the main obstacle is understanding what you're fighting against. To stay quit is to understand what you used smoking for in your life. We didn't just wake up and feel the need to light up. We were using it for something to start with and just ended up addicted to nicotine. So welcome aboard. Once you've completed Smoking Trigger Tracker Tool | Guides & Tools | BecomeAnEX , please visit Newbie Quitters and read some there and also Best of EX. Therein contains some very useful and timeless knowledge saved to share with those that are serious about quitting smoking and also understanding how nicotine works inside our brains and bodies, How Nicotine Addiction takes over (and what to do about it!) . Be sure to use the search feature on the right-hand side of your screen to find answers to questions you may have along the way. I can guarantee you that at some point or another someone at sometime has or had the same feelings you are questioning. We're just a bunch of former smokers helping other smokers quit and stay quit !!!!
I did welcome you back in February. I thought your name and face looked familiar, just took a second for it to register. I read your story on your profile page. I may be wrong, but it seems you never followed through with a support base after being released from rehab. I too smoked at even the wind blowing the wrong way. Any excuse was good enough for me. I've been researching quitting for many, many years. the right way, the wrong way, the fly by night way. Hundreds of dollars was spent on finding something that would just make this go away. Well, that's not possible.
What is possible is understanding your foe and fighting him intelligently. There is no exactness to quitting. We all used it for different things. We use drugs to numb the pain, alcohol to make us more likable or assertive, smoking to make us look cool when younger and comfort us when we're older. It's what happens within our brains that makes us come back and simply they're legal and you can go down the street to the corner store to buy them just like you can with alcohol. I wrote this about 2 months ago, Can you smell that smell? this one passage inside of it might hit home for you:
crazymama_Lori wrote: I get it. It's not smoking that has me hooked. It's what's contained inside that tube that I have a problem with. I get a taste of nicotine and I'm off and running, plain and simple. Separate the two. I have a friend who says he's not an alcoholic because he only drinks beer and loads of it. It's not the beer he has a problem with; it's what's contained in it. He's addicted to alcohol. He can't have just one drink a week and be pacified anymore. It's not just the beer. In our case, it's not just the cigarettes.
I get it. It's not smoking that has me hooked. It's what's contained inside that tube that I have a problem with. I get a taste of nicotine and I'm off and running, plain and simple. Separate the two. I have a friend who says he's not an alcoholic because he only drinks beer and loads of it. It's not the beer he has a problem with; it's what's contained in it. He's addicted to alcohol. He can't have just one drink a week and be pacified anymore. It's not just the beer. In our case, it's not just the cigarettes.
Understand your foe and respect the beast. I never realized what I used smoking for until I had to track my cigarettes and put a reason (trigger) behind every time I lit up. It made me stop every single time to make note of the why. Then you start to identify the what times and the what fors. When are you likely to light up and what are you using it for. The main part to concentrate on when completing that section is how I plan on separating from that trigger. Here is where we train our brains to associate another action instead of lighting up. If stress is your trigger, instead of lighting up, use a stress ball. Be sure to use a different action for each trigger. If boredom was my trigger, instead of lighting up, I'd color or design a new craft I was going to make. I think you see where I'm going with this. be creative with your "different actions," and choose what's right for you.
What I found the most frustrating when I first quit was not having a precise schedule set out in front of me. After 10 days, you feel this. After 30 days, you feel this. We're all different because we all used the act of smoking for different things in our lives. Also what helped me extremely to STAY quit is having a very strong support system. being around people who get what I'm going through. Where I can go and read things and say to myself, wow, I feel exactly like that. After two years, I'm still here reading and learning. These people are the force that helps me to stay quit when I feel weak. And sometimes I do feel weak after 2 years, but it's usually because something in my life is sparking smoking memories. the physical need is gone. Something in my life is turning my thoughts to smoking, but I take the time now to recognize what it is, problem solve and be done with it. I no longer have the go back to the same old excuses. those don't exist for me any longer. it's not part of who I am.
You'll be going through the emotional roller coaster for about 3 to 4 months, but understand it's your brain healing and it's just not happy at that point. It's not getting fed dopamine every half-hour or so. I was a chain smoker. So mine was every 15 minutes or so one after the other. I did that action for 43 years. I was a two-pack a day smoker, sometimes three if I happened to be drinking that day. When I quit, I knew I could never pick up another cigarette for the rest of my life. To me those were smoking potato chips. I can't simply just take one or even cut down. Find what works for you. If cold turkey isn't your thing, then try the patches OR the gum OR the lozenges. talk to your doctor for some help, Chantix, wellbutrin. Most of all, come here every day and journal your journey, Trust the Process
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