I just came across this quote from Abraham Lincoln: "The best thing about the future is it comes one day at a time."
When I joined this community in 2014, I was so immediately eager to be a part of all the special "clubs" here: The Double Digit Club (days 10-99), The Triple Digit Club (Days 100-999), The 6% (one year), and The Quad Squad (Day 1,000-9,999) and whatever "club" is reserved for Day 10,000...and beyond!
I saw the celebrations. I saw the milestones. I saw The Elders hitting 3 years and 5 years and 9. I wanted that, too! I felt I would go crazy to get 'em!
A fellow 2014 classmate sent me a private message, cautioning me that I was (perhaps?) burning too hot. Coming on strong. Pushing too fast. This trusted classmate had already seen too many eager newbies flash across the screen as bright and fiery as a meteorite...only to fizzle out and fade away.
I totally got where she was coming from.
Yes, I was on fire in the early days. I was burning hot. I was a fireball in the sky. I was just so elated to have found a place to learn and share and listen. I knew I had found a community that would be a special turning point in my life, and I was ferociously motivated by the thrill of earning every milestone to be had.
And that's okay! It's okay to be enthralled and fired up! Keep that energy going, even if it scares a few folks!
However, dear electrified newcomer, never lose sight of the inescapable fact that even the hottest enthusiasm has no choice put to fit into a 24-hour mold: a day. One. Just one. Just this one. Today.
You know that Double Digit Club that starts at Day 10? Well, it "costs" a week and three days of enthusiastic work to get through the door. Ten days in a row that you didn't smoke. One day of getting it right, then linking it up to one more day of getting it right...and then eight more.
You have to fight for all 10. That takes fire.
Triple Digit Club? Yeah, that's taking those first 10 days, and repeating it 9 more times. 100 days...one day at a time.
You have to cherish and respect all 100. That takes heart.
(And The 6%? Those first 365 days? Um, yeah, that's not any of your business right now. Snap out of it! Hahaha!)
So, that's your task. That's the unavoidable reality of your process. "One day at a time" is the key to your early recovery, and no amount of fire can speed up the process, so please don't try. Please, don't look for shortcuts and magic fixes. There aren't any. But, my dear Exmate, I have a thrilling secret to share: It's possible to fall in love with the process! You can embrace the blessing of waking up each morning knowing that all you really have to do is NOT smoke today. You can rejoice in having friends here to share your journey. You can feel empowered by learning something new each and every time you come to the community. That is when the fire burns hottest - in the moment! On this one day!
And that's the best thing about your future without cigarettes: Your recovery from smoking won't overwhelm you with a impossible demand to be "done with it" all at once; no, it will hand you one task at a time, one day after another. Easy. Paced. Doable. Possible.
So, set this day on fire, my friends! It's your right to shine, so get it! Respect it!
And tomorrow? Do it again!
One day at a time.
(something like 60-ish days away from 5 years)