Blog Post created by rosycowgirl on Jul 22, 2019

Hello Friends,


I have been struggling to protect my quit and stay focused and committed to my whys. 


I quit for 6 months in 2017 and I was feeling so free and strong, until I relapsed and didn't quit again until last year. My father, who smoked for 40 years before switching to a vape, passed away suddenly from a heart attack in November. I tried to use this as more motivation to quit, but only made it in chunks of a few days or a week. 


May of this year I spent several weeks planning for my quit, examining my relationship with cigarettes, building up my toolbox to resist cravings, reexamining my whys and keeping them close to me. I enlisted my partner, also a smoker who wanted to quit, and we set our quit dates together. We went on a mountain climbing vacation and snipped at each other but felt amazing and the exercise made it my easiest first week of not smoking to date. I made it 25 days-- until I went back out "on the road" (touring music) and smoked. I've tried to keep some separation between work and home, no smoking at home! Quit every freaking week when I come home. But out there-- I let my whys drift away and let the excuses and nicotine monster be louder than my strength in my quit. My partner also tours, but he has been able to stay clean since end of May! His commitment inspires me and gives me hope, but my failure to do the same sends me to a shame spiral. 


I am NOT GIVING UP, I have had more day 1s in the last two months than the last two years. I will not give up, give in, or let cigarettes have my life. 


I've changed my approach some, allowing myself some NRT in the form of an e cig, as long as I don't smoke combustible cigarettes! Anything that will help me be free. 


Through reading on this site from the amazing mentors here I've changed my ideas on craving-monster-thoughts, and try to keep in mind that any thought that leads to cigarette in my mouth is a *(%#&@#%(^@# excuse. I am the only one who can stop me from smoking. 


There is so much smoking, sharing of smokes, casual smokers, drinking, hours of waiting, stress, etc. at work, and I've built my communities around smokers. I am trying to be patient and loving with myself as I disentangle smoking and nicotine from my toolbox and relationships, but I struggle. I want to be strong and focus on the positives of my life, and of a smoke free present and future.


How do I commit myself more fully to staying focused? What helped you most through the first 2 weeks? How did you keep your motivations present in your mind during the early days of quitting? How about the later days? How do I set myself up to succeed in an environment that is riddled with smokers? 


Thank you all for any advice or kick in the pants you have to offer.