Diversions

Welcome to Freedom, a support group dedicated to educated cold turkey nicotine dependency recovery. Prior to applying to join, it is critical that you read: (1) The Law of Addiction (2) Our Mission Statement (3) Relapse Policy and (4) Rules.
Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

26 May 2001, 22:29 #11

We want it to be clear to everyone that our sole intent at Freedom is to help everyone secure his or her quit. We try to accomplish this by keeping the board focused and thus keeping everyone here focused on one simple premise: everyone has the ability to stay smoke free and live the rest of their lives in their real outside world. We are trying to give everybody the knowledge to quit and stay quit so that they will have the strength and fortitude to live their lives to the fullest. We don't want anyone sacrificing any other areas of their lives, whether it is time with their families, jobs, or friends.

To try to keep the time people need to be at Freedom down to a minimum, so as not to take away time from their other life needs and goals, we try to keep the board on one topic and one topic only, the ability to stay smoke free. For people looking to establish life long friends and social networks, the Internet is loaded with such opportunities. But the general membership of Freedom is here to help secure their quits and help others secure their quits too. As management we promise to try to help keep this a realistic goal at all times.

So everyone please understand that we are all here to help and support each and every one of our members to quit smoking and have the basic understanding of addiction so they can stay off of smoking. We recognize that sometimes other areas of our lives threaten our quits and we try to address these issues when they arise. But please do not try to make us at Freedom more than we are.

Freedom is not a social network. We are a support group that offers focused care and support of one area of our lives. We understand that it is not the only area of our lives, but it is one that deserves its own special attention and priority because it truly is an area that more than any other lifestyle choice, this one can save our members health and lives. It is our reason for being, to help everyone understand that to stay smoke free everyone must always remember to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

23 Jun 2001, 19:59 #12

Summertime does appear to be a slower time at the board than others. Because of this some people may feel the need to supplement the board with other topics or non-smoking related threads just to sustain the appearance of activity. We don't feel any need to do this here at Freedom. We want the threads to always be about the importance of quitting smoking. This way if any new person just thinking about quitting who has only a few seconds to stop in on any given day, the posts they see near the top are focused and give the clear impression that this is a serious site to quit smoking.
Even if no one posts in a given day, the previous days messages are there and are being referenced by numerous people. There will even be days where MSN is down and nobody can post, just read. I know this can become a real drag for our regular members. But for a new member or a first time lurker, the board is still a wealth of information and hopefully an exciting place that grabs their attention and holds them here to read a little more and a little longer. The more people begin to understand about the addiction, and the more posts they see of success stories and the benefits of quitting these people are seeing, the more likely they are going to give a serious effort to quit. Beating an addiction does take a serious effort for the nicotine addiction is a serious problem. But everyone here shows every one else here daily that quitting is possible and maybe even more important, that being an ex-smoker is the preferable way of life.
When you are writing a post seeking help or trying to understand a specific smoking issue, don't feel the need to analyze your words, your understanding of a question is the paramount issue. But if you are starting a string to share a story, always think of how this story relates to quitting smoking and how it will affect any person who drops in for the first time wanting to see what Freedom is all about. Sometimes we only get one shot with a person, first impressions are very important. We want the first impression to always be indicative of what we are like. We are a board where smokers who want to attain Freedom from nicotine can achieve this goal. We are a board that if used properly can help all its members and lurkers to have the knowledge, skill and support to never take another puff!
Joel
Last edited by Joel on 26 Apr 2009, 06:10, edited 1 time in total.
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

02 Jul 2001, 20:24 #13

Even though things may appear quiet at the time, in the background thing are actually very active. We have lots of people who are actually trying to become members, but due to a technological glitch we cannot seem to get around yet we are experiencing a major problem getting them accepted. I have only been able to get one in while trying numerous times in the past few days and all of our other managers are experiencing similar problems. We have over 40 people pending in membership applications that we just can't get in. Some were not eligible since they had not stated that they were actually quitting cold turkey and had actually started their quits, but many are eligible and we all feel bad that we cannot get them right in.

