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Thomas3.20.2010

Diversity

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Aug 14, 2015

The United States of America was built by a diverse group of people. The strength, resilience, and richness of the United States of America are based on the diversity of its citizens. Everyone is equal in worth, and is entitled to the same privileges and opportunities regardless of their age, national origin, disability, gender, or race. Each of us has our own unique background and talents.

Diversity creates a Community that is enriched with people from different cultures and that have different experiences, lifestyles, backgrounds, perspectives, and ideas. A diverse Community:

·         recognizes and values talent.

·         eliminates barriers and ensures that all members are treated fairly and have the chance to reach their maximum potential.

·         encourages the exchange of ideas which not only broadens the scope of problem solving, but also improves the possibility that the problems will be solved.

 

 

Ours is a Diverse Community and that's an integral aspect of what makes it so effective in achieving SUCCESS!!! We don't always see eye to eye but we have RESPECT for each other!

 I don't always agree with "tough love" and I don't always agree with moddly coddling, either!

 Each contact I have with a new member is based on my own experience. I bring to the table my diagnosis of COPD (even when I don't mention it!), my SUCCESS, my personality! It can hardly be otherwise.

 It's for the Newbie to take what is useful to them and leave the rest from all the comments and advice they receive!

I disagree that there are any few people in control of what goes on here! The Elders are no more significant than any other member. We have our unique personalities, motivations, ways and means of Extending support to others. We all have equal opportunity to add our own input.

 I've seen many, many, members come and go, some drifting in and out. It's only natural that we are drawn to some members more than others. And time online is a commodity.

 I most often center on folks with COPD and then on other members who I feel are open to the Fantastic Change which is necessary to become a true EX.

That's because my quits in the past have been for Months even Years but not sincere! I was just borrowing time, "cleaning out my lungs so I can smoke some more!" So I know the difference! I Know that's just not good enough!

You bring your own talents, experience and personality to your Comments! Each of us contributes something that may help that individual make the ultimate decision - to live addiction FREE!

 I would like to remind you so you don't get depressed that as you see folks come and go, remember that you have no idea how many mustard seeds you are planting on the way! Maybe that person will come back later or maybe somebody else read that Comment to So-and-So and took it to heart!

 I think we'd all be surprised at how many people are lurking, reading everything but choose to remain out of the limelight!

Finally, contribute what you have and respect that other contributor, too! We all make this Community a Great Place to be and most important SUCCESSFUL!

~~And suddenly you know:  It's time to start something new and trust in the magic of beginnings.~~  Meister Eckhart

 

I know you're out there.....reading blogs, rummaging through forums, wondering about Allen Carr.  You are hesitant to say anything here....maybe because it will make quitting real, maybe you don't want to commit yourself, or maybe you just don't know how to navigate this site.  I know you're there though.

Because I used to be you.  I was hesitant, I didn't want to commit myself to quitting, and I definitely didn't know how to nagivate anything :)  Yep, I was there.  Right where you are now.  You may be looking at these quit dates thinking you will never be able to make 600 days or even 100 days.  You may be thinking that no one knows how hard your life is.  How difficult it will be for you to be without cigarettes.  Guess what?  Been there as well.

But now I know better.  And so will you!  You will finally realize that it's ok to trust in yourself....to trust in the magic of beginnings.  And you will know it's better to jump right in rather than stick a toe in here and there.  And you will find out that it doesn't have to be this HUGE weight around your neck.  And you will learn so much more about all the good in you....the strength, the courage, the humor, the sheer brilliance of you....than you ever know existed.

And then, one day, you will be writing these words to those out there reading, rummaging, and wondering.  And you will give them hope.  And you will give them knowledge.  And you will share your joy with them.  Because you used to be them.  And as you write these words, you will be smiling because you know.....you trusted in the magic of beginnings.

Hugs,

Sheri

Early one evening, during my recent hospital stay, I was sitting on the edge of my bed and enjoying some rare solitude! In a hospital they alway seem be in and out! I am not sure they want you to have any time to just think! My thoughts were barely broken by the lady from housekeeping! Of course I spoke, then went back to my thoughts while she cleaned the bathroom, emptied the trash, and used a wet mop on the floor! It was the same one she just used in the bathroom!

 

A lot of you know that I have a little rebel in me, so during my stay, for the most part, I was able to get away from wearing those color coded socks that they make you wear so everyone knows what kind of fall risk you are! So I am sitting on the bed barefoot, and as soon as the entire floor gets wet, my bladder says "Hey dad. It is time to empty me!". Of course!

 

Now, I dont want to get up and find my flip-flops, which, without a doubt, have been pushed under the bed with a wet mop! I am determined not to put on those damn socks! And, I am not going to walk barefoot through whatever the hell she had on that mop! If it is strong enough to clean floors in a hospital, I have no doubt that it will eat my feet to the ankles before I can make it to the bathroom door! So there is only one thing left to do!

 

I just sat on my bed and watched the floor dry! I have never really done that before, but I learned something! The whole floor does not go from wet, to damp, to dry! It dries in streaks! And that reminded me of the cravings that come after our quits! We don't go from craving a lot, to craving a less, to no craving at all! Cravings are like those streaks on the floor! They are drying up! Some streaks are longer than others! Some are wider than others! But if you just refuse to do anything to disrupt the process, the longer ones get shorter, the wide ones get narrower! Then some of them are gone! Then all of them are gone! I did nothing! I did not fan the sheets to try to hurry the process! I just sat there and watched!

