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stAn3 Blog

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Day 1 in new city

Posted by stAn3 Aug 28, 2019

I moved into my apartment today. I had some smoking thoughts, even a craving. I did not smoke. I told on myself. I identified the trigger (caffeine and dry mouth). I took action. Now I am checking in with you guys. I’m still committed to my quit. I think I’ll get another day smoke-free. I don’t want to go back to Day 1. I’m almost to Day 400.


8/19 checkin

Posted by stAn3 Aug 19, 2019

I have an apartment. I have most of my finances in order for school. My worst fear did not materialize. I don’t have to work full time while in school. Im surprised how easy it has been.


I have had a few smoking urges. I’m still committed to taking action to prevent a return to smoking. That’s why I’m here posting. I’m not as afraid as I was. I’m hopeful about my ability to stay smoke free in the future.


8/5/19 check in

Posted by stAn3 Aug 5, 2019

I have had thoughts of wanting to smoke. They are not strong cravings but these thoughts worry me nonetheless. I am worried about graduate school. I need a place to stay. I don’t know my schedule. I don’t know about my financial aid. Everything’s up I’m the air. I have a feeling I am going to have to work full time while I’m in school. I don’t wont to do that. I am tired because I have worked everyday since July 15th. It’s starting to get to me. I anticipate being tired like this all the time once I start school. That’s what led me to relapse more than once in the past. I am trying to strike a balance. I don’t want to neglect my recovery from nicotine addiction by fighting my addiction on my own using willpower. That’s why I’m checking in about cravings and being mindful of triggers. At the same time, I don’t want to psych myself out by focusing on the challenges I have. My addiction will tell me I have to smoke, that I can’t make it. That’s a lie. I have a choice. I am making the right choice today by checking in, praying, and consciously finding other ways to deal with the stress. I haven’t exercised in a week so I am going to do that today as well. It helps me clear my mind and think straight.


7-13 check in

Posted by stAn3 Jul 13, 2019

I had a good day today. I drank my water. I walked. I avoided sugary drinks. I prayed. I went to a meeting. It was a new meeting. I felt intimidated. But I shared. I am picking my battles right now 


I get overwhelmed when I think of fighting all my addictions. I realized that I judge my well being by my actions. I am a human doing, not a human being. Although I would like to be “perfect”, always making the right decisions, perfection is not an option. So I decided to “easy does it” and “first things first”. The most important thing for me to do right now is not smoke. I will have to be forgiving of myself in other goals I have.


Ironically when I give myself permission to fail, I am able to do healthy things in the moment. “One day at a time” and “Here and Now” take on real meaning for me today.


i got another day smoke free. I am doing what I need to do to protect my quit.


7/9/2019 check in

Posted by stAn3 Jul 9, 2019

I’ve been having more smoking thoughts, urges to smoke. So I’m participating more in the community. In the past, I always failed to do the maintenance. I would try to handle it on my own, not tell anybody. I relied on the smoke-free days I already accumulated. This gave me a false sense of comfort.


i am getting close to some big changes, positive changes. I start a new job on Monday. In a month, I will be free of my current company. I don’t hate the job I have now. Nor do I hate my current employer. It just no longer benefits me to work there so I’m moving on. Because I have stuck it out, I can possibly come back to this company in the future. I’m proud of myself for that.


I’m starting grad school in about a month. This is a no-matter-what situation for me because I have relapsed multiple times, using school stress as an excuse. I know I will be triggered once school starts. I also know I can come to this site and treat my disease.


 I’m overwhelmed thinking about the future and the changes I need to make. At times I want to ignore everything and just run and hide. Sometimes I do run and hide by just laying in bed all day and not talking to anyone.


Today I’m being proactive. I take smoking thoughts seriously. I am heavier now than I have ever been in my life. The doctor told me to walk two miles five days a week and to quit drinking sugary drinks. He told me to drink plenty of water. I balked at first. I don’t want to add losing weight to the goals I already have. I don’t want to add more behaviors to the list of things I have to change. But today, I made a decision to do it. I’m planning how I’m going to get my two miles in tomorrow. I’m drinking water and avoiding sugary drinks. I don’t want to quit smoking, then die of inactivity and a poor diet. I want to live and enjoy my life, not suffer from avoidable illness.


So fear is what I feel when I think of the future. Anger is what I feel when I think of mistakes I’ve made. Excitement is what I feel when I think about July 30th because it will make a year of not smoking.


I think that’s all I have to check in right now.


June 8th check in

Posted by stAn3 Jun 8, 2019

I think of smoking less frequently. But I had an urge earlier this morning. I’m happy that most days I don’t think about smoking. I don’t know what triggered the thought. I know that I am going to keep reaching out when the thoughts come instead of smoking. Thanks for being here.


300 days

Posted by stAn3 May 28, 2019

I’m responding to the challenge.


After countless relapsed, I have 10 months not smoking. I’ve been having thoughts of wanting to smoke every day. They are not strong urges but all it takes is one moment of weakness to start the habit again.


i am grateful for my time not smoking but I know it is a one day at s time thing. I’m never cured. If I want to stay smoke free I am going to have to make an effort.


