~~Your struggle is your strength. If you can resist becoming negative, bitter, or hopeless, in time your struggles will give you everything.~~ Bryant McGill
Sounds a little crazy, right? Struggles giving you everything? But yet it's true. And I know firsthand how true it is. About 9 or 10 years ago, I had what I would consider a breakdown. Professionals have different terminology for stuff like that but real people say things like 'nervous breakdown'. I had let things pile up in my mind for so long that my mind just couldn't handle it anymore. I couldn't stop crying, I could barely function, I was frozen but hurting badly.
I'm not sharing this for sympathy or the horror factor or even to educate you on how very important it is to take care of yourselves (although it is and I will touch on it). I'm sharing because smoking was very much a part of my breakdown. Any time I didn't want to handle life, I would smoke. And we all know that addiction allows us to push unpleasant realities into the dark corners of our minds. I recognized that my world was getting tense. My job...my relationships...my finances...everything was balancing precariously in my world, tilting my days. Instead of addressing anything, I tucked my chin down and just plowed ahead, hoping to get through the day in one piece. Too exhausted at night to think about anything, too busy during the day to take the time to figure things out.
Crash and burn. That's what happened. And smoking led to this, no doubt. My addiction pounced on my perceived flaws and weaknesses so much so that I was glad to hide behind the cigarette smoke.
Thank goodness for my lovely mind!! It crashed and burned anyway. I was at rock bottom and it was time to face life head on. And believe it or not, facing things was easier than continuing to bury my feelings and my thoughts and...well....me.
Step by step, I pulled myself up. I took time for myself. Physical activity time, sleep, downtime, gratitude time...everything I needed to fall in love with my life and to fall in love with me. I regained my balance before I quit smoking. I don't think unhealthy minds are able to quit smoking without ugly, horrible moments and I had my share of those already. So I learned to love me before I quit and that made all the difference. When you love yourself, you don't want to continue to hurt yourself in any way.
I don't mean to ramble. I just wanted to say that my struggles became my strength. I thank the good Lord didn't become bitter or negative or hopeless!! I just fell hard...and then rose again with strength. I had too much to lose by continuing to smoke so I quit. And now I continue to use my strength to get through life's tough times, sad times, uncertain times, ugly times. Because, thank heavens, there will always be those times....how else can we be reminded to cherish the good, the sweet, the love?
Find the strength within to stop smoking. Life may be tough but when you love yourself, you will get through those tough times with strength rather than with addiction. Your struggles will give you everything. I know firsthand
(Btw...no, it wasn't easy to write this today. I don't necessarily like sharing everything about myself. But if my experience can help even one smoker, I believe it is worth it. Still, it leave me a bit vulnerable and off balance. So please, as they say, take what you need and leave the rest )