I happened to listen to a podcast this week that asked this question....and then asked me to ask that question of myself. It's stuck with me for the past few days so maybe it's worth a post. I know that if I were to ask a friend "how can I support you?" I'd be happy to help and do what I could to support them. So why not myself? I guess it's not really a matter of 'why not myself' so much as I had just never thought of it that way. So....in asking myself "What can I do to support you?" I've come up with some things I'd say as a response if some third party asked me that. Turns out there are things in there that I don't do for "myself" that I sure could easily do.
1) Don't leave cigarettes and lighters on the countertop, right in plain access. My husband still smokes, so this is real in my house. BUT...I still have lighters here for candles and lighting the charcoal...they can be put away when not being used, they don't need to be right out there in view 24/7. His smokes, not much I can do about it.
2) Don't beat this into me every second of every day or remind me of it when I'm not thinking about it...I want to stay quit, but I don't want it to be a constant thought process. I have a never smoker friend who asks every time she's around me if I've stayed quit and how hard is it? Wants to talk about it and hear how many cravings and what they're like. I just wish she'd let it go, but I can recognize that I also play that loop in my own head daily....questioning myself if I'm NOT feeling a craving. I need to let it go.
3) Give me a pat on the back on milestones or even just randomly from time to time. It feels good to hear it. It feels good to acknowledge it. It's ok to be proud of it.
4) Do things that don't include smoking. Go to sports events where you can't smoke, a movie theater, out for dinner or even to a bar (no smoking indoors in our state) instead of hanging out with the smoking buddies. Whether anyone comes with me or not, these are things I can choose to do and have fun doing. I've gone to all the high school football games alone until this year when the never smoker friend of mine decided to tag along (yay!). What that taught me is "do those things and they will come" You'll find new friends, make new normals, and if not....you're still feeling good and having fun.
5) Appreciate the good. Good and bad can't seem to live in my head together. I'm either grateful for the small things or hung up in the negative. So, to support myself, I need to consciously focus on the good things. Some days that may simply be that my son has not turned my guest bath into a spawning ground for whatever fishing bait he's chosen this week, but I need to focus and find ways to smile instead of hang out in negative.
This concept also applies to other areas and other things, but I do think from here out I should and will ask myself "how can I support you?" and then try to be the friend to myself that I would be to anyone else.