"I guess I am doing OK, I just smoked one yesterday"

Joel
Joel

November 17th, 2000, 6:50 pm #1

Joel's Reinforcement Library

"I guess I am doing OK"

"Well, I guess I am doing OK. I took a cigarette yesterday. I don't know why. I'm just not sure what I want to do yet." This comment came from a twenty-five year, two pack a day smoker, who had quit three weeks earlier. He couldn't tell why he took the cigarette. It wasn't under stress or at a party. He was just sitting home and wanted one. So he took it. No big deal, right. Wrong--DEAD WRONG.

This man would not accept the fact of his addiction. While his initial comments indicated that possibly he did not want to stop, further inquiries demonstrated this man really wanted to stay off. I asked him if he really wished to go back to 40 cigarettes a day. He said "No way, I never want to smoke that way again. But I still want a cigarette every now and then.

Every ex-smoker faces the same dilemma as this man. The desire for one, repulsed by the idea of smoking at the old level. But under the laws of addiction, smoking is an all or nothing proposition. Due to his addiction there is no such thing as one. While he may not have been sure of whether or not he wished to stay off cigarettes, he was positive that he did not want to go back to his old level. Since he did not wish to smoke two packs a day, taking this first cigarette was a mistake.

Within a short time he was again smoking at his old level. To this day, almost three years later, he is still hooked on cigarettes. If you ever question your resolve about staying an ex-smoker, consider the alternative--smoking at your old level, or even possibly more than you used to before you quit.

Viewing smoking like this probably doesn't seem appealing to you. But no matter how much you desire never to smoke that way again, you will lose all choice over the matter if you experiment with a cigarette. The addiction controlled you once. It will control you again. And this time, you may never be able to break its powerful grip. Don't take that chance. NEVER TAKE ANOTHER PUFF!
Last edited by Joel on September 5th, 2009, 12:52 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Joel
Joel

February 15th, 2001, 8:11 pm #2

I've been doing quite a bit of local phone counseling the last few days and inviting people to whyquit and freedom for support. One man in particular needed this one. Hopefully, no one else here does. But I saw in a string by Zep yesterday where people were being encouraged to invite in new people or at least talk to smokers and help educate them whether they come in or not. I suspect that many of these people can benefit from this particular letter. The topic here that I think most of our regular membership can see through as being an obvious flaw in a smoker's logic, in fact is not as obvious to an uneducated quitter.

People need to understand that they are not fighting a million cigarettes, or a case, a carton, a pack or even one cigarette, but that in fact they are fighting a puff. Don't take for granted that others understand this concept, you would be surprised how revolutionary the idea will be to some people. I have an advantage when I meet people, I can bring up the man from my last group who was off for 15 years and then relapsed, or the woman who was off 35 years before going back, or the hundreds of others who had over a decade under their belt before such a tragic event occurred. You may feel that you don't know such people, but they exist. Maybe even some of them are here now and would like to elaborate on the issue.

Well if a cigarette can put a person back after decades, guess what it can do to a person who has been off days, weeks or months. This point needs to be understood by all if they are ever going to succeed. So share the message with all who want to listen. Sharing will help them in their quits and help you reinforce yours. You can be a teacher and you can be a role model, the lesson plan for today, tomorrow and every day following is if you want to stay smoke free you must understand that you can never take another puff!

Joel
Last edited by Joel on September 5th, 2009, 12:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
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MareBear GOLD
MareBear GOLD

January 15th, 2003, 11:41 pm #3

Hope nobody minds that I pulled this up. For my lurker friend "S" who will take the plunge and succeed! It's doable sweetums!

MareBear
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Joel
Joel

July 7th, 2003, 6:31 pm #4

Joel's Video and Audio
Quit Smoking Lessons

Video Title
Dial-Up
HS/BB
Audio
MP3
"I want one!" 5.36mb 0.78mb 1.01mb 5.36mb 0.78mb 2.48mb
Last edited by Joel on September 5th, 2009, 1:21 am, edited 2 times in total.
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John (Gold)
John (Gold)

December 26th, 2003, 11:44 pm #5

This ...
.... produces thousands of ashtrays that look like this ...
... if the 50% risk that smoking will kill you doesn't arrive first!
Last edited by John (Gold) on September 6th, 2009, 4:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
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BushCreekDudeGoldX4
BushCreekDudeGoldX4

December 26th, 2003, 11:59 pm #6

How about this ashtray:

Right on John.
Last edited by BushCreekDudeGoldX4 on September 6th, 2009, 3:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Joel
Joel

February 23rd, 2004, 4:36 am #7

Last edited by Joel on September 6th, 2009, 4:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Joel
Joel

August 29th, 2004, 10:45 pm #8

A new member felt concerned because 17 days into a quit she was still having a tough time. She made the comment that she was "barely making it." The person in this story was working on a similar sentiment, that he too was doing okay because he was just "barely smoking."

Both assessments are wrong. If you stick to your commitment to not deliver nicotine today you are doing what you need to insure your quit is going to make it through the day, giving it the opportunity to get better and better over time.

If you were to just take a single puff you would not be "just barely" making it--you would have infact totally blown your quit and would be putting your health and likely your life at risk.

There are only two measurements here, success or failure. Success will continue to get easier if you work at keeping your ammunition strong of why you quit and why you want to stay off AND as long as you continue to stick with the commitment you made to yourself when you joined up with us to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joel
Joel

March 13th, 2005, 7:17 pm #9

Last edited by Joel on September 6th, 2009, 4:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)
GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)

June 16th, 2005, 10:23 pm #10

"If you were to just take a single puff you would not be "just barely" making it--you would have infact totally blown your quit and would be putting your health and likely your life at risk.

There are only two measurements here, success or failure. Success will continue to get easier if you work at keeping your ammunition strong of why you quit and why you want to stay off AND as long as you continue to stick with the commitment you made to yourself when you joined up with us to never take another puff!"
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Joel
Joel

July 25th, 2007, 8:49 pm #11

From above:

A new member felt concerned because 17 days into a quit she was still having a tough time. She made the comment that she was "barely making it." The person in this story was working on a similar sentiment, that he too was doing okay because he was just "barely smoking."

Both assessments are wrong. If you stick to your commitment to not deliver nicotine today you are doing what you need to insure your quit is going to make it through the day, giving it the opportunity to get better and better over time.

If you were to just take a single puff you would not be "just barely" making it--you would have in fact totally blown your quit and would be putting your health and likely your life at risk.

There are only two measurements here, success or failure. Success will continue to get easier if you work at keeping your ammunition strong of why you quit and why you want to stay off AND as long as you continue to stick with the commitment you made to yourself when you joined up with us to never take another puff!

Joel
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