 

The same thing applies to cravings! Acknowledge them, but do nothing! Sit still, and watch them! If you do nothing at all, the long ones will get shorther! The wider ones will narrow! Then some will be gone! Then all will be gone! Just do nothing! You do not have to try to make them go away! As  long as you do nothing they will go away! It is a natural thing! Just like a wet floor drying! Just sit still, and let time fix it for you!

 

If you should have a giant craving, and you just feel like you can't sit still, I suggest you mop the floor! Then watch it dry! Your craving will be gone, and your floor will be clean! WIN/WIN

 

Hope this make sense to someone besides me! If not I have an EXcuse! I am using drugs! (the ones that doctors said use)         Tommy

These are word you hear on a regular basis from me! They come from a blog I wrote about 65 days into my quit! I am going to re-post a portion of that blog here today! I hope there is motivation in this for all who seek it!:

As I read the various blogs I find everyone looking for just a little more than help with kicking a nasty addiction. There are loud screams and soft cries from people with varing levels of despiration. Today I would like to share with you two stories that I have encountered that demonstrate FOCUS and DETERMINATION.

The first is about a lady named Trudy. In 1925 she dreamed of becoming the first woman and only the sixth person to swim the English Channel. She made her plans until the day she set out in pea soup fog to make her dream a reality. She swam with all she had for as long as she could, but finally had to give up. She was pulled aboard a boat and later discovered she was only 1/4 of a mile from the shore. She realized that she could have made it if she had known how close she was. Her attempt to live her dream was crushed because she could not see how close she was. In 1926 Gertrude Ederle went back on a clear day and became the first woman to swin the English Channel. This time she could see her goal. Her ability to focus on the shore helped her reach dream. And she did it more that 2 hours faster than any of the men who preceded her.

My second story is about a man more well known. His name is Sir Edmund Hillary, The first man to reach the summit of Mt. Everrest. Most know his fame for this accomplishment, few know it was his second attempt. His first attempt was a failure. But the man was determined. Two months after his failure while giving a speech at the base of Mt.Everrest, Sir Edmund Hillary shook his fist at the mountain and proclaimed " I will get you next time, you are as big as you will ever be, but I am not done growing!" The rest is history.

So, with the Focus of Ederle, and the Determination of Hillary, we shall pledge another day to be SmokeFree and move a step closer to FREEDOM!                                     Tommy

The minute we decide to quit smoking our Addictive Minds crank up into full gear. They have one simple objective – OUR NEXT FIX! They may look very different but the goal is always the same. How long they pester your quit journey depends on YOU!

 

Some folks refer to Addictive Minds as Nicodemons but they’re really only speaking of a part of themselves.

 

 Addictive Thoughts are often referred to as cravings. I personally like to reframe the word craving as Addictive Thought because it has less power over me. Craving seems somehow relentless, irresistible, undeniable.

 

Addictive thought sounds like what it is – just a thought and I get to decide to obey the thought or diss it – kick it to the curb!

 

Fusion is a blending or melding together of a thought and the thing it refers to –the story and the event. For Example, “I want a cigarette” or “I’m going to relapse.”

 

In a state of fusion, it seems as if:

 

*Thoughts are reality

 

*Thoughts are the truth

 

*Thoughts are important

 

*Thoughts are orders

 

*Thoughts are wise

 

*Thoughts can be threats

 

Defusion allows us to relate to thoughts in a new way, so they have much less impact and influence.

 

Become the witness to your thoughts. Examine them with kindness and curiosity.

 

Here are some ways to defuse your thoughts:

 

(1)    Take the statement “ I want a cigarette.” Now say it this way out loud, “I’m having the thought that I want a cigarette.”

 

Now make the statement, “I notice that I’m having the thought that I want a cigarette.”

 

It feels a lot less loaded, doesn’t it?

 

image

 

(2)    Now take the same thought and sing it to the tune of Happy Birthday.

 

“I want a cigarette right now!

 

I want a cigarette right now!

 

I want a cigarette, I want a cigarette!

 

I want a cigarette right now!”

 

That one always makes me laugh out loud!

 

image

 

(3)    Give your craving a name:  “Here comes the ol’” I gotta have a cigarette” story, again!"

 

You’ll begin to recognize that your thoughts are just that – a story!

 

 

(4)    Rename the object or event: “I want a dead leaf wrapped in paper and dipped into 7000 deadly chemicals.”

 

I like the short version: “I want a sickerette.” Sounds pretty ridiculous, right?

 

 

(5)    Thank your Mind: “Thank You, Mind, for reminding me how much I want to be Free from Addiction.

 

Addictive Thoughts (cravings, remember?) remind us that we’re in the healing process of a very challenging Addiction.

 

image

 

(6)    The Funny Voice Technique:  Pick an animated cartoon character such as Mickey Mouse, Shrek, or Homer Simpson. Hear the character say the thought that’s bothering you.

 

My favorite is Daffy Duck!

 

Notice that you haven’t tried to change the thought, get rid of it, argue with it, push it away, debate with it , distract from it or replace it.

 

You have merely seen it for what it is: a string of words passing through your head. When you defuse your Addictive Thoughts, you recognize that:

 

*Thoughts are merely sounds, words, stories, or bits of language.

