Nicotine Use is learned.
First we learned how to light up and puff eventually without choking. We learned how to inhale and get that dopamine as fast as possible. We also learned other little tricks along the way. How to beg, borrow, steal, or buy (in my case very underage), how to light up when we had no obvious means - a lighter, how to hide the smokes from our parents, teachers and other adults who might object, how to cover up the smell of tobacco, where we could smoke without getting caught, with whom we could share our Addiction, how to make excuses when we were caught, how to lie to ourselves and others about our true thoughts and feelings.
Second we learned to think differently about Nicotine Use. I remember as a little boy wishing that the adults wouldn't smoke around me, wishing they would quit even while knowing that they wouldn't. I told myself that when I became an adult there's no way that I would smoke - Yuk! Even before I smoked I began listening to the Nico-Lies - implanting them in my head. How I would seem so much older, more mature, cool, rebellious, belonging. I learned to think simultaneously that I could quit smoking any time and that I could never, would never choose to live without Nicotine. I had made a 180 about adult smoking - even around children.
And last our feelings learned to change. Every time we felt festive, comradery, relaxation, daring, anger, frustration, stress, .....anything we were inextricably drawn to the biggest Nico-Lie of all - I need a Smoke! All feelings came down to that and then we told ourselves that that hit of dopamine somehow made us feel better! So any mere sign of emotion made us think of a Sickerette! Why work through my anger, sorrow, frustration or stress when a smoke would "cure" it? We learned to stunt our feelings when we became addicted.
We even learned to create a hard shell around our Core Values. Oh they were there, underneath all that relearning because values aren't so easily relearned! But they can be covered up under layer of layer of relearning behaviors, thoughts and feelings hiding - waiting to be Freed from the prison of Addiction!
Those values are what gave each of us the ability in spite of decades of learning Addiction to search for a way out of the prison. They brought us here!
This is why we say no pill, patch, lozenge, whatnot will rescue us - We have to rescue ourselves with relearning. Because what was learned can be relearned. Not unlearned but relearned!
We can relearn behaviors, thoughts, and feelings and tap into our Core Values.
That's what BecomeanEX is all about! That is what Recovery is all about! That's why we're here!
Learn to become an EX!