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This community is open to all who are recovering from nicotine addiction.
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Have you noticed periods of time where you have forgotten about smoking?
Oh, yes Anne. I can go hours not thinking about smoking. It's only when a trigger sends my mind into a "got to have a cig now" feeling which puts me front and center to my addiction.
How nice it would be to have just one for the moment. But, I'm afraid forgetting will never happen, it's too ingrained in my head for the rest of my life.
So no, I don't ever forget.
I won't lie. The thought of smoking a cigarette has crossed my mind from time to time. At least now thought it is only a thought and not a mind numbing body craving. Now is more like a conversation in with myself.
Do I really want to go back down that road. It's not going to do for me what I think its going to do for me. I will choke and gag and then, have to fight of lighting upon a second smoke - right back to where I was 2 and half years ago. Nope - I am way to lazy to go through that again.
Chocolate covered raisins - a long hot bath or shower - a few games of backgammon - browsing through this site and corresponding with the fine folks on this site who are working on the non-smoking lifestyle. I still read allot of the posts.
I go on this site every day throughout the week (office worker). I never want to loose sight of were I am in my addiction. It helps me remain grounded and to not take my quite for granted.
Keep up the good fight Andrew, it does get easier and easier. It is a life long abstinence.
Andrew, the interval between thoughts about smoking and their intensity does decrease over time. It's not a linear decline, and it's different for everyone, but it is a decline.
To Paul and anyone else interested
I ran across this affirmation today. Don't remember who posted it but it applies to me in a big way.
The secret of success... you have to want
to quit more than you want to smoke.
Once you stop thinking that you are
depriving yourself of a cigarette and
realize that not smoking is the reward,
you will persist.
I have this tacked on my wall at eye level so I see it when sitting at my desk.
I hope all is well today with everyone.
That is very true and the essence of quitting. Without this you most likely not succeed, and if you do manage to quit anyway lets say because of immediate health threat, you will be miserable thinking you have lost something and yearning for it every day.
I think the key word is deprivation. No matter what your circumstances are, if you feel that you are being deprived of smoking you will never get over the obsession, even if you have quit for a period of time.
One week and going strong.
Well done! You can do it.
Strong work Andrew!
How’s it going? I like your new pic!
I love that too; pausing and reflecting on the fact that not smoking is NOT deprivation.
There is a lot to be said for learning to sit with our feelings. It’s an art really, and takes practice. In our culture it isn’t easy to do, and feels unnatural and uncomfortable initially. We live is such an over consumeristic culture with deeply ingrained expectations for instant gratification. I’m not sure where along the road it became this way to the extent it is…? I recall my folks as being quite different. They knew the value of waiting for things. Then somewhere along the way our culture in general shifted. Perhaps it has something to do with the advent of instant coffee and microwave ovens . The main thing they have taught us is “we can get or make what we want faster!” But is it better? Not in my opinion. Then, along come services such as Amazon! Woohoo! Now we can get our stuff delivered same day! At the expense of all the small businesses struggling to stay alive and make ends meet of course. But who cares?! We, individually, get what we want now!
The point I’m trying to make is, that culturally, and subtly, over time, we have become these beings that live on such a superficial and self motivated level in many ways in our day to day lives. It may not appear that these things have had a negative impact on who we’ve become, but they have. They have taught us that the things we want in life are instantly and readily available. I believe our day to day lives have soared to this plane of not really allowing ourselves time to process, to think, to feel. On the surface they are conveniences we view as making our lives simpler and better. Those simplicities come at an overall cost of making us into beings that stay on this plane not really needing to slow down in so many ways and not needing to work that hard to acquire what we think we want or need. All of our thoughts and actions carry over into making us who we are. Living mostly on autopilot, not needing to do much else. So why would we sit with, just sit with, how we feel about things? We have unlearned how to.
Smoking is a HUGE part of that instant gratification for us, or so we think. It takes a lot to rewire and unlearn those knee jerk responses and reactions to so many things. With nicotine we didn’t have to! Anxious about something? Have a smoke. Ahhh. That’s better! Mad? Have a smoke! That helps. Just get some really good news? Oh boy! Let me have a cigarette! That one really boggles my mind now. But this is what we did. We didn’t even allow ourselves to enjoy those moments without feeling we need to inhale some burning leaves to really top it off.
Im a believer in when the urge strikes, and for me it occasionally still does, the best thing to do is look at the urge to light up square on and just stare at it for a minute. Think about what is underneath that superficial desire for instant gratification. Feel those things and be with them. Roll with them. Let them flow through. Process. It can be done without a smoke. It just takes allowing ourselves the grace and time and space to do it.
I feel like these thoughts make sense though came out a bit discombobulated. I’m gonna go sit and think about it more without a smoke.
Keep rolling! You are doing GREAT!!!