New reactions to anger as an ex-smoker

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

10 Nov 2000, 19:46 #11

Hello April:

Your one lesson learned in your last sentence (actually two lessons, you can live through anything and you will stay off as long as you never take another puff) is really all you really need to know. Other information is supportive of your decision, but these two concepts are the real key to understanding you can live without smoking and how to keep that life for as long as you choose. You learned your lessons well April. You get an A+ from me today. For everyone to pass this course all they need to do is never take another puff!

Joel
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

29 Dec 2000, 22:29 #12

Here Tessa:

This one talks about anger and depression, but the same premise applies to other feelings too, how when smoking you pulled yourself away from situations, maybe feeling better but never really addressing the feelings or issues and never really resolving them.

While this may result in pent up anger in some situations, maybe it was resulting in unresolved feelings in other areas of your life that are now surfacing. Maybe for the first time in a long time you will be able to resolve some issues that you didn't even know still existed. While it is hard to come to points like that in your life, the payoff can be fantasitic. For even though you may not have recognized the existence of some of these issues, they were likely taking an emotional toll and you would have no idea how they would have eventually manifested.

If you find other areas of your life that now need addressing, you may want to find help to address those feelings. Or this may just be some transient reaction to triggers from the recent quit. Either way, there are mechanisms to help you through either situation. Personal growth is not easy, but stunting personal growth is a loss of your ability to reach your true potential of life.

Hang in there Tessa. While it may not always seem like it at any given moment, quitting is worth the payoff. Just heep giving it a little more time.

Joel

Joel
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:05

29 Dec 2000, 22:46 #13

YES, THIS DOES HELP ME ALSO...I REALLY HAVE TO GUARD AGAINST "STUFFING MY FEELINGS" AND NOW I KNOW TO BE ON ALERT THE NEXT TIME I'M ANNOYED. IT'S SORT OF LIKE BEING ABLE TO HEAR AND SEE PAST THE EMOTIONAL "SURF" NOW. WILL HAVE TO THINK SOME MORE ON THIS ONE. IN A WAY THIS FITS IN WITH ZEP'S POST ON THE HOME PAGE YESTERDAY..USING BOTH TOGETHER GIVES ME MORE BALANCE ON THAT EMOTIONAL "SURFBOARD"...LOL
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 20:32

05 Jan 2001, 09:31 #14

Thank you Joel, it realy does help to read and understand what the heck our minds and bodies are doing. I am very new here but your obvious dedication to this site makes it a lot easier for all of us newbies to yell scream complain and generally vent our feelings. Everyone here is very supportive and welcoming. Thank you all.
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:50

21 Feb 2001, 21:55 #15

unknowingly, but still for me...thank you, Joel
-Cristy
I have been FREE from cigarettes for 6D 9h 38m 11s. I have NOT smoked 224 cigarettes, saving myself $33.61. I have added 18h 40m to my life.
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:03

23 Feb 2001, 08:18 #16

WOW! Reading this, was an eye-opener! I have a much better understanding now, of how I work...thank you, Joel!
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 18:58

17 Mar 2001, 22:30 #17

this is good stuff. thank you. I have lost many quits due to anger/miscommunication etc.
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:13

26 Mar 2001, 06:12 #18

Thanks Joel. Wish I had read this sooner.
Jen
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 18:59

04 Apr 2001, 12:09 #19

Hi Joel,
Thanks for the best working definition of HAPPY that I've ever seen:
"Happy means you are satisfied with at least one decision or activity you did that day." -Joel Spitzer

You are the first person to ever talk to me about what happy is and isn't in real down-to-earth practical ways that I can understand and apply. Ivory towers of lovely words are mere bric-a-brac to be dusted. But I like your definition because I can tell with it where I stand with myself.
Lots of well-meaning folks have labeled me as a perfectionist and suggested how destructive that pattern is. And I know that it is partly rooted in a set of unrealistic expectations, whether too high or too low for any given set of circumstances, unrealistic is unrealistic.
This definition allows me to be happy with myself.I took a very satisfing walk with a hyperactive yellow labrador retriever named Luau, and a man named Husband Wonderful. I did not take a puff today. It was my decision and I'm satisfied with it. Ergo, I'm happy.
Victoria.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

04 Apr 2001, 20:51 #20

Hello Victoria:

I am "happy" the definition made you happy. I didn't even remember writing it and had to go back to look at what you were referring to. But your finding it helpful in self understanding and in a little way helping to secure your quit did bring a smile to my face. So for that I hope you feel a little extra happiness today too.

