Emotional Loss Experienced from Quitting Smoking

The emotions that flow from nicotine cessation
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

30 Jul 2003, 20:16 #26

The Emotional Journey of Adjustment
Denial - "Who am I kidding, I can't quit!" "My cigarettes are my friend!" "It's too hard!" "Who am I kidding, I can't quit forever!" "It's getting worse not better!" "I won't be me anymore!" "I'm no fun without smoking nicotine!"
Anger - "This isn't easy and it isn't fun but I'm gritting my teeth and doing it!!!" "Get out of my way, Dog!" "Leave me alone, People! "No one seems to appreciate the tremendous sacrifice I'm making, here!!" "I've giving up my entire life here, my happiness, my best friend, and for what!!!" "What do I get, craves and hastles!!!
Bargaining - "Hey, I've quit for a whole day!" "A little reward, just one little puff!" "I've earned it!" "I'm stronger than all those other quitters at Freedom!" "They won't know!" "Even if I do relapse, I think I can do it again!" "But I won't need to, I sure I can handle one big puff of nicotine!" "I'm different!" "Anyway, I'm sure it can't be as nearly addictive as they're all saying!" "They're just trying to scare me!"
Depression - "Well, I've held-out and it looks like I'm going to make it but how can I possibly function without smoking nicotine?" "I don't feel like a smoker anymore and I'm not any comfortable ex-smoker either." "I feel lost and oh so alone." "Is this what it's like being an ex-smoker?" "Is this what it's like being me?"
Acceptance - "Hey, this isn't so bad after all and great tasting coffee too!" "I sort of like all this extra time and the fresh air!" "A passing thought or two when I saw smokers smoking but not a single crave yesterday!" "Amazing, and the quitting chatter that fogged my mind seems to be lifting too!" "Is this me?" "This is good!" "This is far far easier than living life out of a pack!" "I know I can handle any challenge that comes my way!" " This is entirely doable!" "I know with every fiber of my being that I'll never put nicotine back into this body, I'll Never Take Another Puff!"
The next few minutes are doable and only one rule - no nicotine today!
Breathe deep, hug hard, live long! John (Gold)
Last edited by John (Gold) on 16 Mar 2009, 23:31, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:58

03 Jan 2004, 07:12 #27

We all experience emotional changes to some degree or another when we quit. It is a matter of patience and understanding what you are going through. One minute, one hour or one day at a time.

Despite how you may feel during this temporary period of adjustment we call quitting, This journey of healing you have chosen to take is well worth putting up with withdrawal symptoms both physical and psychological.

I, and many others at Freedom will promise you this. The journey gets so much better. What you are possibly feeling at this time is not what it feels like to be a comfortable x-smoker. There is no amount of discomfort you will experience that will overshadow the comfort that will embrace you not so far down the road.

I read a quote that kind of went like this....

" Each and everyone of us will experience some sort of emotiuonal suffering in our lifetime." "How long we allow this suffering to continue is a choice we make."
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:58

12 Jan 2004, 14:42 #28



Just for today, not one puff, no matter what!
Last edited by Joanne Gold on 16 Mar 2009, 23:28, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:58

28 Jan 2004, 12:43 #29

for nofuma
"Bargaining is probably the most dangerous stage in the effort to stop smoking. "Oh boy, I could sneak this one and nobody will ever know it." "Things are really tough today, I will just have one to help me over this problem, no more after that." "Maybe I'll just smoke today, and quit again tomorrow." It may be months before these people even attempt to quit again."
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Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:01

21 Feb 2004, 07:02 #30

Thank you again for all this reading. Emotional loss??? yes, that's it. It's being very tough some moments and now I know it's all in my head.
But I'm beginning to think I'm strong and I'll never take another puff! (everyday I repeat this over and over) and I read, read, read
Fernanda -
Free and Healing for Ten Days and 22 Hours, while extending my life expectancy 16 Hours, by avoiding the use of 197 nicotine delivery devices that would have cost me0,85 .
Last edited by Almost Island Gold on 16 Mar 2009, 23:34, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