 

*Thoughts may or may not be true; we don’t have to automatically believe them.

 

*Thoughts may or may not be important. We can choose to pay attention only if they’re helpful.

 

*Thoughts are definitely not orders; we certainly don’t have to obey them.

 

*Thoughts may or may not be wise.

 

*Thoughts are never threats – they can’t make me smoke!

 

 

 

So how can you tell whether a thought is an Addictive Thought? If you’re not sure, you can ask yourself:

 

*Does it help me to become the person I want to be?

 

*Does it help me to build the sort of relationships I’d like in my life?

 

*Does it help me to connect with what I truly value?

 

*Does it help me, in the long term, to create a rich, full, and meaningful life?

 

OR

 

Does it lead me right back into the Addiction I’ve been trying so hard to let go of?

 

Defuse from your Addictive Thoughts and you’ll have more of an opportunity for Freedom from being driven by them. You’ll get control of your own steering wheel for a change!

 

[Resource: The Happiness Trap by Russ Harris]

elvan

OUR crazy quilt

Posted by elvan Apr 27, 2014

Become an Ex is a lot like a crazy quilt.  My understanding of a crazy quilt is that is it all kinds of different fabrics sewn together into a quilt, not necessarily in any sort of pattern.  It CAN be in a pattern or it can just be randomly put together.  I think that pretty much describes all of us and how we are “sewn” together randomly.  Each piece is different and some pieces are bigger than others, some are older and more frayed, some are almost new looking.  There are pieces of silk, wool, velvet, denim, camo, madras plaid, polka dots, bright colors, dark colors, fancy lace, dotted swiss, pastels, and nearly invisible colors.  There is virtually every kind of fabric that exists in this quilt and every shape and every size you can imagine.  When a piece of the quilt is torn off or falls off, there is always another piece of fabric that can replace it.  It’s never going to be exactly the same, but there will always be another piece.   The quilt, like, Becomeanex.org will grow and grow and will remain intact and will become stronger, impenetrable in a way.  The quilt will be there to throw over the shoulders of someone who is struggling; it will be there to comfort and to celebrate.  Think of yourself as a piece of this quilt and hang on, be ready for challenges and be ready for celebrations.  Be ready to hold someone else on so they won’t be the missing piece of fabric, let’s all put this quilt together and make sure it is there when one of us needs it.  It’s pretty big and it can cover a whole bunch of people at one time.  You can be covered by it or lay on it and just feel its strength and its diversity…think about what kind of fabric you are. I am a pretty worn piece of denim but I am also pretty strong, all things considered.  I would like to be covered and comforted by those velvet and silk pieces, or maybe just a worn out tee shirt. The quilt is within your reach, always, but you have to be smoke free, there will be no smell of smoke on this quilt, there will be no burn holes in it.  The fabric may not be perfect because of previous damage but there will be no future damage.  Cover yourself with the quilt or lay down on it in the sunlight or make it into a magic carpet and go for a ride.  You choose what to do with it as long as you hang on.

Have you "tried your best to fight the craves and can't seem to win?" Are you sitting there scratching your head about what went wrong and feeling like you can "never win?" I'll tell you something I learned Thanks to the Elders who helped me launch the adventure of my lifetime - Smoke FREE Living! 

I came here like most of us not knowing anything about Nicotine Addiction and was told to read and I did! It really helped but there was this guy who I thought was goofy (Thank Goodness I now know that he was spot on!) His name is James and his moniker is the Happy Quitter! ....Say what? what's there to be happy about? Strong, yes! Determined, yes! Stubborn, fierce, a fighter! But happy??? As I thought about it, something really clicked and the light bulb came on! 

 

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I had been fighting the Nico-Demon with willpower! What could be more effective than that? But I was missing the essential...The Nico-Demon is ME!!!!!

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So when I was fighting myself, how could I win without losing??? And guess what, the loser had been the part that wanted to be FREE! You can't be FREE when you're fighting!!!! 

This fellow James had something - something I really, really wanted! he was not just Quit - He was Happy being Quit! 

So how do you handle the craves if you don't fight??? What do you do instead? 

There's a fellow here named Tommy who repeatedly told me to use Focus and Determination. Could I combine these 2 great pieces of advice? Think about Focus for a minute....

 

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When you focus with determination instead of fighting with determination, the whole picture changes! I had changed my perspective! The Nico-demon became more blurry, less important and the object of my Focus increased in POWER - the POWER to WIN! And what was that very important object of my FOCUS?

 

image

KEEP YOUR EYES ON THE PRIZE! FREEDOM!

FREEDOM from the Chains of Addiction! 

FREEDOM to be the ME that my Creator made me to be!

FREEDOM from pain, suffering, illness, devastation!

Keep Your Eyes on the Prize and ignore the Nico-Demon - but don't fight Him because HE IS ME! Just Focus on the Prize! Will He scream for attention? Oh yea! But when you ignore Him long enough, He loses energy - your Energy is on your Prize! And He gets weaker....and weaker...and weaker...and becomes a little bitty gnat that once in a great while bugs you but you easily have the POWER to swat Him back into His place ...so tiny! So worthless! 

 

   
  

 

  
   

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AND YOU WIN!

