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Quitters Remorse


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Overcoming Your Quitter’s Remorse.

september 20, 2012 by      cameron kellett 


If you have ever attempted to quit smoking, there is a good chance you’re familiar with the notion of quitter’s remorse. You may recognize it as the occasional feeling of regret we have over making the decision to quit smoking and cause ourselves to suffer the healing process.


It is a feeling that leads us to envy those care free smokers, happily feeding their addiction without a worry in the world.

The remorse will often come after recalling what it was like to NOT bear the struggle that comes with quitting smoking. It is a feeling that leads us to envy those care free smokers, happily feeding their addiction without a worry in the world and no commitment to live up to.

Quitter’s remorse, I would say, is one of the biggest influences for relapse outside of the chemical dependency to nicotine.



Because the junkie brain feeds off it. It uses our fear and our doubt against us. If unrecognized, quitter’s remorse can lead a quitter to forget just how utterly crap being an addict actually was.


So, how do we overcome it?


The first step is having a greater awareness. Being able to recognise your junkie brain and its remorse over quitting, enables you to actively fight against it, and in turn, overpower it. If you are mentally prepared when the junkie brain strikes, you can quickly rationalise your way to a different perspective.

Consider using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to help achieve this.


Another angle of attack is to build your quit smoking campaign around a genuine desire to live a life free from nicotine addiction; rather than the avoidance of long term health consequences.


Learn as much as you can about your addiction! Once you understand it you can believe with confidence, all those feelings of remorse will quickly pass and eventually disappear. You will come to understand those feelings of loss or nagging regrets are completely influenced by the addiction and not your rational self.


In time you will become sympathetic toward smokers, rather than envious. You will see the addict before you see the smoker.

It also pays to remind yourself that smokers are almost always envious of ex smokers. Smokers often feel helplessly trapped by their addiction and hold little hope of quitting. I remember thinking that way as an addict.


At the end of the day, if you are in the middle of a quit campaign and find yourself feeling remorseful, ask yourself, which do you want to be;

hopeful or hopeless.



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I struggled so much with this "remorse" in the first year or so of my quit.  When I smoked, the thing I hated most was the lack of convenience. I was always waiting to be able to smoke my next cigarette.  There was never a time when I could just relax because I could not get it off my mind.  Even when I was smoking I was planning the next one.  But once I had quit I was jealous of those who were still smoking.  I didn't associate smoking with what a pain in the ass it was anymore and my "memories" of smoking were as if it were the most peaceful and relaxing thing. NOT!   Some folks call this "romancing" the cigarette.  Don't be undone by these kinds of thoughts.  Smoking sucks.  There is absolutely nothing enjoyable about it.  

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Thanks for this Jenny.  Very timely for me at this time during my quit.  Not that I was going there physically but my mind wanted to me to mosey down that road and as I thought about it I just did not want the addiction to continue, this posting helped me have a stronger realization of that.

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if someone regrets quitting, they can always go back, no one is stopping them (unless they are locked up or in the hospital)


To gain freedom from smoking, one is going to have to pay some dues. Some get hit with craves early on and others (like me) it takes a few months.


Quitting smoking is easy, yes. STAYING quit is another story. Kind of how like getting motivated is easy but keeping it is hard.

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^^^ Yes JB - we are all different in how our minds react to quitting this very powerful addiction but no matter what YOU personally experience I can tell you for sure, there is no free ride or even a cheap ticket for anyone on this train. We ALL pay our fare at some point and in some way. Some make it and others fall away. There are reasons why in each case I suppose. The thing I can never understand is after having been at this for 2, 3, 4 or more months, why oh why would anyone throw all their effort away for just 1 smoke?

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