These people are here reading, along with all of the other people who don't apply to join but are turning to us for reference material on how to quit. For all these people, as well for our even more seasoned ex-smokers, we want to always keep a high level of focus on the task at hand here, making sure people know how they can stop and supplying the ammunition and to keep strengthening their personal motivation to stay off smoking. The main point we are trying to reinforce to all is that to stay smoke free we must all remember to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

15 Jul 2001, 04:45 #14

Let no one be confused, the focus of this site is smoking cessation. Please don't bring matters into Freedom which are beyond our scope of reasonable assistance. There are sites on the Internet to deal with all sorts of issues, although some issues are better to be addressed by live professionals in the field in question. Whether another Internet site on other issues is the correct route of action is nothing we can answer. We can only say we are not a site able to deal with all the problems people face in their day to day existance. We can deal with one problem here--nicotine addiction. We deal with it very effectively too. How do we deal with it? We focus our message to be that no matter what happens in your life, the only way to beat this addiction thus saving your health and your life is to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

11 Sep 2001, 23:06 #15

Bringing up the thread today is not to admonish any one for anything that is happening now. I just want to make it clear the importance of keeping Freedom focused on not smoking, even though many of our members our focused on other serious issues happening in the world today. I suspect many people will be spending time in other sites or watching television accounts of events, but if you ever are feeling overwhelmed to the point where your thoughts are turned to a cigarette, get back here and refocus on your quit at that moment. As always, that is what we are here to address. We will be here to remind you why you chose to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

14 Sep 2001, 01:08 #16

I am bringing this one up again because I want to reemphasize the importance of keeping Freedom focused on not smoking. We appreciate that most of the rest of our members from other countries are behind America at this terrible time, but in fact we are not an American board, and we are not a board focused on any political or ideological issues, no matter how popular they may be. We are a truly international site whose members share one purpose--to break free and stay free from tobacco.

People come here to focus their attention on the importance of their quits. It is not that we are trying to be an escape here from other world issues. We all suspect most of our members are absorbed a good part of their days now on other issues and keeping apprised of such matters are likely of great importance. But I would suspect that if anyone here went to a bulletin board designed for supporting victims of terrorism and started writing about quitting smoking issues, you'd either be ignored or ridiculed by the majority of members there.

I would hope neither situation would happen, that instead of being ignored or ridiculed you'd be directed to go to a support group whose interest was helping you to quit smoking. That is what we feel here, that if any of our members feels the need to let out feelings on terrorism or support of America, spend time at sites dedicated to those premises. But spend your time here supporting your quit or helping others support their quits.

We are Freedom from Tobacco, and our members here are fighting to sustain their health and enhance the quality and lengths of their lives. They accomplish these goals by continuing to reinforce their focus and resolve to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

06 Dec 2001, 22:16 #17

I just realized something about this string. We have not "needed" to bring it up since the time surrounding the events of September 11, and even then it was to prevent the board from getting distracted, not in response to people actually diverting it. Prior to that we had not used this string since mid-July. This is a testament to the fact that our members do keep this board focused on smoking and quitting issues.
It also shows that the topic of quitting smoking is big enough to keep a board active and lively day after day, week after week and now month after month, without having to bring in news and events of the day that are not smoking related.
Smoking and quitting are issues of such great importance that they can inspire interesting and enlightening conversations that will keep new members coming, as well as keeping our old members interested enough to continue to return to reinforcing their resolve and help others to stay committed to never take another puff!
Joel
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

