Have you noticed some of these "lost" long-term quits?

Joined: December 19th, 2008, 12:03 am

March 16th, 2005, 2:31 am #76

(be sure to go to the beginning by clicking on First down below)
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

May 18th, 2005, 8:30 am #77

" What I always thought was the greatest indicator of the addictive nature of nicotine is not how hard it is to quit. I think what better illustrates it is how easy it is to go back. That after being off for months, years, or even decades does not render a person "cured.""
The words above are so very true. I didn't find quitting that difficult. I have quit several times, for periods up to three years. So why go back?? Because it is an addiction and I will never be completely cured.
But this time I am not giving up. It is not difficult. I don't want to become a smoker again, so I will NEVER take another puff.
And why should I? It is not worth dying for! Ivano - free since April 6
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

September 17th, 2005, 7:10 pm #78

Nicotine is nicotine is nicotine. Nicotine is stronger than you are, it has controlled you for years and maybe even decades. Even though you knew it was harming you and possibly killing you, nicotine made you keep delivering it over and over again day by day. You will not win this battle by being stronger than it, you will win it by being smarter than it. Use your intellect in this effort. Know your enemy inside and out. To stay in control, give up the idea that you can control nicotine. You can't control quantity. Your options are to smoke nothing or to smoke everything. This translates to you can stop delivering nicotine and live, or deliver it once and use it over and over again till it cripples and kills you. If you prefer the former, stay focused on to stay free of tobacco products and stay in control you must never take another puff!

Joel
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:59 pm

September 17th, 2005, 10:24 pm #79

Thanks Joel

Most appropriate for me today at Gold times three.

Gormo
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

October 17th, 2005, 10:38 pm #80

Being that I am bringing up a few posts relating to Peter Jenning's experience, I thought that this string seemed very appropriate to pop up. Peter Jennings had a 20 year quit that he lost during.

s it said in a Newsweek article just after the time of his death:
On April 5, 2005, he appeared, haggard and hoarse, for the for final time on television and explain what happened. "Yes, I was a smoker until about twenty years ago and I was weak and I smoked over 9/11." It is unclear how much he relapsed in the year since but he was still addicted and known to retreat into the bathroom for a furtive smoke. He began coughing and feeling fatigued last fall, but was not diagnosed until March. His cancer was inoperable, though he tried chemotherapy and experimental radiation.
Peter Jennings example here was the most high profile case I can remember of a famous person relapsing after being off for many years. No one should think though that this is a rare occurrence. At almost every clinic I do I will get multiple year quitters who relapsed, and people who are off for 5, 10, 15 or 20 year time periods are not uncommon. Since 2000 I had two people who were once off for over 35 years before relapsing.

No matter how long a person has been off, it is crucial that he or she understands that to continue to be able to stay off he or she must continue to stick to a personal commitment to never take another puff.

Joel
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Joined: December 19th, 2008, 12:04 am

February 15th, 2006, 7:44 am #81

Joel....thanks for pulling this one to the top today. For me, this concept is one of the most powerful doses of truth that I've learned here at Freedom.....I previously lost a 4 and 1/2 year quit by not understanding this fundamental principle. But yesterday when I conquered one of my strongest craves during this quit, I did it by reminding myself that

"Your options are to smoke nothing or to smoke everything"

And in my mind I could just see that nasty picture of all the butts overflowing the ashtray. NTAP.
So simple and so important. Thanks!!

Cindy

I have been quit for 1 Month, 1 Week, 6 Days, 6 hours and 44 minutes. I have saved $166.04 by not smoking 1,107 cigarettes. I have saved 3 Days, 20 hours and 15 minutes of my life.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

March 11th, 2006, 1:27 am #82

Thanks for this Joel,
I was taking a walk this morning and thought about a cigarette. I felt aggravated that I had the thought and wondered if I would still be having these thoughts twenty years from now. However, I reasoned that I only have these thoughts once or twice a day now (after only three weeks of being nicotine free) as opposed to the constant thought of wanting to quit for who knows how many years. Even if I have to have one or two craves a day for the rest of my life, it is worth the trade of never being addicted to nicotine again. You are, so right when you say NTAP.

