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building a new smoke free identity   General Chit-Chat

Started Aug-1 by EliNish; 362 views.
EliNish

From: EliNish

Aug-1

Does anyone else feel like smoking has been/is a part of their identity? I do - and I have been working a lot to change that.

I suspect part of why I started smoking was to "look cool" and fit in. It became part of my identity of being a bad-ass and a rebel. Isn't that funny how smoking can influence your self image like that?

This past week, I've been asking myself a lot of questions and re-creating my identity to be a non-smoker.  The biggest thing is, I want to be free. I want to be free from dependency on nicotine.  When I tune in to what I'm feeling and how I see myself without cigarettes, it is an entirely new experience. I was 16 when I started smoking and I'm 56 now. That is a LOT of years of seeing myself in a certain way! But that identity was a false one - it came from outside influences like advertising and social peer pressure.

I'm remembering more of myself as a kid, before I started smoking, and the zany things I did and thought. Pretty bizarre how this is coming up as part of my cessation process. But it feels real, it feels like I'm coming home to myself.

Eve1973

From: Eve1973

Aug-2

Hi Eli,

Yes I too was tricked by Peer Pressure and the media. Smoking is definitely now frowned upon.....and a terrible addiction. 
 

I haven’t felt “Cool” smoking in a looooong time. It was more of a hindrance. I had to plan when I would get my next fix, when at a party, out to dinner, airports, at work etc! Actually it frees you when you don’t have to plan, you tend to think of OTHER things. 
 

Currently I am a little over 6mos free, it really is very freeing. Last night out at a BBQ and didn’t once think of smoking. I just realized it now as I write to you. Hmmm it does get easier!

I would definitely read and soak up the knowledge on this site, pick a quit date and stick to it. 
 

Have your plan in place. Cold turkey, NRTs? Candy and low fat stuff in fridge.....but be adamant about quitting. If you need post it notes to remind yourself WHY you are quitting all over your home....so be it! No matter what you do to break yourself of this terrible addiction is acceptable and better for you!

Good luck....hope too hear soon your quit date!

Jatchat

From: Jatchat

Aug-3

Hi EliNish,

I'm remembering more of myself as a kid, before I started smoking, and the zany things I did and thought. Pretty bizarre how this is coming up as part of my cessation process. But it feels real, it feels like I'm coming home to myself.

I can relate to this, I am exercising now and though I didn't start smoking until I was 30 yrs old I am relating to how physical I was as a teenager and young adult.

Kind regards

Anthony

Molly010

From: Molly010

Aug-4

EliNish said:

I suspect part of why I started smoking was to "look cool" and fit in. It became part of my identity of being a bad-ass and a rebel. Isn't that funny how smoking can influence your self image like that?

That is one of the reasons I started at 15.  Seems silly now that I look back on it.  We all just looked kinda stupid standing outside (in the 80's) in the courtyard smoking in high school.  Can you believe they used to let high school kids smoke out in the open?  Imagine if a school did that today?  LOL  I cannot.  I quit on August 1, 2018 and so glad I was finally able to do it.  I will not look back.  I do not want to go through that again.  How far along are you?

Like you Eve, I had not felt "cool" in a long time.  Just the opposite now.  Congratulations on 6 months!  You are at the half-way house.  I was feeling really positive at that point.  There is a weird time between months 8 and 11 when cravings seem to hit a bit harder than usual.  Not as bad or as often as in the beginning, but a reminder to keep your guard up.  

Stay strong fellow quitters!  Best of luck and keep kicking cig butt!  (pun intended)

CC to Eve1973
Eve1973

From: Eve1973

Aug-5

Molly, 

I absolutely plan to keep my guard up! Thank you for the wisdom! I am so determined to make this stick, and am beginning to feel happier about quitting....if that makes sense. Happier because not planning when to have the next smoke. 
 

This is definitely a process! But I know I will persevere! Thanks again!

Eve

In reply toRe: msg 5
xvaper

From: xvaper

Aug-5

I am only 35 days off nicotine but I also struggle with identity issue of a smoker. Also started at 15, in high school. There was this underbrush 'cave' in the school yard where all the smokers went and huddled. I thought it was so cool and he teachers knew but as long as you didn't do it outside in the yard they didn't do anything. It was the 80's lots them smoked too.

If see someone lighting up on TV or a movie, I am triggered right away. I am hardwired for it. It will be hard to erase an identity of 30 years.  I know I will struggle with the smoker identity, especially when I go to Paris (once a year). But since Corona is still king, I won't be going to Europe any time soon, so I can build my strength in the meantime. The positive thing is that I feel free of the constant need to replenish my fix, and that's a great feeling.

In reply toRe: msg 6
Eve1973

From: Eve1973

Aug-5

Give your self a break.....if you don’t smoke you are weakening the Nicodemon. Every time you get thru a trigger/craving you are rewiring your brain! This is not a quick fix. It will as most people have said, take up to a year to go through the struggles. I am only 1/2 way to that mark, but at times I still have the triggers/urges.....but does get easier!

Time seems like it stands still when you 1st quit, you have more than a month now, keep going and TRUST the process!

Congrats on 1 month!

xvaper

From: xvaper

Aug-5

thank you! I appreciate the input. i did not think i could do one day and here I am..

In reply toRe: msg 6
Molly010

From: Molly010

Aug-6

Xvaper, 35 days is a big deal.  When I made it through the first month I was more confident in my quit because I had not made it that far in a long time.  At the same time, you are still early on so the triggers will feel more intense.  I remember seeing movies where people were smoking and had the same reaction.  It gets easier the longer you go and the more you are able to overcome those triggers.  Congratulations on your quit!  

xvaper

From: xvaper

Aug-6

Thank you so much. I will keep at it.

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