We offer what we've learned and wish we'd known, but, the willingness must be your own.
I'm going to share something you may not hear anyplace else and this is very powerful.
You don't have to want to quit smoking to quit smoking. Let that sink in. It's the absolute truth and unless you want to cling to smoking, you will succeed. Dr's tell people all the time they have to quit, and they do. A friend asked me if I would quit to influence his brother. I did. Every smoker thinks they're different, untrue. All make the same excuses.
Successful quits have to be active. You have to unlearn thinking of smoking and that means making other choices on the spur of the moment. It means planning ahead when you know you might be in a setting that would compromise your quit. In other words, waking up out of the smoking cycle and being willing to change.
Spend as much time here as you can, reading the blogs, writing your own and asking questions. Some here have many years of helping people under our belts and we are here for no other reason but to help you quit.
I smoked at least a pack a day for 40 years, much more when I was younger, so, I know how to smoke as well as anyone. I'll have been quit for 10 years this January 2. I've spent over thirty-five thousand hours on this and another site watching thousands and thousands of people try to quit.
By observing, reading, and asking questions of them, I've correlated what I believe makes both the physical addiction and the psychological addiction (habit) of smoking tick. It is a defineable process.
For those who haven't started to stop smoking, make it a game. We will teach you what you need to know and get you prepared but please, if you are having difficulty getting started, please do what is suggested in the next link. This is the simple way I began my one and only quit without anxiety or stress. It makes you think before you smoke which gets you off autopilot without freaking yourself out.
Every moment of every personal event missed to go have a smoke whether in triumph or defeat, joy or sadness is gone forever. We did not experience reality in the same context as those around us. (unless they were smokers too)
We simply were not present. We were thinking about smoking before and during those chunks of life we missed and, we just kept repeating it over and over and over and over.....
There are things we all experience to different degrees but in approximately the same timeline. I have helped many succeed and have yet to find a more rewarding or valuable way to spend my time.
You are worth it. We are here to help you succeed anytime you're decided.
Life keeps coming, good days and bad. Smoking is not required.
No Luck Is Involved. You have to do some cocooning to become a butterfly. Time Is The Healer.
"Hope" is wishing, not doing. Once you decide to quit, you can. Until then, you will flounder.
Quitting isn't about what you use or your exact plan. Quitting is about being willing. Willing to be honest with yourself. Willing to not let your emotions rule your quit, and then, willing to give yourself enough time to get over the first two humps; The first month, and the 100 days that follow.
There is no "magic" button but there is a fairly easy way to do it with understanding and the correct mindset.
Blame any physical or emotional discomfort on smoking, not quitting.
Remember, people who never smoked have good and bad daystoo.
Smoking does not make things better.
It is an illusion caused by the dopamine release nicotine causes when it hits the pleasure receptors. Nicotine has literally hijacked our brain and made it so we cannot experience pleasure in a normal way.
We want to help you get through this in the easiest possible way. You do not need to want to quit. You must however, decide to quit and then,be willing to unlearn what you've done for however many years you've smoked.
If you have had difficulty quitting in the past, you must stop doing it in the same way.
As children our favorite and most repeated question on any long road trip was, "are we there yet?" This is why I focus on what to expect and when.
What I've learned is once the nicotine is out of your system (and, even before,) it is all about approach, perserverence and simply knowing it will get better in time.
At about 3-4 weeks you will start feeling much better and think you're over it.
Watch Your Back the 100 days following your first month.
During their first 130 days is when I see most people drop the ball. No mans land cravings can come out of nowhere, and knock the quit out of you.
Don't Drop The Ball! You've already proven you don't need to smoke by making it this far. Why would you give in now?
I CHALLENGE EVERY PERSON QUITTING SMOKING TO WILLINGLY GO 130 DAYS FROM YOUR LAST PUFF AND THEN TELL ME YOUR THOUGHTS OF SMOKING ARE STILL UNMANAGEABLE.
Thomas posted a study on 8-27-12 in the following link describing the cues to smoke (craves) as being more intense in the first few months after the initial 35 days. This is ONLY a small part of the reason I focus on the first 130 days and exactly what I have described as "No Mans Land." (actually, years before Thomas discovered this link)
No Mans Land (Days 30-130 Approx. Study From Thomas Precedes)
Nicotine keeps you coming back for more while you are a smoker but long after people have quit using it, long after the pleasure receptors we sensitized to nicotine have died off, it's the memories experienced during each of those smokes and the emotions we've connected to them that make people come back to smoking. Nicotine is the physical addiction but is 10% of quitting, the habit and years of repetition (the psychological part) I consider to be 90%.
Does the patch really double your chances of quitting? The patch can help take the edge off to help you focus on working through part of the initial unlearning of the habit but it will not quit for you and it will not keep you quit.
At 6 months people who used the patch the entire suggested course of treatment went back to smoking at the same rate as everyone else.
If you are looking at using an ecig to quit smoking you may want to ask yourself what you are gaining?
