Stopping smoking: Didn't know I could do it
Smoking: How did you give up?
At age 37, I had been smoking for 25 years.
That was two thirds of my life chained to the habit.
I decided that I had rolled the dice for long enough; It was affecting my health and it was time to stop.
I was a heavy smoker who smoked 20 a day and probably 20 a night if I was boozing.
I told people that I was going to stop and they all laughed at me saying it would never happen and I was too weak.
I used this as motivation as in "I will show them".
I then devised a plan of how to actually stop. I purchased the good book. Not the bible but Alan Carrs "Easy Way To Stop Smoking".
It was extremely helpful in changing my mindset towards smoking.
If you read it with an open mind, it is hard to argue against what it says.
It challenged all my long held beliefs about cigarettes and made me realise that this was a drug addiction.
A harsh pill to swallow but it was true.
Nicotine is the reason we smoke, not because it's 'social' or it 'relieves stress' or any of the other justifications we keep telling ourselves. We need a fix of nicotine and that is why we keep smoking.
I thought about the pros and cons and quickly realised there were no pros.
It affected my health and fitness, it made me smell and look terrible, it cost a lot of money and it did absolutely nothing for me.
My life could be exactly the same except for the little thing between my fingers.
I decided that my last cigarette was going to be at 7pm on Sunday the 8th of August 2010.
I smoked it with a smile on my face and celebrated when I finished it.
I was a non-smoker from that moment, I didn't have to wait to be a non smoker.
The next day, I set small goals like make it to lunchtime, make it to 24 hours, make it to one week and I celebrated everyone of them because I never thought I could do it.
It sounds weird but as I achieved these milestones I actually felt taller as I realised I could do something that seemed impossible. It was a real shot of self-esteem that I had not felt for a long time.
I did use the patches to help me with the nicotine withdrawal but after three days I took them off and did it from there.
I have never looked back and have stayed determined not to be slave to the nicotine ever again.
I never thought I could do it but I did and so can you.
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