This time of year seems to be a problem for me. I got clean on June 1st. When my clean date approaches I start getting urges to use, drink, do other stuff that is addictive. I am staying aware of these urges and sharing with others about them. I know they will go away as long as I don’t use. I want to get a year of not smoking, then another year.


i will start grad school I’m the fall. I’m the past I let my fears of grad school be an excuse to smoke. It’s not happening this time. I’m prepared. I have no excuses for smoking. Not One Puff Ever. It gets much easier with time. The more time I get not smoking, the more challenges I go through without smoking, the stronger my recovery gets.


i had another job change and I’m struggling with it. I’m bored. I have not thought of smoking to deal with the job change. That’s another positive change for me, a sign of growth.


Six months

Posted by stAn3 Feb 2, 2019

I’m I recently got notified by the site that I have six months. That’s more time than I have had in years! I rarely think of smoking. The other day I thought of it because I was stressed. I was stressed because of work, and conflicts with co-workers. I remembered checking in everyday on this website and recalled that I no longer checked in here about my feelings. I decided to put my recovery toolbox to use. I prayed. I took a deep breath. I reached out to someone to talk about my feelings. The thought of smoking remained a passing thought. It did not become a strong craving. I got through it.


Thanks to the emails and for the people who message me to see if I’m okay. They remind to keep coming to this site.


i am confident today because I am not confused about the chronic nature of this addiction and my need to stay connected to this site. Before I wasn’t willing to work on not smoking for long term. I’d do intense work for a few weeks to break the habit. Stop doing any work. Then relapse a few months later. I’m not as focused as I was in the beginning but I still check this site and plan to keep doing it—especially when I notice the old thinking coming back. Recovery is an ongoing process.  It never ends. 



Posted by stAn3 Jan 6, 2019

I’m still smoke free. I sometimes think of smoking. I don’t have cravings. My job change was not as stressful as I anticipated. In fact. my stress is greatly reduced.

My ex and I have been in communication for the past three weeks. I am currently feeling some feelings about us not dating anymore. It is not something I thought about smoking to deal with. This is a blessing—freedom from my addiction.



Posted by stAn3 Dec 4, 2018

I got news about work. I am going to a different location. I feel triggered to smoke. I anticipate a lot of stress because of the change. I will miss my coworkers. I know it’s a good move. I’ve been wanting a change. I am scared because every big change for me in the past has led to relapse. I’m paying more attention this time to prevent a recurrence.


i am back in contact with my ex-girlfriend. I’m waiting to see how it turns out. I am acting different. She is acting different. I don’t know if I want to get back together or not. I don’t know how close I want to be to her. I feel like I’m playing myself sometimes. I can’t move on if I spend too much time with her. This move to a different location will help with that. We won’t see each other all the time because we’ll be working at different locations.


Glad to still be a member of the site. I will reach out more during this period of transition.



Posted by stAn3 Nov 19, 2018

I had a good day at work today. I feared I wouldn’t be able to handle it because I have been worn down by negativity. I did my job. I felt joy. I noticed how good I am at my job. I marveled at the fact that God was able to use me. I was set free of my self-pity. 


I processed what what to do about my resentments and decided to do nothing, except try to work with the new people that have been hired. I still feel the same way about some of my coworkers but I didn’t obsess over it for long today. I gave myself five minutes to be angry then let it go. For some reason, I am not as concerned about the outcome with this hiring decision. I am looking elsewhere for employment (meaning I am researching what’s out there) but I will not jump ship. I have hope that things will get better.


Today I didn’t have that strong pull to escape. I thought of smoking when I was around people smoking, but the thoughts are not strong enough for me to call them cravings.



Posted by stAn3 Nov 17, 2018

I feel okay. I dread going to work tomorrow, yet I look forward to it as well. I enjoy working with the patients. I am angry, no, not trusting, of my supervisors or the company. I had a revolution a few days ago that there is nothing I can do to stop the chaos that is going on at my job right now. I blame my direct supervisor and the executive director and the corporate leadership for not fixing things. I am angry because so many of my co-workers are gone. I blame them for not making the job more attractive. I don't want to get to know the new people, and I don't want to work with the new people. There is one person at work who I absolutely can't stand. I am mad at my supervisor because he wants me to work with this person. I want this person gone and can't understand why this person is still working for the company. I expect the company to exploit my stepmother. If they do, I'm gone. The tension from waiting to see how this plays out is killing me. I get angry over every mistake this person makes. I get angry because the leadership doesn't seem to be as angry as me about this person's poor performance. I have lost hope that things will get better. Yet I still have to go to work there anyway. I have a decision to make about whether I want to stay or go. My options are not good, like jumping out of the frying pan into the skillet, but I am tired to the stress that comes from all the chaos, and I feel put upon by management because, not only do I not have the support I need to do my job, I'm expected to do other people's jobs as well. I keep doing the other people's jobs because I want the clients not to suffer but I feel like a punk, like a martyr. On top of that, I didn't get my promised bonus or pay raise. I'm trying to give the company as little as possible now (doing my job and nothing more) instead of looking out for the best interests of the company. I feel betrayed. There is a loss of trust. I knew when I came to work for this company that is was messed up, but I trusted my direct supervisor, so I took the job. Now I don't have that trust. I don't trust his judgment. Because I don't trust his judgment, I don't feel like I have any reason to stay there. I have a history of changing jobs right about this time (when I get used to the job). I've spoken to my sponsor about it and he said to do a pros/cons list before taking action. I struggle to find the motivation to stay even though I know it's the best thing for me financially, and I know the other treatment centers aren't much better. I need to talk to my supervisor but don't know how to go about it. Writing about it makes me feel a little bit better. The pressure of all these feelings has been making me want to escape. I've even thought about smoking. Instead I've been escaping in other ways. I generally just don't feel good about myself or my life. I think my depression is affecting me. I don't feel the overwhelming sadness but my thinking is negative and I don't feel motivated. I'm also more irritable and snappy.