Kristie - Free and Healing for Twenty One Days, 14 Hours and 56 Minutes, while extending my life expectancy 1 Day and 12 Hours, by avoiding the use of 432 nicotine delivery devices that would have cost me $70.12.
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Joined: January 7th, 2009, 7:15 pm

June 4th, 2006, 11:21 am #83

Thanks Joel for this post. You are right - there are only two choices, to smoke all or to smoke none. I choose none. Brenda
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Joined: December 19th, 2008, 12:02 am

June 4th, 2006, 6:51 pm #84

Thanks for this post I am going for lunch with my prtner who is a smoker and this is an excellent reminder that I am an addict who has no wish to be ruled by nicotine again!
I have been quit for 2 Months, 3 Weeks, 1 Day, 5 hours, 50 minutes and 51 seconds (83 days). I have saved £216.43 by not smoking 832 cigarettes. I have saved 2 Days, 21 hours and 20 minutes of my life. My Quit Date: 13/03/2006 06:00
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

June 4th, 2006, 8:38 pm #85

For Mary:

My guess is that lots of the people in these examples had reached the point that they "almost" never thought about smoking anymore. The operative word here is "almost." Obviously, one day they did and being that they had not had to talk themselves out of taking a puff in a long time, they were unprepared when a thought came out of nowhere. That lack of preparation cost them their quits, and in some cases, it may very well have ended up costing them their lives.

The more you can reinforce your memory of why you quit and why you wish to stay off is to continue to read and remind yourself of why you first quit and why you should still be committed to never take another puff.

Joel
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

August 13th, 2006, 11:45 pm #86

My guess is that lots of the people in these examples had reached the point that they "almost" never thought about smoking anymore. The operative word here is "almost." Obviously, one day they did and being that they had not had to talk themselves out of taking a puff in a long time, they were unprepared when a thought came out of nowhere. That lack of preparation cost them their quits, and in some cases, it may very well have ended up costing them their lives.

The more you can reinforce your memory of why you quit and why you wish to stay off is to continue to read and remind yourself of why you first quit and why you should still be committed to never take another puff.

Joel
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Joined: December 19th, 2008, 1:30 am

August 17th, 2006, 3:59 am #87

Nicotine will always be in controll if given even one little puff. You can not be in control once you start to play with it, The only way to controll nicotine is not to use ANY.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

April 15th, 2007, 1:47 pm #88

Nicotine is nicotine is nicotine. Nicotine is stronger than you are, it has controlled you for years and maybe even decades. Even though you knew it was harming you and possibly killing you, nicotine made you keep delivering it over and over again day by day. You will not win this battle by being stronger than it, you will win it by being smarter than it. Use your intellect in this effort. Know your enemy inside and out. To stay in control, give up the idea that you can control nicotine. You can't control quantity.

Your options are to smoke nothing or to smoke everything.

This translates to you can stop delivering nicotine and live, or deliver it once and use it over and over again till it cripples and kills you. If you prefer the former, stay focused on to stay free of tobacco products and stay in control you must never take another puff!

Joel
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

July 23rd, 2007, 9:08 pm #89

Your options are to smoke nothing or to smoke everything.

Simply choose none - only for the rest of today.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

September 25th, 2007, 11:44 am #90

"What Your Mind Can First Conceive, Begin To Believe, You Can Achieve!" from Roger-Gold 5 years
I do believe, I can achieve, with my mind saying; to never taking another puff.
Star- 73 days healing
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

November 20th, 2007, 11:38 am #91

"I'm not going to smoke today!" During the quitting process, you most likely woke up thinking of this concept, either with great determination or incredible trepidation. Either way, it was imperative that you aimed a high degree of focus at this lofty goal. The incredible cravings elicited by the addiction required that you had all the motivation and ammunition to squelch the seemingly irresistible need to take a cigarette. Whether or not you understood it, immediately reaffirming your goal not to smoke upon waking was crucial during your initial quitting phase.