  

      Many of you are going through No Mans Land Right Now (Days 30-130)

This is the second hurdle of a longtime/forever quit. The first hurdle is getting through the first 30 days.

      When I quit, I was constantly researching information for when you were through the worst of quitting. One medical study I read during that time, said it you made it through 4 months without smoking you had the best chance of a forever quit.

      Along with that study, I noticed there were so many people losing their quit and dropping off the site I was on before reaching four months.

 

      I had my personal breakthrough at 128 days when I was driving up a hill to a job I had still been a smoker on.

      I reached for a ghost pack and realized I was no longer a smoker. I laughed.

 

      The term No Mans Land came from the person (Ron Maxey) who wrote a powerful post and gave it that title on the site I quit on.

      No Mans Land Will Be Over For Many around 130 days. For some it's longer/For some slightly less.

      We smoked for a long time and we can't expect to have experienced every trigger in the first 130 days.

      We have many memories that are connected to smoking that we must  unlearn by making new ones without smoking.

 

Let's talk about two sets of seasons.

 

      I suggest to you that you have to go through two sets of holidays and seasons. During these two years you will likely experience a family blowup, the infidelity of a spouse/partner, a car accident, and the death of a pet or someone close to you that would normally set you off.  In other words, the hard parts of life.

Example: You have a relative that ticks you off and they are missing from your first annual get together. Well, they may be at the second years so, that's the implication of what getting through 2 years means. 

      The one thing to remember is, smoking is not required. You know if you smoke, you will be a smoker again.

 

      After your first year, your quit should not be such a fight anymore

unless you've fought quitting all along. There may still be some fleeting thoughts of smoking but they are now easily dismissed.

 

You smoked a long time. It will fade away. Be patient.

Nothing and no one can make you smoke! You are in charge.

 

STATISTICS: While roughly 94% of uneducated smokers who attempt to stop smoking relapse within a year, the relapse rate declines to just 2 to 4% per year from years 2 to 10, and then falls to less than 1% after 10 years. Wow! Chance of relapse goes from 94% to 2-4% after two years.

 

http://whyquit.com/FFN/chapters/FFN_14_Relapse_P.pdf

Quitting smoking is a process. It can be learned and practiced, just like anything else. Did you learn how to drive by getting in a car by yourself and winging it? Probably not. And if you did, you probably weren’t very successful.

Let’s look at two different types of quitters. Quitter A did not prepare themselves, they just stopped smoking because they think that’s how it’s done. Quitter B educated themselves and made a plan. Let’s see how they do…

Day 1

Quitter A: I haven’t had a cigarette in 2 hours and I’m freaking out! I want one so bad it’s driving me crazy, it’s all I can think about. I knew this would be hard but this is so much harder than I thought. Last time I quit it was the same thing, after a few hours I just couldn’t take it anymore and now it’s happening again. Why can’t I quit?

Quitter B: It’s my quit day and while I’m nervous, I’m also excited!  I’ve read the materials you all gave me, I’ve got my plan, I know what to expect, and I know this will be soooo worth it a few months from now. I’m 2 hours into my quit and feeling okay so far; I had tea instead of coffee this morning and that helped a bit. Thanks everyone for your support, I know I’ll be GLUED to this site for the next couple of weeks!

Day 3

Quitter A: The last 3 days have been the worst days of my life, I’m crying uncontrollably and I’m so miserable I just want to smoke, I can’t cope, I NEVER felt this bad when I smoked!  Why is this so hard? I can’t work, I can’t sleep, all I can think about is a cigarette. I screamed at my dog this morning and my husband is telling me if I’m going to be such a lunatic b*tch I should just start smoking again. Maybe he’s right. Help!

Quitter B: It’s been a tough few days but I’m doing okay. I’m drinking lots of water and riding out the cravings with deep breathing. It’s true, the craving only lasts a minute or two if you don’t focus on it. The toughest part is not knowing what to do with myself, feeling so restless. But I’ve got my list of distractions and I’m looking forward to cleaning out my Tupperware cabinet to pass the time tonight – that’s a chore that’s long overdue! I haven’t been sleeping very well but I know that’s part of the process. So I’m a little edgy but managing it as best I can. I know this will be worth it!

Day 7

Quitter A: I made it a week, and I haven’t slipped once! Guess I’ve finally got this under control. It’s too bad I can’t smoke anymore, I don’t know what I’ll do when I get stressed over something, that’s when I want to smoke the most. I walk by the smokers outside the office and it smells so good, I almost grabbed one out of their hands yesterday, haha! Well at least I made it this far, maybe I’m finally over this addiction thing!

Quitter B: One week, wahoo!  Thank you all so much for your encouragement, I’m feeling pretty good!  My sleep is starting to get back to normal, and I’m going for long walks with the dog every day, without getting out of breath! I had a really bad craving out of nowhere yesterday, but I just closed my eyes and visualized the craving as a cloud floating away. Then I came here and blogged. It’s so helpful writing about it, and reading everyone else’s blogs. Part of me still wants to smoke but there are other things I want in my life more, like my health, so I just have to keep telling myself that smoking isn’t an option.

Day 14

Quitter A: It’s been two weeks, wow! I slipped last night and had a couple while at a bar with my friends but I’m back on track today. They tasted pretty bad, but it was just too hard to resist. I guess smoking only when I drink is better than smoking every day, right?

