Beginning the quitting process is all-consuming for that first month. But remember you've been doing something repeatedly for some of you over 30 some odd years. You woke up with it. You went to bed with it. It was always there when you were sad, happy, frustrated, angry, tired. It started as a cool, fun thing to do and ended up being your emotional crutch. We are creatures of habit. That's the way we were designed, but we certainly weren't born with a cigarette in our mouths.
I feel it's very important to understand your whys and whens when you first begin quitting or deciding to take the plunge. We are so automated when we smoke that sometimes we don't even have to have a reason to light up. I can speak from experience because I was the classic chain smoker. I put one out and I lit another one shortly thereafter. What to do with my hands was the biggest obstacle to overcome for me..
I distinctly remember during the first 3 months of constantly reaching for that phantom pack. The first time I did it, I was amazed at how robotic it had become. The saying of “I can do this in my sleep” was replaying in my head. You simply do it because you've done it for so many years. Breaking my rituals was one of many hard tasks I had to unlearn over the first year. You'd be amazed how many times or events during your lifetime smoking is tied to. Emotions that smoking is linked to. Reactions that smoking is married to. Realizing them, identifying them is a building block of a successful quit.
Take the first month or even a few weeks before you finally smoke your last one to track the whens and whys by using the tracker tool. By using that, you're giving yourself those few seconds to put the peg in the right hole. You're stopping yourself to see what time it is and what you're feeling at that moment. Associate A (time) with B (emotion) that's causing C (smoking). The first two to four weeks after you're quit is all physical combined with the emotional, but this section will help you when the physical is through but the thoughts of smoking keep popping up. It helps you to understand why the sparks are being ignited to queue the smoking response otherwise known as triggers.
Read, read and read again the many blogs and discussions held on this site. Go to the many groups they have on here to understand the quitting process and what your brain goes through. This isn't just simply placing the pack down and, poof, you're quit. This isn't a situation where once you're quit for a few months, you'll never think of smoking again. Be nosy and poke around on people's profiles and read under their content. Go back in time and go back to their very beginning and see what they went through and how people responded. I'm eternally grateful to many elders on this site for pushing me forward and still pushing others.
Never feel embarrassed if you slip, you smoke. Think at that exact moment why you felt the need to light up. What did you think it was going to do for you? Get right back on that quitting journey again. Learn from those moments to make yourself stronger. Understand your excuses and make them into solutions. We're all in this together. Never give up. Find what works for you. This can be done !!!!!