I stop smoking at the end of January this year I was not having craving at all I had a slip in February and now that's all I think about??? how long will this last? I don't want to fail.......... please help
Welcome to our community!
When you smoked in February, you started from scratch again. You CAN do this - but you need to understand what you are doing and work at this in the early days. Please do the reading - it makes for a GREAT crave buster!
The most important thing you can do right now is to educate yourself on what nicotine does to your body and mind. To that end, I highly recommend Allen Carr's “The Easy Way to Stop Smoking.” This is an easy and entertaining read. Here is a link to a free PDF version of it:
You should also read the posts here and perhaps go the the pages of folks who you think might be helpful. You might visit whyquit.com, quitsmokingonline.com and livewell.com for the good information contained there. @https://excommunity.becomeanex.org/groups/best-of-ex has lots of blogs written by members of this site with their experiences and guidance.
After you have completed the recommended reading, it will be time to make an informed choice of the quit aid, if any, you will use. If you go that route, I personally recommend the aids that don't let the addict control the dose such as the available prescription drugs or the patch. If used properly, gum, lozenges and inhalers are fine, but they need to be used only as a last resort. I have seen folks become addicted to them if they substitute them for every cigarette they used to smoke - just trading one addiction for another. I do not recommend the e-cigarette for three reasons: 1) the vapor has been compared to the polluted air in Bejing on a bad day, 2) they just provide another nicotine delivery system while continuing the hand to mouth smoking motion, and 3) the batteries can spontaneously catch on fire. . But – any method that you think will work well for you will be best for you.
The idea is to change up your routines so the smoking associations are reduced. Drink your coffee with your OTHER hand. If you always had that first smoke with your coffee, try putting your tennies on right out of bed, going for a quick walk, then taking your shower and THEN your coffee! Rearrange the furniture in the areas you used to smoke so the view is different. Buy your gas at a different station. Take a different route to work. Take a quick walk at break time where the smokers AREN'T.
You need to distract yourself through any craves. You can take a bite out of a lemon (yup - rind and all), put your head in the freezer and take a deep breath of cold air, do a few jumping jacks, go for a brisk walk or march in place, play a computer game. Don't let that smoking thought rattle around in your brain unchallenged. Sometimes you need to quit a minute or an hour at a time. You will need to be disciplined in the early days to distract yourself when a crave hits. Get busy! Here is a link to a list of things to do instead of smoke if you need some fresh ideas:
The conversation in your head in response to the "I want a cigarette" thought needs to be, "Well, since I have decided not to do that anymore, what shall I do instead for the three minutes this crave will last?" Then DO it. You will need to put some effort into this in the early days, but it gets easier and easier to do.
Stay close to us here and ask questions when you have them and for support when you need it. We will be with you every step of the way!
Howdy. You say you "had a slip" and that's all you think about. Not quite sure I understand. Did you go back to your quit? And since then all you're thinking about is smoking? Is that what you mean? If that's the case, that's the result of slipping. It awakens the nicotine receptors. That's why we don't harken to slippage. Maybe not as devastating as a full blown back-to-smoking relapse but the psychological damage has occurred nonetheless. And as you're finding, you're paying the price for it.
You see you opened wide the door to the possibility of smoking in your mind with that slip. And it's still ajar. And until you close it again and seal it shut - you're going to hanker for one. Each time you allow that one puff, you reinforce the option to smoke rather than killing it off. You have to regain your quit thinking. That Not One Puff Ever thinking. That Smoking Is Not an Option thinking, that Never Another Day One thinking. And how do you do that? By reading daily on here. The blogs. Read the posts in Best of EX and also type "relapse traps" in the search magnifying glass and read that material. You need to reinforce the reason you've quit rather than romancing the reason you want to smoke. And go back to understanding your triggers and plan on methods to overcome them.
You can do this. But you have to work at it. Are you willing to?
"the psychological damage has occurred"
no one knows this ahead of time.
I call it putting a hole in your armor.
Welcome! We want you to Succeed also!
Do the reading, please! It will make a difference.
We don't use the word slip because it is rather vague - does that mean a puff, a cigarette, a pack, a week, or more....?
You relapsed. Did you take that into account when you got back into your Quit?
Giulia pointed out that giving yourself permission of any type to smoke just makes the whole Quit virtually impossible. You have to lock down your determination that smoking is not an option - No Matter What!
Once that decision has been made it's a question of figuring out how to get through daily Life with other coping skills. It's all here! We'll share these ideas with you and you can fortify your Quititude, LOCK down your Decision and the whole thing will go much smoother!
Yes, you can do this! It is not an up hill fight! Everything is out of your system. It is now you and your brain. Read like those people ahead of me suggested, and come here a lot. We do it together here!
The permission comes before the puff.
I've had the same experience before - wondering how long the thoughts of wanting to smoke would last. Unfortunately, the longer you allow those thoughts in your mind, the worse the situation becomes. You are basically fighting to quit and that's a recipe for relapse. I've done a lot of the reading suggested here, particularly the book by Allen Carr that Nancy (Youngatheart) gave you the link for - she also headed me in the right direction. It helps to put you into a completely different mindset - you're not giving up anything!! You are only making positive gains!
You cannot fight your way to quitting - you have to accept quitting. I'm still young in my quit, but the advice and support found here has made all the difference in the world to me.
You are in the right place for support. The more educated you are about addiction, the easier will be to handle the cravings, or to handle yourself when faced with the cravings. As many said it before me, it is all between you and your mind; you do have the ability to correct the course of your thoughts, and make them work for you, not against you. Tell us more about you, so the right tools can be recommended. Congratulations for coming here to blog, please come back, we are all learning while staying EX..
My best advice to you from my own personal experience... no matter what, do NOT allow yourself to dwell on the craving, when you have one... do something to distract your mind... I think a craving scientifically only lasts a couple of minutes.. so DISTRACT yourself to get you through it.. This tactic is what finally put me over the edge to keep to my quit. And, be completely assured, that this will get better!! I promise!! I just passed my 2 yr mark.. never thought it could happen... Now, I could never go back..nor do I have any desire to now You too can do this.
dpernell You can distract yourself through the craves, you awakened the sleeping beast when you smoked and now it thinks it has a chance. Show it AND yourself that it doesn't. One step at a time, baby steps when you have to take them. Thinking about smoking all the time and fighting the craves is a recipe for disaster...if you prepared for your quit, you should have a list of triggers and you should have a list of things to do INSTEAD of smoking! Remember why you want to quit, think of how you CAN quit and you can take control of your own life without daily struggles. Smoking will not do anything FOR you, but it sure will do lots TO you. No crave ever killed a person but no one can say that about smoking. Smoking does NOT relieve depression, pain, anxiety, anger, or any other uncomfortable emotion that your addiction has told you it will do. It LIES!
How about if you had the information on what to expect and when?
When the toughest times to get through are and how to get through them?
How about tools that would break any craving.
Do you think you could do it then?
What To Expect In The First Four Months
Here's How Your Senses Can Override Your Thinking
No Mans Land Days 30 to 130 (approximate)
I saw this blog several days ago but did not respond because there were so many good answers. You will find that the thought of not thinking of smoking has no timeframe, but for me when I accepted the fact that I was no longer a smoker and nothing would ever cause me to smoke again no matter what was happening in my life it was a relief ans weight off my shoulders. It was no longer a constant thought in the forefront When I said to myself I was a not smoker and new it it was around 80 something days. NOPE.
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