Quitter B: Two weeks! This is usually where I would give in and smoke in my past quits but not this time, I know better!  I’m feeling good, this has been so much easier than my past attempts. I’ve already got more energy, I can smell things again. I know there will be some bumpy times ahead, like the first time I’m at a bar, but I’m not even going to try that until I know I’m in a stronger position. Still having to distract myself from some odd cravings here and there, but it’s getting easier and easier to do. And I hope this isn’t TMI but I’m really constipated too… I read that can be part of quitting, how odd. Oh well, at least I know it’s normal.

Day 30

Quitter A: (no longer on the site because their resumed their pack-a-day routine on Day 16)

Quitter B: Well I’m officially entering No Man’s Land, thanks to all of you who told me about it and what to expect. It’s good to know the support doesn’t end after a month, and I still have some changes to go through. Some rough days here and there, but I’m feeling really good overall. I’m a little worried about an upcoming vacation but with everything I’ve learned I think I’ll be ready. Can I swap phone numbers with one of you in case I need to talk to someone while I’m there?


(We could keep going, but I think you get the idea… and if you think I’m making this up, read through the blogs on any given day… you will see these two types of quitters, clear as day…)

So, which type of quitter do you want to be?


EDUCATE YOURSELF
********************************************************************
http://www.quitsmokingonline.com
http://www.whyquit.com


MAKE A PLAN
http://www.becomeanex.org/    click on “Get Your Plan”
https://excommunity.becomeanex.org/blogs/Maggie_quit_8-1-2010-blog/2011/05/06/things-to-do-instead-of-smoking


INTRODUCE YOURSELF
Connecting with this community is a lifeline you shouldn’t pass up! Build your profile and start blogging!

http://community.becomeanex.org/mod/blog/everyone.php

 

Giulia

UNDERSTANDING EXCUSES

Posted by Giulia Champion Aug 11, 2013

Anything your brain comes up with that tells you that you’re justified in smoking is simply an excuse.  Here are some examples

1.    I’m under a lot of stress right now because of... __________ fill in the blank

a) my family - (spouse, ex spouse, father, niece, mother, nephew,  grandmother, brother, grandfather, uncle, sister, grandchild, cousin, mother-in-law .....)
b) my job, boss, co-worker, lack of a job, too many jobs....
c) my boyfriend, girlfriend, frogfriend (just wanted to see if you were payin’ attention lol), boyfriend’s ex, girlfriend’s mother....
d) my roommate, my roommate’s friend, my roommate’s mother, my roommates dog...
e)  my exams, my certifications, my teacher, my advisor, my class mate...
f) my pet, my vet, my vet’s nurse, my vet’s front desk person...
g) my doctor, nurse, health care facility, billing office, dentist...
h) my friend, arguments with a friend, my friend’s friend, my ex-friend, my friends ex- friend...my friend’s mother’s sister,
i) my gas-fed ... car, tractor, weed wacker, leaf blower, snow mobile, jet ski, chain saw....

j) my refrigerator, my garage door, my dishwasher, my toilet, my basement leak...

k) my lack of sleep, my grief, my physical pain, 

l) my lack of money, loss of a purse, rude person at the supermarket, person who flipped me the bird at the stop light, insurance agent, realtor, banker, lawyer, indian chief, social security office, collections department, identity theft....

m)  politics, rednecks, liberals, conservative, PACs, the IRS, the NSA, CNN, FOX,  Obama, Trump...

n) global warming, global cooling, transgendered pipelines....

 

2.  I need to smoke because of.....  (fill in the blank)                             

 

a) death (unless it’s your own because you didn’t quit) of a friend, family member, pet or mass murder
b) boredom, (I don’t know what to do except smoke)
c) my bi-polar disorder, depression, elation, pain meds, constipation, expectoration,  elimination, anger, fear, sorrow, loneliness....
d) I need comfort and only a cigarette can comfort me

e) it's my reward

f) don't wanna get fat: it's my way of keep weight off 

g) it helps me relax

 

3.  I can't quit because.... (fill in the blank)

 

a)  It's harder for me

b)  my birthday, anniversary, graduation party, vacation - is coming up

c)   I'm not sure I'm ready

d)  nothing can replace the happiness a cigarette gives me

e)  it's my only friend in times of trouble

f)   I live with smokers

 

4.  I smoked because.....  (fill in the blank)

 

a) I got  drunk, I forgot.
b) I got drunk, I forgot,
c) I got drunk, I forgot
d) I didn’t follow the NOPE Doctrine even though I knew I should
e) I didn’t seek support and thought I could do it on my own
f) I wanted to just see what one tasted like after all this time
g) I was with a friend/family member and I couldn’t resist the temptation
h) I was out with my buddies and they all smoked
i) I became complacent and thought I had it in the bag

j) I wanted to test myself

k) I let life "get to me"
l) I didn’t think

 

 

If you check any one of those boxes then you either haven’t done your homework or you’ve not made a commitment to quit.  Because if you have, NOTHING will prevent you from maintaining it.  NOTHING.  Well, except it you’re drunk.  Commitment means squat if you’re drunk because you aren’t in your normal right mind.  But if you ARE - then the rest is a choosing.  Choosing to smoke.  