12 Apr 2004, 21:23 #31

Acceptance
Last edited by John (Gold) on 16 Mar 2009, 23:36, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

04 May 2004, 23:16 #32

I saw where a member who has been off a significant time period is seeming to be in a "bargaining" phase again. Actually, there is a phase that many people go through once they are off significant time periods that mimic bargaining. It is a stage of complacency.
The self talk a person may do when in complacency is the exact same self talk he or she may do when first quitting and bargaining. It will only be one, it'll get me through the crisis, it will be a terrible cigarette and help me secure my resolve, no one will ever know, and so on.
The only difference between the bargaining phase and the complacency phase is that when you are bargaining, you know all of the comments are lies and that you are just trying to convince yourself that you can have one. When in the state of complacency though you can believe everything you are saying. Whether you know the feelings are lies or not doesn't change the fact that they are lies.
You don't have the option of one and if you try to test the theory you are going to find yourself a smoker again. A smoker who is never going to have the support that you had last time (see Good news, our members don't relapse anymore... ) and more importantly, a smoker who may never have the strength, desire or worst yet, the opportunity to quit again.
To keep this quit going is contingent on keeping your initial reasons for wanting to quit and your current reasons for want to stay quit reinforced. The more you work at securing your resolve the easier it will be and the happier you will stay in your commitment to never take another puff!
Joel
Last edited by Joel on 10 Apr 2009, 05:53, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 20:30

08 Jun 2004, 23:06 #33

Joel, your message 100 on this thread is so on target. I've been a non-smoker since Jan. 21 of 2003. I won't let myself touch even one cigarette. I can't. I know I can't stop at one. The most difficult thing for me to admit was that I could not be a "social" smoker as so many people are, or claim to be. I can't have "just one" and then walk away. At a much younger stage of my life I took a break from smoking and told myself I was too smart to do that to my body. (I should have been, right?) Well, somewhere in the 4 years without a cigarette, I convinced myself that I had it all under control and I could have one from time to time and everything would be fine. That wasn't the case, and once I began smoking (bearing in mind the first few tasted horrible and I had to work on up to where they tasted good again -- how sick is that??) I could not stop. Thank God I know now that I do have this addiction and I can't cater to it in any way, shape or form. The only thing I can do is to never smoke again. We don't tell heroin addicts that it's okay to take one more hit, and we shouldn't tell ourselves it's okay to have one cigarette.

I believe I understand as well as anyone how difficult it is to find new coping mechanisms. For years, many of us escaped from reality by hiding behind nicotine and not addressing the situations that caused us stress. When the nicotine is gone, we have no choice but to deal with the myriad of emotions that flood us. It's not fun, and it's not easy. But try and remember that if you talk yourself into allowing one more cigarette, not only will you find yourself dealing with life's everyday problems, but also you will have to deal with quitting again. It's so much more difficult to stop when you've already done it and failed previously. It's worth it, but it's not easy.

People, please remember that you are worth the extra effort to get through life without cigarettes. Even if YOU don't think you are, someone out there does and don't you owe it to them to be the healthiest person that you can be?
Last edited by justjudi gold on 16 Mar 2009, 23:42, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:03

11 Jun 2004, 23:47 #34

Joel
(just thinking out loud): Your post in message 100 is very powerful in its own right. Is it possible to make that its own separate discussion thread?
(I see quit a few responses to members posts that have links to the Emotional Loss discussion concerning "bargaining", and then they go on to write about not getting complacent. Yet, its hard to find out just what complacency really means, unless a person searches through the Emotional Loss threads and happens across #100).