Talk to you soon.

Joel
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

23 Apr 2001, 20:52 #21

For Phoenix:

This string addresses dealing with anger, but the same concepts apply to other emotions too. Thought it would give a little more understanding of using tobacco in your masking of emotions post in general.

Joel
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 20:32

16 Jun 2001, 13:20 #22

Hi...This is my first post I'm a new member as of today. THIS SITE IS AWESOME its helped me beyond belief over the last month YES MONTH exactly a month today SMOKE FREE... and i love it... and i could not have done it without reading and reading and reading from this site. I have a question.... maybe to Joel.? (as i said its my first post not sure who i direct it to). Question: Overall doing EXCELLENT weight control...craves while having a few beers etc etc. Not severe but I actually have mood swings . I go from happy and content that Im not smoking one day to kinda like sad the next like I lost a friend. Once again ONE MONTH TODAY... are these feelings normal cause i really think I have control of this thing this quit COLD TURKEY IS THE WAY TO GO. THANKS SO MUCH
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Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:00

16 Jun 2001, 16:43 #23

Joel.. YES..... thank you ..as always!
yqs Maz
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

16 Jun 2001, 19:16 #24

Hello Bobby:

Yes it is not uncommon for people to have the kind of mood swings you are describing. As you encounter different triggers, associated memories can incorporate bringing a person down. But when realizing that you have for the first time in years taken the upper hand over nicotine, and really recognize the Freedom you have attained, you can feel a great sense of pride and accomplishment.

Don't be alarmed at the bad moments. The trick is in those minutes or seconds to focus on how you would feel about being a full-fledged smoker again. If you think about one or two cigarettes you will feel deprived. If you think about smoking in its entirety, not just in the sense of the old quantity but the problems and long-term implications that go with it, you will generally be able to lessen the time you feel the loss of a friend feeling and maybe be able to snap yourself out of it all together.

One other issue I should point out. Not all happy or sad moods experienced one month post quit are actually caused by not smoking. People who never smoked a day in their life also have up and down days. Weather can be a strong external variable factoring into these feelings, as well as many other situations we have faced in the past or are currently facing which may have their own influences on triggering memories or moods. Everyone must be careful not to assume smoking or not smoking is the cause of all feelings, all though at one month it probably still have its fair share.

Either way, if quitting is responsible or not, general moods will swing over a lifetime. But if an ex-smoker remembers smoking the way it was at the end, or considers where smoking was leading him or her to if he or she did not quit, the overall mood when regarding quitting will be one of thankfulness and self-gratitude. You have done yourself a favor by quitting. As long as you don't lose sight of this you will be happier and healthier. To help secure both improvements in your mental and physical health always remember to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:00

26 Jun 2001, 19:08 #25

Thank you Joel, so very true and I understand that tears of mine much better now.
And even if I cry for many days to come that is fine - I am alive, I am healthy and
I will never take another puff.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

14 Sep 2001, 19:19 #26

I suspect anger is going to be a real issue with many people as time progresses here. But look at the national polls and realize anger is being felt by the majority of the U.S. and in fact, a high percentage of the world population. Ex-smokers, never-smokers and current smokers are all going to be feeling it. Smokers are just going to feel worse, because instead of just feeling the anger of the day--they are also feeling increased nicotine withdrawal on top of the anger. I can't say our ex-smokers are not going to be angry--but I can say that they won't ever experience withdrawal on top of anger as long as they never take another puff!

Joel
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:44

19 Dec 2001, 08:49 #27

Well that sure was enlightening! Thanks!
Chris
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 20:32

26 Jan 2002, 10:23 #28

Thanks Joel & FREEDOM!

I really needed to hear this one!

Until I came to FREEDOM, I had no idea how many ways this drug called "NICOTINE" adversely affected my entire body! Now I find out it even made my urine react & what's worse is that I have been "In major denial" concerning many personal issues that I have been dealing with for a long, long, time! I did have a "junky way of thinking" by putting off dealing with things & smoking instead.

It sounds like I may have a few encounters ahead that I am going to have to be fully armed for. So...I will keep on reading, posting & learning hear at FREEDOM to help protect my quit. I have so much to learn!

I have been nicotine free for: 1 Month 2 Weeks 5 Days 23 Hours 4 Minutes 37 Seconds. I have NOT smoked 764 sickarettes, for a savings of $144.47. Life Saved: 2 Days 15 Hours 40 Minutes.