 

Are you getting the message here?  There is NOTHING in your mind that should allow you to smoke once you have made the commitment to quit.   ANYTHING that causes you to put a cigarette in your mouth is an excuse to continue the addiction.  Recognize the thought for what it is - an excuse -  and eliminate it immediately.  You came to this site to help you quit.  Number one lesson - recognize and ditch the excuses.

 

Commitment means no smoking No Matter What.

 

Here's a link to another blog on Junkie Thinking - Excuses to Smoke.

 

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Addendum 1/30/17

Recognize that any reason you can come up with to delay your quit date, like "I wasn't ready,"  is also an excuse.  Don't justify why you CAN'T, rather elaborate convincingly on  how you CAN and embrace your choice.
 

FOUNDATION FOR A SUCCESSFUL QUIT
  
1. KNOWLEDGE

We always say on the site to read the info the site has to offer and other links we give you.  Reading the blogs of our members gives you knowledge of their experiences. Learning about our addiction, the triggers and how to react in certain situations is equipping us for our journey. You will go through NML

 

( No Mans Land) days 30-130 of your quit  where your emotions run high. It's at this point in your quit, if you haven't educated yourself with the info, you could lose your quit. In all my previous quits, I never knew much about my addiction and they ended up as failures. This time I did it the right way and am still quit to this day. Be smart this time!

 2. HAVE FAITH

If you lack faith in your quit, you tend to worry, have anxiety and become more controlled by your circumstances because we aren't confident in the outcome. We  need to believe in ourselves that we can do this!

 

3. COURAGE

It is the mental or moral state to face fear, difficulty and to keep moving on. For example, the initial phase of our quit, where we decide to set that date and start is the easy part. But as days go on, we get a higher resistance from our body and mind.  The challenge is to get through this part of the phase. The resistance will increase but we must continue and never give up. At some point the resistance will get weaker and the going will be easier. Through this process, we become stronger.

 

4. USING WISDOM

The ability to discern or judge what is true, right, or lasting. If you know or have those feelings that something just isn't right or you have a fear something is going to  happen that might jeopardize your quit. DON'T DO IT!! For example, if you always drink and smoke together, going to a party isn't a good idea in the beginning unless you are saying no to the alcohol. Even then, you are still in that social setting and you are putting yourself at RISK. Is it worth it?

 

5. BEING OPTIMISTIC 

It ultimately means the best possible outcome of any given situation. We can either lift people up or drag them down. How you react to circumstances affects other people. Everybody has an influence on somebody.  To become a more positive person, we must replace every negative thought with a positive one. Examples, I can't do this, I just want to give up = yes I can do this! I will try.  I hope I can stop smoking = I will stop smoking. We really need to reprogram our minds. This doesn't just apply in our quits but in our lives. It helps us to become a happier person.

 

I am including useful links below. Use them to find your own personal freedom!

 

Allen Carr's Book..Easy Way to Stop Smoking (free downloadable ebook)

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How To Quit
Staying Tobacco-free After You Quit | Tobacco Withdrawal 
  
Help For Cravings And Tough Situations 
Full Index of Lessons   (10-1hr ) 
Quit Smoking Course Lessons
Lifelines! The keys to a successful quit!  
Lifelines! The Keys to a Successful Quit!! 
    
Things To Do Instead Of Smoke  
 Things to do instead of smoke   
    
Preparing For Your Quit  
Preparing for your Quit...   
  

Videos

Joel's Quit Smoking Library 

 

Goodbye Letter To Cigarettes

 I hope you all write your goodbye letter to cigarettes and post it here, heres mine 

 

Dear Friends & Family: Here's What To Expect From Me While I Quit...

Dear Friends & Family: Here's What To Expect From Me While I Quit...  

 

Putting A Stop To Smoky Thinking

Putting a Stop to Smoky Thinking 

 

Foods that could help you  quit and ones to stay away from

Attention Newbies, Read This First!!! 

 

Law of Addiction

The Law of Addiction 

 

No Mans Land- Days 30-130

No Mans Land Days 30 to 130 (approximate) 

 

What's After No Mans Land

The Two Sets Of Seasons 

 

The Version Of Us

The Version of Us 

 

Quit Kit

Quit kit 

There are a lot of new people here, and this is also a reminder for those who may have forgotten! Always remember your lifelines!

If you should have a serious craving use all of your lifelines before you smoke!

#1. Ask The Audience! Come here and tell us that you are in danger, and why! Wait 15 minutes for us to respond! Give us that opportunity to help you! That is why we are here!

#2. Phone A Friend! Befriend someone here that you feel you can trust! EXchange phone numbers with that person! If you are in a situation that you can not handle on your own, call or tEXt that person!

#3. 50/50! Make two list! The first list should be all the reasons you should not smoke! The second list should be all the reasons you should smoke! Now take the second list and mark out all of the "EXcuses" to smoke! EXcuses and reasons are two very different things! If there is anything left on the second list let me know!Keep your first list handy. Read it, if any of the "EXcuses" try to steal your quit!

This message was brought to by: The Freedom Train! "IF YOU ARE NOT RIDING WITH US, YOU ARE MISSING THE TRAIN"                  Tommy

Sootie

Lessons of the Geese

Posted by Sootie Mar 10, 2013

I'm sure you have all seen this inspirational story before....it's used a lot in workshops for team work. It just hit me today how appropriate it is for what happens here at EX....ESPECIALLY the last point. Just thought you might enjoy it.....................