Richard
18 weeks, 1 day
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

12 Jun 2004, 00:05 #35

Done Richard: Complacency
Last edited by Joel on 16 Mar 2009, 23:40, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:58

09 Aug 2004, 23:56 #36

For Chris again...
Once you reach the stage of acceptance, you get a true perspective of what smoking was doing to you and what not smoking can do for you. Within two weeks the addiction is broken and, hopefully, the stages are successfully overcome and, finally, life goes on.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

28 Aug 2004, 02:02 #37

Bargaining is probably the most dangerous stage in the effort to stop smoking. "Oh boy, I could sneak this one and nobody will ever know it." "Things are really tough today, I will just have one to help me over this problem, no more after that." "Maybe I'll just smoke today, and quit again tomorrow." It may be months before these people even attempt to quit again.

From: Joel Sent: 5/4/2004 10:16 AM
I saw where a member who has been off a significant time period is seeming to be in a "bargaining" phase again. Actually, there is a phase that many people go through once they are off significant time periods that mimic bargaining. It is a stage of complacency.
The self talk a person may do when in complacency is the exact same self talk he or she may do when first quitting and bargaining. It will only be one, it'll get me through the crisis, it will be a terrible cigarette and help me secure my resolve, no one will ever know, and so on.
The only difference between the bargaining phase and the complacency phase is that when you are bargaining, you know all of the comments are lies and that you are just trying to convince yourself that you can have one. When in the state of complacency though you can believe everything you are saying. Whether you know the feelings are lies or not doesn't change the fact that they are lies.
You don't have the option of one and if you try to test the theory you are going to find yourself a smoker again. A smoker who is never going to have the support that you had last time (see Good news, our members don't relapse anymore...) and more importantly, a smoker who may never have the strength, desire or worst yet, the opportunity to quit again.
To keep this quit going is contingent on keeping your initial reasons for wanting to quit and your current reasons for want to stay quit reinforced. The more you work at securing your resolve the easier it will be and the happier you will stay in your commitment to never take another puff!
Joel
Last edited by Joel on 10 Apr 2009, 05:52, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 20:29

25 Nov 2004, 00:37 #38

I can totally relate to this as I'm 9 days into my quit. I CANNOT stop crying about everything! I have more energy but this helped me think that I'm displacing my reason for crying. I'm looking for an acceptable excuse and I think the chemicals in my body are going for a real ride. Keep kleenex close by and saying through the tears, "I will not smoke today."
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

02 Jan 2005, 23:32 #39

Acceptance
Patience! It's coming, we promise!
Last edited by John (Gold) on 16 Mar 2009, 23:47, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:58

11 Jan 2005, 06:35 #40

Last edited by OBob Gold on 10 Apr 2009, 05:53, edited 2 times in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:59

16 Jan 2005, 23:27 #41

Hi RickD, and welcome to Freedom!

Fantasy cigarettes sound like the Bargaining phase of grieving for your addiction. It means that your quit is progressing, and you are healing.... just remember to win the argument against that inner voice that says "just one...".
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

19 Feb 2005, 06:53 #42

There's a rose bud slowly opening and it's you!
Last edited by John (Gold) on 16 Mar 2009, 23:46, edited 1 time in total.
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25 Mar 2005, 23:22 #43

  • Not one tastebud inside either lung, where we intentionally sucked smoke
  • No love lost for the 43 carcinogens in each puff
  • No love for any of the 4,000 non-flavor chemicals
  • No love when we waited too long and badly needed a fix
  • No love for having interrupted some of life's best moments to leave and feed
  • No love for paying our own money to slowly destroy a bit more of our body's ability to receive and transport life-giving oxygen
  • No love for killing ourself 13 to 14 years early
  • Knowledge that 100% of cigarette flavor additives are still available in non-addictive form
  • Knowledge that the more than 200 neurochemicals we used nicotine to steal were each already ours.
  • Knowledge that arresting our chemical dependency and returning neurochemical control to us and life is as basic as no nicotine just one day at a time, to Never Take Another Puff!
  • An appreciation for the fact that every cessation related sensation we experience during this amazing temporary journey of re-adjustment is part of our healing at the physical (re-sensitization), subconscious (trigger re-conditioning) or conscious level (an opportunity to shed honest light on years of denial rationalizations, minimizations and blame transference).
  • The honest realization that with each passing day the challenges will gradually become fewer, shorter in duration and generally less intense.
  • An understanding that should we experience a few days during early recovery without significant challenge that we will naturally drop our coping defenses, and when a challenge is at last encountered it may feel more intense - a wonderful sign that the gaps between challenges are widening.
Our dependency is now under arrest.
Free and healing, the next few moments are doable!
Last edited by John (Gold) on 17 Mar 2009, 01:49, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:59

