Because of my job, I can not be a constant presence here on EX. But I want SO much to be a postive influence and to make a difference in the lives of new Quitters!
When I first found EX (which was a completely random Google miracle), I wasn't even sure I wanted to quit yet.
And yet, here I am, a successful Quitter.
Why? Because when I came to EX, I could see that the mentors (EXperts and Elders) were people who had already achieved what I wanted to achieve: these people were ex-smokers and I was still a smoker. They had something to share. I should listen.
I accepted that. And I DID listen.
I read what they told me to read (even if it seemed stupid and simplistic; oh, how my ego had to eat some humble pie when what I read made ALL the difference in the world in my Quit!).
I did the tracking exercises offered here on EX. I learned that, even though I smugly thought I already understood my triggers (phone, car, coffee...duh), I had one MAJOR trigger that I had never before understood. (Yeah, this is a carrot; contact me if you want to know what it was! But only because it will help you believe that there are unconscious triggers that long-time smokers don't know about themselves!)
I did the separation exercises offered here on EX. Yes, I felt stupid and (I'm embarassed to admit it) superior when doing these exercises. But, holy crap. I cannot tell you how scary it was to walk out of my door on a trip to the grocery store having left my pack of cigarettes behind on the dining room table on purpose. And how incredibly empowering it felt to make that trip to the grocery store and back again without lighting up...and not dying for want of a cigarette.
Here's the thing, folks. You don't have to come here with the absolute confidence that you want to quit and that you can quit.
You DO have to come here ready to listen, read, take advice and do the work. And you DO have to be ready to say to yourself (after smoking that last cigarette) that you WANT this. That you have now made this decision to quit forever. That you are no longer TRYING, ATTEMPTING, HOPING... That you will do whatever it takes to continue to never smoke again. That you know you can do this because your addiction to nicotine is no stronger nor harder to beat that anyone else who has ever come here to EX and been successful. (Hate to say it this way, but...you're not special. Nicotine is a equal opportunity addiction.)
I WAS going to just type an introduction and then repost my blog called "Skygirl = Broken Record"...but I guess I got carried away. I think you should probably go read that blog of mine anyway, especially if you are just starting to educate yourself about what nicotine addiction does to your brain. But maybe that's just my ego telling me that I have valuable info to share...???? Hmmm...I did quit.... ;-)
And speaking of valuable information: go to whyquit.com and read the article in the upper left corner of the home page called, "Nicotine Addiction 101". Wow. Unbelievable.
xxxooo, Sky (btw, off to a long layover in San Diego on 6/22. Any EXers around??? I'm buying!)