose NRT or chantix or Cold turkey. It just matters that you quit. I can see that you want to because you have stayed here instead of disappearing.

 

Here's to you getting back on the train. X

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Boo, ah yes...the dreaded pushups that I am supposed to be doing every day to be able to pull my bow(archery) back again more easily :)

 

I had no idea you were into archery Karen.  I'm not going to suggest that you nock on an arrow anytime you want a cigarette as I recognize that isn't feasible.  However, any activity that demands focus and forces you to shut out the external noise and internal chatter provides a sense of calm.  I do quite a bit of skeet and clay shooting and notice that things just seem to make more sense after some time on the range.

 

If you still have a pack of cigarettes lying around, you should put a broadhead through it.  It's a perfect target.

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I had to be utterly brutal with myself.

 

The fleeting thoughts I dealt with via distraction. But the biggies sent me flying to whyquit to read a story of a smoker who'd died, Id try and think how I would tell everyone around me if that were me and how stupid I'd feel for poisoning myself. I'd replace the visualisation with those I cared for (mainly my kids) smoking, how would I really feel if I made that seem ok?!  At times I went into battle in my own brain but I was as tough as I needed to be to quench the stupid thoughts that would lead me back down that path.  Sharing as you asked.

 

x

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