19 Apr 2005, 00:27 #44

For MaryMac, with my condolences.

I have also lost loved ones, and the process of grieving the loss of a loved one is very similar to the process of "grieving" the loss of an addiction.

In both cases, you really can't go back. You can't allow yourself to become stuck in one phase forever, either.

The way out is the way through. God be with you.

BillW
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

23 Mar 2006, 00:40 #45

Ive had all the stages. The last one was depression What for? I used the tools i have read on here to cope with it and use logic. Especialy when i have been out with friends who smoke and ive had a drink with. I think its coping being me now ! without nicotine. I have accepted its an addiction and i dont need nicotine. I can live life and enjoy it without nicotine.


I have been quit for 2 Weeks, 16 hours, 41 minutes and 12 seconds (14 days). I have saved £60.98 by not smoking 293 cigarettes. I have saved 1 Day and 25 minutes of my life. My Quit Date: 08/03/2006 00:00
cathy
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Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:02

12 Apr 2006, 18:46 #46

I thought I had acceptance but yesterday and today Ive been dipping into depression
all the great education on here and my head (addict) is telling me Ill never be happy without cigs.boy do I know that one and of course smoking does not make me happyI have been quit for 4 Weeks, 2 Days, 5 hours, 46 minutes and 3 seconds (30 days). I have saved £78.62 by not smoking 302 cigarettes. I have saved 1 Day, 1 hour and 10 minutes of my life. My Quit Date: 13/03/2006 06:00
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

22 Oct 2006, 02:25 #47

If you have not yet read Joel's Library from cover to cover at least once then now is a great time. Don't skip the "Why Do People Smoke" chapter as it's loaded with pearls of wisdom on a host of logical yet faulty rationalizations. The chapter is a wonderful aid in helping sort through years of often less than honest thinking.
Baby steps! The next few minutes are entirely doable and there is only one rule - no nicotine, not a puff! Everything you did while dependent upon nicotine you can do as well as or better as "you!" I know it's hard to believe right now but before long you'll see that it's much much easier being a comfortable and relaxed ex-smoker than it ever was feeding nicotine's never ending two-hour chemical half-life! Just one rule ... no nicotine just one hour, challenge and day at a time. The next few minutes are all that matter and each is entirely do-able!
Breathe deep, hug hard, live long! John
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

25 Nov 2006, 03:46 #48

The video version of this thread:
The emotional stages of loss Dial UP
3.05mb
HS/BB
30.4mb
Audio
1.23mb
Length
08:18
09/28/06
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

23 Feb 2007, 03:26 #49

This is the thread that made this all possible for me...thanks Joel

VICKI - Free and Healing for Six Months, Nineteen Days, 21 Hours and 56 Minutes, while extending my life expectancy 14 Days and 3 Hours, by avoiding the use of 4078 nicotine delivery devices that would have cost me $925.35.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

14 Mar 2007, 03:21 #50

From Paragraph 9 of the initial post by Joel:

.....What does all this have to do with why people don't quit smoking? People who attempt to give up smoking go through these five stages. They must successfully overcome each specific phase to deal with the next. Some people have particular difficulty conquering a specific phase, .......
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