Thank you FREEDOM Joel for helping me get this far!

~Zipper~
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:58

01 Feb 2002, 15:09 #29

How 'bout that. Y'know, I read this yonks ago, and filed it away. It didn't seem that important at the time. But, once again, I find that Joel knows. Tonight, I'm passing through the pub -- had just dropped the car off at the garage across the street, and I'm heading home. I see the dart-buddies inside, and pop in for hello, and end up staying for a couple of quick games. I've gotta get home to get some work done, so I don't want to stay too long. There's a new guy there that I haven't met. He's friends with the other guys though.

So, we're playing away, and the new guy seems to be talking a lot. AND it's getting worse. And he's getting really opinionated. And he's jumping from one subject to the next, and not listening to responses to the extent that when somebody agreed with him, he misinterpreted it, and felt the need to state his case for whatever the immediate cause was in even louder and lengthier diatribes.

And I find myself getting really really really really annoyed. Now, I'm pretty much a world champion listener. Usually, because I like to hear what other people are saying, but I'll listen even if they're killing me with boredom. In the latter case, in the past, I've always turned to tobacco. The monologues would turn into, "blah blah blah puff, whooooh, blah blah blah puff, ****, whooooh." The longer they went on, and the less I was permitted to say, the more I would just **** in that deadly stuff. Sometimes I would use the cigs as an excuse for actual geographic avoidance. The talker is inside, "excuse me, gotta go feed the addiction", the smoker's outside, "looks like the cigs done, and I'm cold, see you inside."

So, tonight, it's like there's no escape. Now, I didn't realise at the time what was going on. I had no idea why I was getting so tremendously annoyed and angry. I finally bowed out politely (when a pause in the speech permitted), and drove home in a huge temper. Only later, when in the shower, trying to gain back my sanity, did I remember this article, and I'm able to learn, yet again.

Read it and remember it when you find yourself getting absolutely furious over something that you never faced before, and might not have considered more than a minor annoyance.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:59

01 Feb 2002, 15:19 #30

Hi, OBob! Noticed that you JUST posted so I wanted to say hello, tell you congratulations on your continued quit, and tell you how I find your messages delightful.
Cheers!
YQS Mary
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:58

01 Feb 2002, 18:31 #31

Thanks Mary. Looking forward to hopping on that green bus with you!

Slainte
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:51

06 Mar 2002, 03:46 #32

Joel, you are awesome! Again, I learn something very, very interesting and very pertinent to what is happening with me. Looks like it's time to be facing some issues instead of hiding. I'm not looking forward to it but I know that I will grow as a person when it happens. Keep the info coming!

Felicia
I have chosen not to smoke for 2 Weeks 14 Hours 45 Minutes 20 Seconds.
I've reclaimed 2 Days 42 Mins 57 Secs of my life.
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 20:32

10 Apr 2002, 21:59 #33

Joel,
Thanks so much for everything! Thanks especially for recommending to join this site. Today is day 8 free of nicotine.

I think the biggest challenges I am going to face are going to be dealing with stress and emotional triggers. These posts are all very helpful.

Thanks again,

Photini
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 20:32

25 Apr 2002, 20:57 #34

Hi Joel, I just wanted to thank you for the latest article about anger. I was just discussing with my friend yesterday about how vocal I've become since I quit smoking. Usually I'm very quiet, lately though I've been challenging everyone about everything. Now I know why,I've held some of this stuff in for years and it's finally coming out. No knockdown drag out fights just finally asserting myself and not letting people take advantage of me anymore. Thanks!
Carol
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:58

25 Apr 2002, 21:24 #35

Hi Carol, I am glad this article helped you along. You certainly are not alone on this issue. Since I quit smoking my candor has been on the rise. A few folks around me were a bit taken back at first. This new found assertiveness has to be a bit more healthy, we are once again in touch with our true feelings - no more smoking them away. Those around us know just where they stand now - if it happens to be on our toes, we let them know it hurts. Some of us haven't been in touch with these feelings for so long and have to adjust. Some of us find ourselves in a bit of trouble during that adjustment period (LOL) but that may not be a bad thing. You just hold on tight and be proud for giving yourself such a wonderful gift. Quitting smoking really is quite a journey, embrace the process and be proud. You are well on your way.

It gets better and better....keep up the good work.

Never take another puff...no matter what.

Joanne
3 plus years
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