So just to recap: I'm disappointed because I didn't get my bonus and feeling really paranoid about it, like they aren't going to give it to me. I'm also angry about it because I made plans based on anticipating that bonus. I'm struggling to make it until next payday when I thought I would be spending that bonus money. I am paranoid, thinking the accountant is holding back my bonus because she is friends with my ex-girlfriend and doesn't like me.

I want my stepmom to get a job, but I'm afraid they won't give it to her. I'm afraid it won't happen because they hired her before, then told her she didn't get the job. I also see them hiring her at a lower position than what she is qualified for. If they do that, I will be forced to quit. Family comes before any job. I can't stay at a place that hurts my stepmother.

I want her to get the job because I think she can fix all the chaos and drama, but I've recently realized that the problem is much deeper than anything she can fix. It is a company-wide problem. Even if she gets the job that I want her to have, my job will still be difficult. I am being self-centered, self-seeking, dishonest, and manipulative. Also I lack trust. I'm having a hard time letting go of the outcome that I want. It's all about me and my comfort and not what's best for all involved. Because I see that it is impossible for me to get what I want, I am throwing a fit. I want to retaliate against the company by quitting. I also anticipate endless months of the same bull that I have been going through for the past several months. I need to talk to my sponsor more about this. It's obvious quitting my job is not the right thing to do at this time (maybe later if things get worse) but I need to talk to somebody about how I feel regarding the work conditions because it will negatively affect my work with the patients if I keep these feelings bottled up inside of me.


If you've read all of this: Thanks!  I am grateful to be smoke-free. I've relapsed more than once because of wanting to escape the stress of this job. I can't do it anymore. No matter what, smoking is not going to fix anything. It would only make things worse. I'm glad to be a part of the becomeanex community. I look forward to the time when I won't be as triggered by stress. It only comes with not smoking, one day at a time.



Posted by stAn3 Oct 28, 2018

The last 24 hours have been weird. I was in triggering situations and, of course, I wanted to smoke at some point today. I’m around people smoking all day when I’m at work. It doesn’t really phase me, but last night I was out with friends who pulled out cigarettes and smoked. I forgot my charger so my phone died, couldn’t reach out for support. They also drank. I’m in recovery so I don’t like being around people drinking. This morning I helped a family friend move. She’s a smoker and everything smelled like smoke. I still didn’t have my phone. Instead of reaching out to people, I prayed. I reaffirmed my decision not to smoke, no matter what. The craving passed. It helped that I was with my dad. He’s a former smoker. I figured I could talk to him about it if necessary. I didn’t have to. After I prayed it went away. Last night taught me that it is my decision to stay smoke-free, and it is my decision to not drink when cigarettes or alcohol are around. I simply have to remind myself of my commitment to recovery and use the recovery tools at my disposal. Sometimes your phone dies unexpectedly and you can’t call someone. You gotta take your recovery with you everywhere. I’m going to try to make sure I keep my phone charged. I don’t want a repeat of the last 24 hours. I figure it’s better to reach out for support than try to do recovery alone. Nevertheless it feels good to know I can survive a triggering situation without instant access to the members of my support group. I didn’t use the phone dying last night as an excuse to smoke or relapse on alcohol. No matter what means no matter what. I’m grateful for my recovery and the fact that I’m embracing the philosophy of N.O.P.E. Not One Puff Ever.



Posted by stAn3 Oct 20, 2018

I can’t remember the last time I felt the need to check in with you guys to keep from smoking. I still try to get on the site everyday. I don’t want to get too far away from this site. I’ve always slipped up during the maintenance phase of recovery, after I’ve broken the habit. I don’t crave cigarettes. I think at the end of the day, “Wow! I haven’t thought about smoking today. When was the last time I thought about smoking?” I’m grateful to be home, as the guy from would say. I appreciate my becomeanex family. I’m glad to see other people staying smoke free as well.



Posted by stAn3 Oct 12, 2018

I am stressed about work. I got an ungodly amount of work to do. I used to smoke to escape the stress. I thought about smoking briefly then I remembered that I have options when I get anxious. I took a deep breath, then started working. This is a rare occurrence and I’ll get through it. I’m grateful to be smoke free and nicotIne free. I’m grateful to be still coming to this site.