The V formation used by geese provides "uplift" for each goose from the goose flying in front of it.....in this way the flight is 71% more efficient than if the goose flew alone. Isn't this true of us here? Each of us who have gone ahead provide "uplift" for those coming up behind us. I don't know our percentages, but I know that I was much more successful quiting because of the "uplift" I got on this site.

When a goose falls out of formation, it quickly feels the drag and resistance from not having the help from the others. So many of us know that feeling....especially in the beginning. It is hard to leave the site for even a day because we need the others on here to help us. Those of us who have longer quits now need the site because of the friendships we've made. The drag and resisitance on our lives without these friendships make us hurry back to the site.

When the lead goose becomes tired, he falls back in the formation and another takes it's place. I think we've all seen that no one person can always take the lead here on EX. It becomes a burden and tires that person to a point of losing focus. Someone must step up and take the lead so that others may rest.

All of the geese honk to provide support and encouragement to the goose in front of them. Here we all are "honking" to each other in order to provide encouragement...to say----I am still here!...are you?....keep going!

When one goose is injured or wounded and falls to the ground, two others land with it and stay with it until it is ready to fly again or until it dies. You have only to go to the message boards of those who have suddenly "fallen to the ground." Not only two but many EXes will visit the page daily checking and asking and encouraging the person to return---until all hope is gone that they will return.

The lessons of the geese are the lessons of synergy.......the concept that when we all work together the end result is greater than if each of us acts independently.

Thank you for your "uplift"------it has been my honor to fly with you.

I copied this in the early days of my quit and thought it might be helpful to the newbies on the site.  The document was noted as written by Nancy Smith.

Nicotine's chemical properties are addictive. If you take that nicotine away from your body, it will miss it and you will experience physical and mental withdrawal symptoms.

These symptoms surface after three-five days of quitting smoking and linger for approximately two weeks. We list out some of these symptoms to help you prepare for these side-effects to smoking cessation. Rest assured that these symptoms, while some are unpleasant, will only be transitory and once you're rid of them, will leave you feeling much better after quitting smoking.

Emotional withdrawal
Depression: You may feel low, sad and hopeless. Hence,  it is important to surround yourself with people, preferably non smokers and friends who support your decision to quit smoking.
Anger: Emotional upheaval can make you angry. Others may not be aware of it, but you know what's happening to your body. The age-old remedy of counting to10 isn't such a bad idea. Stop, think, regain your calm and composure before losing your cool.
Boredom: You may have noticed that when you were bored, tired or depressed you tend to smoke. Now that you are on your way to a smoke free life replace these voids with hobbies or get involved with people around you. Pay more attention to your loved ones.
Loneliness: Withdrawal of smoking can make you feel lonely, impatient and irritable. If your friends are busy, take up a dance class or cooking class. It is important to expect these feelings of loneliness, so stay prepared.
Mood swing: Tempers will flare and tantrums will increase. These are not exactly PMS symptoms. Nicotine was once your evil friend but now you have to bear with the loss of the addiction. This will throw your emotional reactions to daily happenings into a tizzy. Most quitters will need help with these mood swings. Replace the smoking placebo with something else. Invest in some great music and strong coffee, maybe?

Physical withdrawal
Nicotine obstructs the flow of oxygen and nutrients to various parts of the body. Now that you have quit smoking, your body has to hit the reverse button to detox.
Bowel discomfort: It's time to change your diet and fitness once you quit smoking. Quitting smoking can cause cramps nausea, flatulence and constipation, therefore it is important to increase roughage and exercise your body.
Nasal and throat problems: When you stop smoking, your nose and throat will try to clear the mucous that has accumulated over the years. You may experience coughing, dry throat and mouth. Fluids are the key to clearing this process.
Increase in appetite: Craving for cigarettes can be confused with hunger cravings. The best way to stay healthy is to consume fluids and low calorie snacks.

Headaches: Lack of nicotine can lead to headaches, the way out of it is with massages, plenty of water and rest. Gently massage your temple, drink water, take a hot shower and take a deep breath.

Lack of sleep: You may experience insomnia after you quit smoking. Take a hot shower before you hit the sack, do breathing exercises too and most importantly avoid caffeine close to bed-time

Restlessness/lack of concentration: You feel like there is energy bursting in you; transfer this energy into something constructive. In these situations smokes would calm your nerves, but now switch off that thought and cultivate a new habit. You may feel you can't concentrate too; try listening to music or take a break from your routine life.
Weight gain: Increase in craving can lead to weight gain, especially if you indulge in unhealthy food. But don't be dejected, you can cut it out with exercise and the right diet.

Sweating and shaky hands and feet: You will feel that your hands and feet tremble. It is a passing phase that will stop. If you experience these withdrawals you know your body is simply shedding an addiction and leading you to a much healthier life.
Skin trouble: While quitting smoking is associated with healthier skin, the period of withdrawal will cause some skin trouble. Some people with sensitive skin might break out into a fresh acne case or suffer from some ulcers in the inner-cheeks, tongue and mouth. The reason is simply that your body is letting go of the toxins and leveling up.

Instead of losing motivation after reading these withdrawal symptoms, the one thought any quitter must focus on is this: The fact that your body is changing so much when quitting, simply showcases how much it is continuously changed and affected while you still smoke. Avoid poor health and dangerous diseases - quit smoking today.