29 Dec 2001, 18:08 #18

We are trying to get prepared for the possible influx of members and lurkers that may be happening over the next few days. New Years has the full potential of bringing in hundreds of people in a matter of days. It causes all the managers to have to go into heavy overtime work just trying to handle applications and often leaves little time to help on the day to day posting and monitoring of the boards.
These are such important times to us because it is when we have the best possible chance of helping many new people. The odds are when you arrived that you received quite a bit of focus from one of our managers and many of our members. But this may not be possible if a great influx does occur.
We ask that all of our members do everything they can to help keep the board as mature and focused on quitting smoking as possible. We ask that we keep the site a serious quit site. We also want to make sure that everyone recognizes that we are a family site. Kids do come here and we want parents to feel safe advising their children to come here and read.
There is in fact no reason that we ever need adult content material posted on the board. Just yesterday we pulled a string that had some graphics that some people may have found objectionable for children, or maybe for themselves. Such posts can be distracting and raise controversies that are just unnecessary in securing a quit--and that is the only thing we are really trying to accomplish at Freedom, securing each and every one of our members quits.
We try to keep the board focused under normal circumstances, but under the extraordinary circumstances that may happen soon we take extra effort to ensure are board is safe and offers the best support we can give. When we normally pull strings we notify the person why and even explain on the board why we did. But we may not have the time to do this if inundated with applications. Please understand in advance if such events occur.
The fact is we don't do it often, usually weeks or even months pass where we don't have to control the content of the board. That is because of the maturity and commitment of our general membership that we all appreciate and greatly benefit from. But we ask that at these times we all take extra precautions to keep our board focused on the importance of quitting smoking and staying smoke free. Lets make sure any person reading any string walks away with the feeling that his or her goal remains to never take another puff!
Joel
See also the "I'm Dying" thread. It covers quite well how distactions can really hurt this board, especially under times of heavier traffic.
Last edited by Joel on 26 Apr 2009, 06:12, edited 1 time in total.
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

04 Apr 2002, 05:08 #19

We pulled a string that was going off on a diet pill debate. A number of people responded to the string and for this reason we felt bad deleting it. It is not an action we have to do often here or take lightly. But the string was going off into issues that were diversional at best, and bad medical advice at its worst.

I have brought up a number of strings that pretty much discusses the pitfalls of diet aids or any medications being used as a crutch to quit smoking.
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John (Gold)
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

22 Aug 2002, 23:53 #20

Although some of our members get lucky enough to have major quit milestones fall on their birthday or other special days, when such events do happen we don't want to leave our newest members with the belief that Freedom allows or encourages the celebration of anything here at freedom other than freedom from nicotine.
The principle is really pretty simple. If a smoker arrives here fighting for their very life -- possibly even a few days, weeks or months away from a smoking related stroke or heart attack -- we want every message on this board, and the one that they click upon, to show them that this site is deadly serious about helping them reclaim their life. It's all we do and it's our only reaons for being.
We only have 50 page one thread positions and as you already know we do our best to try and keep them about a 50/50 mix of education and support as we cycle through articles discussing the core principles taught here at Freedom . As Joel often reminds members, we'd rather have zero new posts for an entire day than to have one new post that is a diversion or distraction from what we're really all about
You should have seen us during 9/11. I think this was one of the few places on the planet where those trying to keep their resolve didn't have to focus on the horrible events that had happened. Such focus wasn't easy but it was very necessary.
With over 3,000 members with posting privileges and all of them having birthdays, children with birthdays, anniversaries, pets, human relationships, problems, financial concerns, and family disasters, once we start down the path of using this forum for anything other than helping the next generation of arrivals break nicotine's deadly grip upon their lives, its value -- as a quality cessation tool -- diminishes dramatically.
The above is written for the benefit of all new members. Every once in a while we do have to stop and share this lesson as it's sometimes hard to understand why it's so important to maintain such tremendous focus. We have a couple of posts discussing our focus principles and the evolution of the online journey that we each make in assocation with our quit. We sincerely thank each of you for helping Freedom maintain the same serious focus that each of you found when you first arrived. Breathe deep, hug hard, live long! John
Last edited by John (Gold) on 26 Apr 2009, 06:15, edited 1 time in total.
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