The fact is, restating the simple concept of "not smoking today" is not only important when you first quit. You should restate this upon waking for the rest of your life. Each day you should start with "I'm not going to smoke today." Equally important, each day you should end congratulating yourself and feeling a sense of pride and accomplishment for achieving your worthwhile goal.

For even years and decades after successful cessation, every day you continue to breath and think a relapse to smoking is an inherent risk. The addiction to nicotine is as powerful as the addiction to alcohol or any illicit drug. The habituation of smoking permeated almost every area of your day to day existence. You may allow complacency to fill the void left by your old addiction and habits by disregarding the monumental effort and achievement which accompanied overcoming them. Complacency causes your guard to drop and you may begin to forget the reasons you wanted to quit. You will no longer recognize the many vast improvements in the quality of your physical, social and economic well being which accompanied smoking cessation.

Then, one day when smoking seemed to be a part of an obscure past which had no real relevance to your current status, a thought for a cigarette is accompanied by an opportunity to "innocently" reach for one. Maybe it is under an insignificant social circumstance, or maybe a major life crisis. Either way, all the elements seem to be in place. Motive, cause and opportunity are present, reasoning and knowledge of addiction are conspicuously absent. A puff is taken.

New rules are now in place. Your body demands nicotine. A preordained process is now set in motion, and, even if you don't realize what has happened, a drug relapse has occurred. The wants and desire to take back the action are overpowered by the body's demand for nicotine. You will have no control of the physiological process set in action. Soon your mind bows to your body's dictates.

You will very likely feel great regret and remorse. An overriding feeling of failure and guilt will haunt you. You will soon find yourself longing for the days when you had hardly thought of cigarettes at all. But those days will slowly become a fading past image. Weeks, months or even decades may pass before you once again musters the resolve to attempt a serious quitting process. Sadly, you may never again have the appropriate strength, initial motivation, or, tragically, the opportunity to quit again. A terminal diagnosis or sudden death may preclude the well-intentioned future attempt that may never have a chance to be realized.

Don't take the chance of becoming entrapped in this kind of tragic and dismal scenario. Actively strive to successfully remain smoke free and maintain all the associated perks-the physical, emotional, economic, professional and social benefits of not being an active smoker. Always start your day off with the statement "I won't smoke today." Always end your day with a self-affirmation and sense of pride and accomplishment for once again winning your daily battle over your addiction. And always remember between your waking up and the ending of your day to Never Take Another Puff!

Joel
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

February 14th, 2008, 9:46 pm #92

You can't simply 'lose' your Freedom from nicotine.
You - and only you - must first decide  to give it away.
Freedom from nicotine is a priceless gift that we give ourselves.
Choose to retain your Freedom by never taking another puff.......and be free.
Last edited by JoeJFree Gold on August 3rd, 2011, 8:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

May 26th, 2008, 9:51 am #93

From above:

From: Joel. Sent: 1/26/2003 10:20 PM

I saw where a new member wrote that she was getting intimidated by reading about all of our lost long-term quits. I think she might have read this thread. Please look at the original dates of this thread, it refers to what Freedom was like when we didn't have our current policies in place. People did indeed relapse in numbers. That does not happen anymore because we have got our membership understanding from the day they join that the only way they can keep their membership, and more importantly, the only way they can keep their quit is to stay 100% committed to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joined: January 10th, 2009, 1:37 am

December 31st, 2008, 1:19 pm #94

this post needs to be up top for the holidays.i have to get up every morning and tell myself no nicotene today.i always go to bed at nite thankfull i am still free from nicotene.everybody have a great new year and ntap.ed 10 weeks free from nicotene
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Joined: January 15th, 2011, 6:31 pm

