QUICK! Tell me what immediately comes to mind when I say the words, "cold turkey".
Let me guess what you are thinking... Miserable withdrawal? Endless cravings? Curling up in a dismal ball on your bed? Feeling horrible? Pacing anxiously? Wringing your hands? Snapping at everyone who crosses your path? AGONIZING?
Am I close? Are these the images you are seeing in your head? Hmm... Okay. Now, read.
Here are two ways to quit:
Method #1: You decide to quit. You get rid of your cigarettes. You gut it out. You spend your time FEELING all the effects and symptoms of the nicotine leaving your system. You feel out of control. You don't know what to do. You don't think you can make it through...because all you are doing is FEELING...without understanding it.
Method #2: You decide to quit. You educate yourself. You read about nicotine addiction and how nicotine usage has hijacked your brain receptors and your dopamine pathways. You learn exactly why your brain has told you that you LIKE and NEED smoking. You start to understand what will happen to your brain and your body when you quit. And you prepare for those emotions and physical symptoms by planning how to handle them when they occur. You get a support system of friends, family and EX in place. THEN you get rid of your cigarettes. And when urges to smoke hit you, you are able to step outside of them emotionally and see them for what they are...making them much easier to deal with.
Gee. One of these methods is cold turkey. The other is smart turkey. Not hard to tell the difference, is it?
Oh, what about nicotine replacement therapies? They have their place. But only if you understand that there is no commercial NRT in the entire world that will do your quitting FOR you.
Your BRAIN is the biggest, best nicotine replacement therapy available to you. Use your brain to make the decision to quit, to commit to that decision and to honor your commitment every single day.
Then, if it helps you, use NRT to take the edge off during your early Quit. An NRT that you use temporarily to help you quit smoking forever is great. Just don't substitute one way of using nicotine for another!
Smart turkeys are more likely to join that small percentage of forever quitters. Be a smart turkey. Gobble, gobble.