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Always thinking about what lies ahead


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Hello guys. 

I feel ashamed and weak. Yesterday I joined this forum and introduced myself. I really wanted to quit smoking, so I jumped right in (although I knew that my preparation was faulty at the very least). 

I did not even make it through one day. The strange thing is, when I look back, it felt really good to have quit smoking. I was already proud and the cravings were not too bad. 

I am looking for things that my junky brain can easily do when a craving occurs so I can get through the craving. One thought (that cravings typically only last for about 6 minutes) was very helpful to me. I have pre-scheduled a timer to 6 minutes to hit start, whenever I think the craving is too strong. Funny thing is, at the time the timer alarm went off I was almost always surprised, because I had already forgotten the craving and the timer I had started. 

Maybe I only noticed those things yesterday, but work was crazy.

One coworker suddenly started smoking at my side. ... I stayed strong.

I was instructed to go to the tobacco shop to get something for them.  ... I stayed strong. 
But when I was outside with a coworker and he smoked one after another, I gave in.

The thing is, I had my first day at the new job, so I do not know my coworkers very well and I do not arrogate to tell them when to smoke and when not to. Also I am afraid of publicly announcing that I have quit smoking, because I have done this so many times and always failed. Especially, with the new coworkers the shame would probably be unbearable for me.

When I think back, of course the cravings were strong, but what really got me to relapse was the thought of what lies ahead of me. I had once stopped smoking for 6 months, so I know what I have to go through. 

So, is there any technique to stop myself from thinking about what is coming? 

I think the quitting process itself is not that bad. Sure, I have the cravings, but at the same time whenever I push through a craving my body somehow rewards me with intense feelings of happiness and proudness. 

 

Sure, the body goes havoc, because it is so drastically changing and repairing the damages of smoking, but it feels more like being hungover with glimpses of happiness and freedom, so I can handle that.

Again, to be clear. I think my biggest problem is thinking about what lies ahead of me. I think in 90% of my quit attempts this is what had me relapse.

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Our minds are our worst enemies..

You want to quit...to do this you have to put all your whole self in...not half in and half out...

Understand as addicts we will make any excuse to light up..

There is no miricle cure..no magic wand...you just have to go through the tough early days...

This is way we say..One Day At a Time...and do a daily NOPE.....just think about today..never mind tomorrow...

Spend the early days..reading here...have you read Allen Carr the Easy Way to stop smoking..

This book has helped millions ..alot of here too...you can read it on line...

Post ,post ,this is how you get through it ...

You ask what lies ahead...

Beautiful Freedom ..from a addiction that will kill you...eventually...sometimes quick..sometime very slow...x

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I'm sensing a bit of paralysis by analysis.  It's fine to have a plan, but even the best-laid plans are worthless without action.  Commit to never smoke again and plan accordingly as you go.

 

As for techniques to stop thinking about what is coming...there's not much point in fighting thoughts.  We have thoughts all day that we never act on or forget soon after it crosses our mind.  Smoking thoughts are no different unless you elevate them and give them power.

 

Don't fall for the complexity trap. Decide to be a non-smoker and go be it.

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While you read Allen Carr's book, you can continue to smoke.  At some point during the reading you may decide to quit, but you MUST continue reading to gain new tools in your arsenal.  Do not give up on yourself.  

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> preparation was faulty at the very least

 

There is no "preparation".

You just do it.

Preparation is merely delay-tactic and excuse.

 

> felt really good to have quit smoking.

 

But how would you know?

You didn't, in fact, quit.

 

> am looking for things that my junky brain can easily do when a craving occurs so I can get through the craving.

 

Measure a 2-mile route in your local neighborhood.

 

Buy a new pair of running shoes.

 

When the urge hits, lace 'em up and head out the door.

 

*Guaranteed* crave-killer AND you won't even think about wanting one for another 2 to 4 hours. The though of smoking after 15 to 20 minutes of consistently sucking wind and gasping for air will, literally, make you sick.

 

Double-plus bonus: you'll be coughing all that shit outta the bottom of your lungs when you stop.

 

>think my biggest problem is thinking about what lies ahead of me.

 

Then go ahead and think really hard on lung cancer, other smoking related cancers (mouth, esophageal, kidney and all the other highly correlated neoplasms) ... emphasema, COPD, heart disease ...

 

 

E Z P Z

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Sound like you may be overthinking the quitting thing Shanakor. Make no mistake about it, this quitting thing is no walk in the park although attitude and outlook can make things easier or more difficult for you. YOU have to do the hard work and in order to get that done you really have to WANT to quit or your junkie brain will make an excuse to enable you to light up again. In the early days, take things 1 minute, 1 hour at a time. Some days, you may just have to power through the tough times. Come here for support and to lend support to others often. This really helps. Lending support and sharing your journey with others really helps to strengthen your own quit. It really surprised me just how big a component of my own quit this became. Lastly, never ever be ashamed of trying to quit such a deadly addiction. It's not easy to do but very possible and so worth it once you really do it.