Tomorrow I will have been quit 3 months, and to celebrate I thought I would write down the three things that helped me the most in my quit. Turns out there are way more than three, I can’t rank them, and I would need to write a book to list them all. So for now, I’ve listed some things that worked for me. I have a couple disclaimers before I start:

  • I can’t give you my quit. You have to get your own.  
  • There is no secret recipe or one right way.
  • Many of these ideas are from others Ex’s – thank you, and I will keep passing them on.
  • Any orange cat you see may turn into Picasso at any time, and vice versa.  You decide which is which.

 

1. Acknowledge a craving as soon as you notice it. The longer I let one mess around inside my head without giving it a nod, the more powerful it was when I did.

2. Distraction was my best friend.

  • Absolutely anything works as a distraction. Just distance yourself from the urge.
  • I had big urges, little urges, urges that snuck up on me and ones I could see coming. For me, different distractions worked best for different types of urges.
  • Learn your triggers.
  • Devise an “I never did care about the little things” response and use it for the urges that sneak up on you.
  • In a moment of need, pick any distraction and run.

 

I frequently re-read the “list of things to do instead of smoking,” and other suggestions from people with solid quits. 

Sometimes a physical activity was my best distraction, sometimes something more meditative. Have a “menu.”  

The act of inventing a distraction can be the distraction. “Triple_a” (Acknowledge it, animate it, annihilate it) was a distraction I made up when this big hairy gorilla of an urge wouldn’t go away. I felt like I had invented the cure for cancer . . . wait, I did!

 

3. Give thanks to those who give you support. Chances are you’re a really unpleasant, insecure, prickly person right now. Even if you’re not, thank them anyway. They are helping you save your life.

 

4. Don't wait to seek support until you are about to give in to an urge. Develop rituals that give you frequent doses of support.

  • You need support. If you think you don’t, step over here and pound your head against this wall.
  • When you’re on this site, be greedy. Take more than you think you need. One stupid idea stuck in your hip pocket may be the one that saves you from that next puff.

One that saved me was so stupid, I snickered when I first read it. And then I was caught off guard by a group of people smoking, and the aroma of burning cancer-sticks was like a siren calling. I couldn’t think of a way to save myself, but that stupid idea stepped right up and walked my butt down the sidewalk. Never can tell.

 

5. This is about you quitting smoking. it’s not a competition.

 

6. Quit smoking supports are not your lovers. They are not jealous of each other. Use as many as you need. If you need more, ask.

 

7. You are not the first person to feel like you this. Quitting is very hard and very personal. Much like a baby taking its first breath -- it's scary as hell, but lots of people have done it before.

 

8. “Wanting the cravings to go away is not the same thing as wanting a cigarette.” This from ckoalaco, on this site. Biggie for me.

 

9. No matter how old you were when you had your first cigarette, you were a non-smoker until that moment. Don’t think about becoming a non-smoker, reclaim the freedom you once had. 

 

10. The one foolproof way to stay quit is to not smoke.

 

11. Gimmicks are “ingenious gadgets that work in a concealed way. “ Learn to love ‘em. Think  up as many new ones as you can. Like:

  • When you flip a light switch, visualize it as the switch that makes you a non-smoker again.
  • When you see someone smoking, think of a positive aspect of quitting, like "my breath doesn't smell like rotting horseflesh anymore."
  • Tape a picture on your bathroom mirror that scares you about what nicotine is doing to your body when you smoke.
  • Take a deep breath when you feel an urge coming on. Picture in sailing away on the wind as you breathe out.
  • Put a penny (or a dime, or a dollar) in a jar every time you let an urge sail by.

 

My friend Susan B used to keep her cigarettes wrapped in newspaper, secured with rubber bands and sealed in a sandwich bag. It took her 3 minutes to get one out. When I laughed, she said that her gimmick made her think about whether she really wanted a cigarette or not. She said, “Quit as often as you can, for as long as you can.” I thought, “when I quit I’m just going to do it, no gimmicks.” Susan quit smoking decades ahead of me.

 

12. Pledge your resolve. In this case, saying it does make it so. A pledge is a serious commitment. If you don’t mean it, don’t say it.

  • Pledge in increments of time that you can succeed at. 3 minutes will get you through an urge, 20 minutes will get you through a craving; a few hours will get you through an event where you used to smoke.
  • A pledge is a promise made to something bigger than yourself, and it is powerful. I still pledge.

 

13. Concentrate on the bit of time you have committed to. No thinking about a failed quit 15 years ago, or what you will be able to pledge tomorrow. See number 10.

 

14. Review your list of reasons for quitting every day. Know your milestones and count them down. Don’t have a list? The wall is to your left . . .

 

15. Talk about your quit to someone who supports you. It helped me to talk to someone who had quit themselves.

 

16. Read or listen to all the information and advise you can find about quitting.

 

17. Animate a craving -- visualize it as something else. Any image will do  – you steal it’s power by calling it a different name. Nicotine addiction is big and scary. But a one-eyed purple chicken? Maybe not so much.

 

  • I think of my dwindling cravings as body parts of the overall giant monster urge to smoke that I have left bleeding on the battlefield.
  • If a craving will not take the hint, I may say out loud “finger” or “toe” or name some other body part, as a reminder to us both. It can be pretty amusing at the grocery store.

 

A bit of humor has been the best tool of all. Happy quit!

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