Monday, August 27, 2007


If you have tried to quit smoking and failed before, take comfort in the fact that most smokers fail several times before quitting successfully. Your past failures are not a lesson that you are unable to quit. Instead, view them as part of the normal journey toward becoming a nonsmoker.

The information below will ease your way and help insure that this is the last time you ever need to go through the quitting process. You can do it!

© 2000 by Patrick Reynolds

The most important step to take is the first step --
admitting you have an addiction.

When asked why you smoke, you might have said, "I just like to smoke!" or "It's my choice to smoke."

The tobacco companies have promoted the idea that smoking is a matter of personal choice. As I see it, there really isn't as much choice as they have suggested to their customers.

Ask yourself, and be totally honest: Am I addicted to tobacco? Am I truly making a freely made choice when I smoke?

You might consider that you need to have a cigarette. Studies have shown that nicotine addiction is as hard to break as heroin or cocaine addiction.

In Nicotine Anonymous' 12 Step program, which sprang from the venerable Alcoholics Anonymous program, the first step is admitting to yourself, "I'm powerless over tobacco." Making this admission may seem trivial to you, but for many it is a very significant part of completing the journey to becoming a non-smoker.

By telling smokers that smoking is a personal choice, the tobacco industry has helped to keep its customers in denial about the true extent of their addiction. If smoking is a choice, then what's the rush to quit? The tobacco companies have used this spin to help keep millions of customers buying their deadly products.

Admitting that you're smoking more out of addiction than choice will help motivate you to go on to the next steps -- taking control of yourself and becoming a nonsmoker.

This admission will further serve you by helping you stay smokefree later. In the months and years after you quit, when temptations to smoke occasionally overpower you -- and they will -- remind yourself, "I have an addiction and I'm powerless over tobacco." Saying this to yourself in overwhelmed moments of desire will help give you the strength to say no to "just one" cigarette.

If you can make it for just five minutes without giving in, the urge to smoke be controllable or disappear. In this way, you'll be able to stay smokefree for life.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Why Should I Quit Smoking?

Make a List of Reasons Why You Want to Quit Smoking

Most people who smoke wish they didn't. They live with a hatred for the habit. The fear of serious illness is usually there too, lurking in the background, and always that awful feeling of being powerless to quit. Addiction does that to a person.

As smokers, we live in denial about what cigarettes are doing to us. We have to. Yes, we know that smoking causes cancer and emphysema - we know smoking kills and that we're playing roulette with our health...our lives.

For all that we worry though, most of us don't think anything will happen to us - we have time! We'll quit in time... The bad stuff happens to other people.

Keeping that layer of denial in place between ourselves and the harsh realities of smoking gets harder to do the longer we smoke. For most of us, there comes a time when the "smokescreen" starts to wear thin. It's inevitable.

The fact that you're reading this article means you're thinking about quitting - probably a lot. You're unhappy enough to be seeking out some help. Good for you. You're a step ahead of the game because you're looking for information about how to quit smoking.

Be practical in your approach to smoking cessation. Much of the process of release from this addiction comes down to plain old practice. We taught ourselves to smoke one day at a time until it was interwoven into just about every activity in our lives. It only makes sense then that we should allow ourselves the time to retrain old habits into newer, healthier ones. Arm yourself with knowledge and support, and be patient. You'll grow stronger by the day.

Start your quit smoking program with a list of reasons for quitting. We all have them.
Why do you want to quit smoking?
My own 26 year addiction turned me into a person I didn't much like.

I was fearful that a smoking-related disease would catch up with me before I found a way to quit smoking. I was worried sick, so to speak.

I hated the smoker's cough I had developed and the shortness of breath that I knew was a signal of lung damage.

I hated the smell, the embarrassment and the need. I especially resented the need. Nicotine dependency made me feel weak and helpless.

These were some of the first things I put on my own list of reasons, and it didn't take me long to add a long line of other things I hated about smoking as well.

What are the reasons behind your desire to quit smoking? Get out some paper and a pen, and list them out. Every single thing you can think of, from the largest, most obvious, to the smallest. Write them all. Carry that list around with you, and add to it when something else comes to mind. Think about the pros and cons of smoking as you compose your list.

By focusing your thoughts on your own personal reasons for quitting, you are laying the foundation for successful smoking cessation. It all starts in your mind, and once you get your thoughts moving in the right direction, taking action will come more easily.

It's like a snowball rolling downhill. Channel your thoughts onto that sheet of paper, and you'll begin to gain momentum. Once you start that snowball rolling, you'll be amazed at what you'll be able to do to change your life for the better. Make it happen!

"If you want to change your life, change your mind."

From Terry Martin,
Your Guide to Smoking Cessation.