For some strange reason everytime I don't have nicotine, I feel like I'm missing a big part of my life. That makes it hard for me to quit.
Welcome to the community!
Of COURSE you feel a void in your life when you quit nicotine. It gave you a brief hit of dopamine and was available when you were tired, or stressed, or lonely, or hungry, or bored or....................it was, in a way, your bff. We ALL felt that way about smoking/vaping - whatever your delivery method of choice.
The important thing you can do right now is to educate yourself on what nicotine does to your body and mind. To that end, I highly recommend Allen Carr's “The Easy Way to Stop Smoking.” This easy and entertaining read provided a world of good information about nicotine addiction, most of which I was not aware. I credit it in large part with my success at quitting. You can search for it online or at your local library.
You should also read the posts here and perhaps go to the pages of folks who you think might be helpful. You might visit whyquit.com, quitsmoking.com and livewell.com for the good information contained there. @https://excommunity.becomeanex.org/groups/best-of-ex has lots of blogs written by members of this site with their experiences and guidance. Here is a video to inform you further about nicotine addiction: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IpWMgPHn0Lo&feature=youtu.be.
After you have completed the recommended reading, it will be time to make an informed choice of the quit aid, if any, you will use. If you go that route, I personally recommend the aids that don't let the addict control the dose such as the available prescription drugs or the patch. If used properly, gum, lozenges and inhalers are fine, but they need to be used only as a last resort after you have tried to delay and distract. I have seen folks become addicted to them if they substitute them for every cigarette they used to smoke - just trading one addiction for another. You need to start out with a plan to reduce use of them over time - which the patch does by decreasing the dose contained in them.. For the gum, you can start by cutting each piece in half, then in quarters, then sub regular gum of the same flavor in between, adding more and more regular gum. For the lozenge, you need to start subbing a mint in between to begin, increasing the number of them over time. I do not recommend the e-cigarette for four reasons: 1) the vapor has been compared to the polluted air in Bejing on a bad day, 2) they just provide another nicotine delivery system while continuing the hand to mouth smoking motion, 3) it maintains the addiction to nicotine, and 4) they are proving to be unsafe.
It will be informative if you do the tracking and separation exercises recommended here on the site. As you track each cigarette smoked, note its importance, and what you might do instead. Put each one off just a little to prove that you don't NEED a cigarette just because you think you do.
The idea is to change up your routines so the smoking associations are reduced. Drink your coffee with your OTHER hand in a place different from when you smoked. Maybe switch to tea for a bit. If you always had that first smoke with your coffee, try putting your tennies on right out of bed, going for a quick walk, then taking your shower and THEN your coffee! Rearrange the furniture in the areas you used to smoke so the view is different. Buy your gas at a different station. Take a different route to work. Take a quick walk at break time where the smokers AREN'T. You need to distract yourself through any craves. You can take a bite out of a lemon (yup - rind and all), put your head in the freezer and take a deep breath of cold air, do a few jumping jacks, go for a brisk walk or march in place, play a computer game. Keep a cold bottle of water with you from which to sip. Don't let that smoking thought rattle around in your brain unchallenged. Sometimes you need to quit a minute or an hour at a time. You will need to be disciplined in the early days to distract yourself when a crave hits. Get busy! Here is a link to a list of things to do instead of smoke if you need some fresh ideas: https://excommunity.becomeanex.org/blogs/Youngatheart.7.4.12-blog/2013/02/25/100-things-to-do-instead-of-smoke
The conversation in your head in response to the "I want a cigarette" thought needs to be, "Well, since I have decided not to do that anymore, what shall I do instead for the three minutes this crave will last?" Then DO it. You will need to put some effort into this in the early days, but it gets easier and easier to do.
Stay close to us here and ask questions when you have them and for support when you need it. We will be with you every step of the way!
For some strange reason? How long did you smoke? It's a HUGE PART of our lives for a very long time, and it affects every single part of our lives. It's not just an addiction, it becomes part of how we live and how systems work in our bodies. Let me say this again:
We're all here because of how huge it is and how much we need each other to quit. Read, and learn, and work out the best way for yourself and we will support you here. Also, know this:
The Law of Addiction states, "Administration of a drug to an addict will cause re-establishment of chemical dependence upon the addictive substance." (From WhyQuit.com)
Yes, I think most of us felt that way when we quit and have equated it to losing a friend. It's important to realize it really wasn't a friend but an addiction. We smoked with everything we did in our lives. Educate yourself about nicotine addiction, create a quit plan and pick a date. The tools you create will help to get you through those feelings "of missing something". In time smoking will become replaced with new behaviors. Having support on your journey can really make a difference. I know it did for me. We're here, so just reach out.
I agree that most of us felt that way, we were pretty lost without our emotional shield. It gets better, it takes time but it happens.
"We lose one of our most comfortable, reliable, and familiar ways of relating to ourselves and to the world around us." Someone posted this on this site when I was early in my quit. It spoke to me. That was over 6 years ago. My journey to learning how to relate to myself and the world has had many twists and turns. It was not easy but I did it. I will never be sorry only grateful. Congratulations on contemplating quitting smoking.
It takes time to relearn life without the smokes BUT by being willing determined and committed along perservence you can and will be successful, most of us smoked for quite a few decades so it's bound to take time to feel comfortable in your own skin again because every blessed thing we did was wrapped around the smokes BUT the longer you're quit the easier it will get. P40ace
yes and no !
Initially, yes huge part missing, because of mental dependency on smoking.
Later, absolutely no no no,,,nothing missed out. In fact, today after six years of quit, I feel, I should have quit earlier.
Any now...the final answer will be no...nothing lost or missed.
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