How to stop smoking?
Stopping smoking can be easy or hard. It is really up to you in my opinion, as to which of these options apply. I speak from experience because I was once a chain-smoker who had failed to give up the habit but eventually became successful at doing so and found it easy.
This is my story of how I quit smoking well over 20 years ago. I had no "withdrawal pangs" and have not been tempted to start smoking again! I had been a heavy smoker since my late teens and I was in my mid-30s when I stopped.
How I stopped smoking and found it easy?
Everyone knows that smoking is a serious danger that can cause lung cancer but stopping smoking can be very difficult to do. This is how I succeeded in quitting the habit.
How to stop smoking?
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How I stopped smoking
A personal story
My father had been reading a best-selling book by Allen Carr entitledThe Easy Way To Stop Smoking so I read it too. The author confesses that he spent 25 years as a smoker and that he got through as many as at least 60 cigarettes a day. He certainly know what it was like being a smoker and about the problems people encounter when trying to quit.
His book is very easy to read and understand and he had a number of celebrities who claim to have been helped by reading it. The actor Patrick Cargill of Father, Dear Father fame endorsed the book by saying: "Allen knows what he is talking about. I was a compulsive smoker, but I stopped smoking with his help. More people should listen to him."
So what is Allen's method you are no doubt asking? Well, it is all summarised in a chapter entitled The Easy way To Stop where the author states: "It is ridiculously easy to stop smoking, all you have to do is two things.
1. Make the decision that you are never going to smoke again.
2. Don't mope about it, rejoice about it."
So that is really all you need to know, and I can vouch for that advice being the truth. But get the book if you feel you need to know more about the subject.
What I did was this: I said to myself that after I finished the last cigarette in my current pack of 20 that I was never going to buy any more and that I was never going to smoke again. I put into my mind the idea that as of tomorrow I was starting a new life as a non-smoker. I went to bed that night with that in mind.
The next morning when I awoke there were no cigarettes in my house so I couldn't smoke if I wanted to and I was already mentally primed not to want to. I carried on with my day as normal, although not smoking was a big change to my routine.
I actually had no trouble getting through that first day and kept mentally telling myself how clever I was. This is something I kept on doing until I know longer even thought about smoking in the weeks ahead. I kept telling myself how I was cleverer than all the people I knew who were still hooked. I was "rejoicing" in having quit smoking!
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Having a goal
Decide to do it
For me personally it was having a goal and confidence I could do it was what enabled me to stop smoking. I was studying in the Church of Scientology at the time, and although there were no rulings against smoking in Scientology, I came to the conclusion it would help my progress if I gave up the unhealthy addiction.
I mention this because I had an important reason to stop smoking and a belief. I was doing training drills known as "TRs" in which you are required to sit opposite another person and confront them. In a drill early on in a series you must do nothing but be there and confront the other Scientologist. You must not speak, cough, smile, move or do anything else but sit there and look at the person opposite you. This may sound simple but it is not. A supervisor in the course-room decides when you have passed the drill and it can go on for hours. I kept failing.
This was very frustrating because I beleived that I would not be able to make any further progress in Scientology unless I could pass my TRs. I was well aware that other people could just sit there and not do anything else. There was something holding me back.
I thought long and hard about this and concluded that because I was a habitual smoker at the time my body was probably reacting to not being able to stop for a cigarette. I decided that this was an important reason to quit smoking.
I mention all this, not because I am advocating Scientology, which I subsequently left some time afterwards, but because it shows that I had a reason that was very important to me, a reason to stop smoking.
You might think, well, there are plenty of better reasons to quit than this. We all know about the threat of lung cancer, but how many of us stop because of that? The point I am making here is that the reason is not what is important but your belief in its importance is!
You also need to think of what the benefits will be. For me it was passing a course. That was what I wanted to do.
In Scientology you are taught that you really are an all-powerful, indestructible and immortal spirit being, known as a "thetan", but that you have become trapped in the illusion of life in a material body. It has similarities to Hinduism, which is perhaps not surprising because L Ron Hubbard stated that the Vedas were some of his source books for where he got his ideas from.
These ideas about how powerful you really are helped give me the confidence I needed to stop smoking.
So there are two important factors there: a reason that was important enough for me, and the confidence in myself that I could achieve my goal. As someone who was successful in quitting the habit of smoking cigarettes I can tell you that those are the two main factors in how I did stop.
Quitting without any withdrawals
Many people have since asked me if I had any withdrawal pangs, and I can in all honesty answer, no! In fact, not only did I suffer no such pangs but I felt very self-satisfied and proud of myself as having been able to do this, at having succeeded where so many others fail.
And guess what? When I was next carrying on with my Scientology course I flew through completing the TR drills I had been stuck on and completed the course. I felt that this validated what I had concluded. I had been right about this. And of course this was something more to feel good about, something more to rejoice in. I had stopped smoking, and I had also passed a course I had previously not been able to make any progress in.
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Another benefit of stopping smoking is that your achievement can actually help inspire others to quit too. This happened with my father who was so impressed with my success that he attempted to follow my example and he manged to quit as well.
I hope that if you are a smoker that sincerely wants to stop smoking that this article will help you do so!
Copyright © 2012 Steve Andrews. All Rights Reserved.