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I agree with Reciprocity- don't overthink it.  Quitting smoking is the simplest thing in the world- just don't do it- no matter what!  Simple, yes; easy, it depends.  As Reci said, your outlook and attitude is of paramount importance.  Take smoking off the table and don't look back.  If you're obsessively thinking about it, use your mind to your advantage and think of something else.  Anything!  You can do this, just as we all have done here.  Take what information is given to you that resonates for you, leave the rest behind.  Make the commitment and stick to it.  NTAP (Never take another puff)!

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Our own minds can be our worst enemy anything we fixate on will become an obsession whether good or bad. We can't plan our entire future sometimes I can't even plan what's for dinner and that is ok. Life would be so so boring if we had it all pre-planned. Go with some of the suggestions here. Distractions, exercise that is the biggest motivator.  I played handball on Friday and was pleasantly surprised the stamina I had  which was a good reminder why being a non smoker is better..

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We can't plan our entire future sometimes I can't even plan what's for dinner and that is ok. Life would be so so boring if we had it all pre-planned. 

 

That's the thing about plans...just when you have them all worked up, every "I" dotted and "T" crossed, life happens.  Right back to the drawing board.

 

One of the things I was most anxious about when planning my quit was being around smokers.  What was I going to do when anyone in my general vicinity lit up a cigarette?  What evasive maneuvers would I need to take?  Then a funny thing happened: I quit and found myself totally unaffected by other people smoking.  Even in the earliest days of my quit, it was never an issue for me.

 

Planning is largely hypothetical.  Experience is the greatest teacher.

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I agree with what Boo said - I have been surprised at what my reactions to certain situations would be. In reality, when I faced those situations, my reaction was completely different to what I thought it would be. On the other hand - the most dangerous situations I have faced are those that were totally unexpected. Some life situation that has come along unexpectedly and bit me in the A** and I almost caved in and lit up a smoke. That Nicodemon knows exactly when to come calling - at your weakest moment. You have to be ever vigilant :)

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I'm finding that none of this is going the way I had envisioned it.  But I am learning that it is not just a daily thing.  It's hard for me to describe.....and it depends on the circumstance I'm in.  At work it's easy to forget the whole thing.....but when I go on breaks or lunch......different story.  Then it becomes almost a moment-by-moment thing.  If you expect to make a decision.....and make a plan then have everything just fall into place, that's not going to happen.  Flexibility is key.  One thing I did notice today.  I left the building for a break.  Smokers are supposed to confine themselves to designated areas, but this guy was smoking in the parking lot.  I had to walk through his little cloud of smoke to get past him and boy did that smell good to me (sorry....it really did).  BUT, when I got in the elevator to go to my floor, the same guy was on the elevator with me.  I thought I would asphyxiate before he got off. Somehow it was FOUL when I was smelling the residue on his skin and clothes.  THAT's the smell I need to keep in the back of my mind.

 

Nobody can predict what will and will not be a trigger for you.  And when you discover your triggers, you are going to have to make a choice.  Are you going to try to stand stoic in the face of your temptation....or are you going to give yourself a break and stay away from it for a while.  It's tough.  It may mean some social sacrifices, but if going with your coworkers to stand with the while they smoke is going to tip you over the edge.......DON'T GO WITH THEM!  We are all here to help you however we can, but our ability is limited.  You are there in the moment and the choices are ultimately yours.

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I tried to prepare when I first found non-smoking communities.  It doesn't work, for me at least.  I had to watch and learn from those that quit and wish that I was where they were.  Non-smokers!  At first it was difficult but I knew it was doable because of the quitters,  they did it and so can I - a good mantra!  Yes, please just do it as some have suggested.  Have a positive attitude and really want this.  With the support of a community that understands you and had to go through the same thing as you.  It IS simple.  Don't smoke ever again.  Educate yourself on the addiction.  Read, read and read some more.  And please use the SOS forum before you light up.  We are here to help you with any trigger you may have.  Gosh, I use to smoke when on the computer and look at me now, 4 years (almost) of being smoke free and able to sit at my computer with no urge to smoke.  No triggers going off.  

 

It is very doable.  If you must look to the future, look past the withdrawals and triggers and imagine yourself as a non smoker for life!  And what a better quality of life it will be.  Get your Freedom back.  It is a wonderful thing!  Get excited about reaching your milestones as a Non-smoker!  Your body will thank you for that.   

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I think part of the problem is, while a person may superficially wish to quit, such desires are sabotaged by a lack of preparation to fully embrace the concept of change that will be experienced.

 

You literally change when you quit smoking.  

 

Your brain has to undergo some rewiring as it detoxifies from its use of nicotine.

 

If you do not commit to the changes you will face then your commitment to quit the smoking habit can be illusory.

 

P.S. It's worth it.

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