February 9th, 2011, 6:37 pm #95

One that scares me , but makes me remember to keep my guard up and NTAP
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Joined: May 18th, 2012, 3:22 pm

May 19th, 2012, 7:46 pm #96

I relapsed after approximately 7 years quit, I thought I could do it, be a 'social smoker'.  I didnt think of smoking all the other cigarettes, just the one I 'wanted' at that time (a new year party).  I can understand why people may be disheartened by peoples stories of relapse, but I think like Joel says, we can learn from them, so I really think it is scary and if this is your first quit learn from those of us who have failed before and NEVER TAKE ANOTHER PUFF.  It is easy to become complacent after a few years of a quit, you think you couldnt possibly be hooked! You have quit for this long one little smoke isnt going to set you back again!  IT DOES!  all the way back.  Something which is really helping me this time is 'yes I want one, but I DONT want all the others that go with it, no thanks!'  Dont be to proud to learn from other people

Suquimby
4days 21hrs 45mins 49 not smoked £15.91 not spent!
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Joined: July 3rd, 2013, 2:10 pm

August 12th, 2013, 8:07 pm #97

After 18 years of smoking 2 packs of Lucky Strikes a day I quit for 20 years and took one puff in 2000. I smoked again for 13 years 1 - 1 1/2 packs, filters this time. I thought after 20 years I could just be a social smoker, or at least just see what it was like, never thinking I would "revert" back to the old "habit". Well I learned it was more than a habit and that I was an addict, and that was the proof. The last 13 years I have wanted to quit, I tried many times, it seemed harder. I found this Freedom website through the YouTube videos by Joel while searching on line for quitting smoking "tips". Through my own experience, this website and Joel's videos I have been armed and educated. I will  never take another puff because I now know that I am an addict for life and 1 cigarette = all.

I quit nicotine 7 weeks and 2 days ago with the help of Freedom and all the education and posts I found and have been reading here. Every day is so much easier. I have gone more than half a day without even thinking of a cigarette, and when I do the thought is usually about surprising myself that I have not thought of one, no craves but occassionaly a want which I immediately throw out. I used to think of smoking every 20 minutes or so. I like not smoking better, plus I feel richer! 
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Joined: August 31st, 2013, 8:23 pm

September 20th, 2013, 2:50 pm #98

I'm 40 + days into my quit. I think it's the longest I've ever gone without a smoke in my 35 years of the addiction. In this thread I found what I needed to see as it relates to relapsing. Thanks for the letter Joel and to all the folks before me who give me the inspiration to carry on.

Ben
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Joined: October 21st, 2013, 5:23 am

November 16th, 2013, 6:07 am #99

I like Ben above am in the second month of my quit (by a wiska!). In my many previous attempts I could never manage even 24 hours! I am finding that I reinforce my quit every morning when I wake up because the thought of being Nicotine free excites me and the thought of the prospect of losing my quit would destroy me. I mean seriously if I could convince myself on more than 50 instances over the last 40 years to take another puff within 24 hours of giving up I would have to be insane to let this achievement be destroyed!
Frank - NTAP
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Joined: September 25th, 2013, 4:35 am

November 16th, 2013, 11:26 pm #100

I too am entering my 2nd month (today) without nicotine.  I realised a couple of days ago that I had gone a whole day without a crave. That was amazing.  This morning I nearly forgot to renew my daily vow to NEVER TAKE ANOTHER PUFF! So I thought it was time to check in and get some reinforcement.  I need to keep remembering how awful it was to be a slave to my addiction, so that I can continue to enjoy this wonderful FREEDOM that I have been experiencing for the past one month, twenty nine days and 24 minutes. I am more grateful than words can express for Joel's videos, the Whyquit.com website, this Freedom message board & all the people who have walked this path before me and left behind their wisdom and encouragement.
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