If you are still getting nicotine you are still addicted to it. If you are unwilling to unlearn the psychological addiction, (The hand to mouth and inhale motion of smoking) how will you ever be free of the same thoughts as a smoker? You are simply replacing smoking with a different delivery device.
Smoking is slavery no matter how you do it. The only way to be free is to unlearn the hand to mouth and inhale motions.
The lining of your mouth absorbs nicotine from an ecig whether you inhale or not just like a cigar.
Question. Have you ever met someone who quit smoking using an ecig who is not still using an ecig?
My best suggestion I have is look in the mirror when you use it and tell me that's what you wan't people to see and judge you by.
On the double the success claim using nrt's?
"I traced this claim to a Department of Health web page, which also claimed a 15 per cent success rate at 12 months for NRT. The evidence that was supposed to demonstrate this 15 per cent success rate and the "four times more likely to quit" phenomenon was not listed in the footnotes, so I wrote to the Department to ask for it.
It took over three months to get the information
When that information was finally forthcoming, the figures showed a 6.5% quit rate for those using NRT, and a 6% quit rate for those going "cold turkey, i.e. without using NRT." So much for the "15% success rate" and "four times more likely" claims. (see following link)
Now, I've put in enough time here to know I can't save everybody. People talk themselves into smoking. It's not my fault. People put themselves in risky situations and choose to smoke. It's not my fault.
Every time people quit then choose to smoke, they break a promise to themselves and put another hole in their armor until there is no armor left.
For those of you who think you are going to do it "your way" and have one here and there along the way?
Nicotine receptors are not moral or ethical judges. They cannot be lied to. They tell your brain the last time they were fed, not you.
They are chemical receptors. They do not begin dying off permanently and become replaced by new "regular" pleasure receptors until you stop feeding them.
"If you've quit smoking and you're still smoking? You're doing it wrong."
Keep looking forward, eyes on the road. Don't get distracted, don't let go! (there's no such thing as a good slip!)
"Your Quit Will Be Yours 'Til You Don't Want It Anymore"
v v v v v Who Do You Want To Lead You Up The Mountain?v v v v v
Damage Control Not For One, But The Whole
People come on the eX, a public board, and are permitted to say anything, right or wrong, misleading or even rediculous.
As a long term quitter of tobacco and nicotine and a helper on this and another site since I quit almost 9 years ago, I imagine people who are not participating but just reading the blogs are thrown off track because someone put misinformation or a wrong attitude in someone's mind and got them thinking of a workaround to getting their fix until they do.
The Addict Mind Will Glom Onto ANY Idea That Gives Them ANY Form Of Permission To Risk Failure and, It doesn’t take much when you’re looking for a way out of the misery you are feeling, perceived or real.
Example: “They Drank All Weekend And Didn’t Smoke, SO CAN I.”
Example: “They didn’t count their “slip”, so why should I”?
When I see people post harmful ideas that may take someone down the wrong road, I feel it’s my duty to counteract these ideas and within an effective time frame. The damage is done to other readers if I wait until tomorrow so, I do it as soon as possible.
Now, in some peoples eyes, they may see it as a personal attack. It’s not my intention that it be that. I try to never directly attack a persons character (because I don’t know them.) Instead, I try to put discussion of what my objections are in my own blog post. These new quitters often attack my character (again, they don’t know me from Adam so I typically sit back and take it) They start name calling and may demand that you not post on their blog and if you do, they delete your comments. And yet, they will continue to write nasty things on your blog. I write my own blog on the topic to counteract the effect their’s may have and not have my comments deleted. Again, I always try to stay on topic and not make it personal.
Now admin in some groups doesn’t care what people put out there and will defend their right to say it. I too defend the right for people to say whatever they want and it is not my intent to belittle someone but, if I can save 10 people from taking the misinformation or wrong attitude and running directly to failure, I have been willing to take the heat for it.
Possible reactions: These people whose ideas have been questioned can go to admin of the site and complain that they are being bullied. In admin’s eyes that is a possibility so they reprimand me/us. This last time was a public reprimand. In my eyes, this crossed the line.
So, I suggest that admin look a little deeper. I suggest admin look at the whole and not giving more credence to one person who is passing out bad ideas or misinformation that might take one person or many off the path of success over someone who has spent 10 hours a day here for over 8 years watching people’s choices and seeing them fail.
This has nothing to do with how you quit, what method you choose etc. It is about planting a misinformed seed in the minds of many who may choose to water that seed and fail because of it.
That said, I’m out of here, possibly permanently. And Tommy, I built this place too. It hurts to leave but the lack of support by the administration here is mind boggling.
To the administrators of this website.....Look at the elders blogs and the timing of them. I feel what what we do here is mostly damage control. Most of our blogs are in response to what the mood of the board is or what’s being/been said. We are trying to keep people on the path to success. It isn’t any fun being attacked for doing so by peoples shortsightedness. In fact, it’s very wearingand YOUR lack of support has just worn me out.
to all my friends and those who give a damn about truth....