New reactions to anger as an ex-smoker

The emotions that flow from nicotine cessation
Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

April 23rd, 2001, 8:52 pm #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: January 7th, 2009, 8:32 pm

June 16th, 2001, 1:20 pm #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: December 19th, 2008, 12:00 am

June 16th, 2001, 4:43 pm #23

Joel.. YES..... thank you ..as always!
yqs Maz
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

June 16th, 2001, 7:16 pm #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: December 19th, 2008, 12:00 am

June 26th, 2001, 7:08 pm #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: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

September 14th, 2001, 7:19 pm #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: December 18th, 2008, 11:44 pm

December 19th, 2001, 8:49 am #27

Well that sure was enlightening! Thanks!
Chris
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Joined: January 7th, 2009, 8:32 pm

January 26th, 2002, 10:23 am #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: December 18th, 2008, 11:58 pm

February 1st, 2002, 3:09 pm #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: December 18th, 2008, 11:59 pm

February 1st, 2002, 3:19 pm #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: December 18th, 2008, 11:58 pm

February 1st, 2002, 6:31 pm #31

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

Slainte
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Joined: January 7th, 2009, 7:51 pm

March 6th, 2002, 3:46 am #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: January 7th, 2009, 8:32 pm

April 10th, 2002, 9:59 pm #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: January 7th, 2009, 8:32 pm

April 25th, 2002, 8:57 pm #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: December 18th, 2008, 11:58 pm

April 25th, 2002, 9:24 pm #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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Joined: January 7th, 2009, 6:58 pm

July 28th, 2002, 4:11 am #36

Joel,

What a great article. Anger has been one of the scariest emotions for me to feel when I don't have nicotine. I do exactly what the article states when I was smoking and then wondered why I let my past relationship go on and on (duh). I even had myself thinking that I had to have nicotine or else I won't be able to handle anger in a relationship. How unhealthy. Looking back I think I made poor choices in men and tolerated them by using nicotine. I can't completely blame the nicotine because I made a choice to date that person but it certainly alleviated uncomfortable feelings.

Smoking has definitely kept my mind occupied and helped me to put my real feelings on the side and out of sight just to appease a situation. And your right it all came out anyway, just in a different form.

You have no idea how grateful I am for all of these wonderful articles I have been reading over the past few days........truly, you are an amazing group of people.......thank you

Joy
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:58 pm

September 6th, 2002, 2:46 am #37

For Sharon and Alegra!

Embrace the rebirth of feeling!
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Joined: January 7th, 2009, 8:32 pm

September 6th, 2002, 8:21 am #38

Thank you so much for this Alyson. This is exactly how I have been feeling! It is nice to know that it is something a lot of people go through when they choose to stop smoking!
Alegra
I have chosen not to smoke for 1 Week 4 Days 7 Hours 21 Minutes 23 Seconds. Cigarettes not smoked: 339. Money saved: $54.27.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

December 10th, 2002, 9:47 pm #39

In case you ever found yourself saying or thinking, "I can't deal with this...I have to go smoke!" This one explains a big part of why that particular feeling occurred.
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Joined: December 19th, 2008, 12:03 am

February 10th, 2003, 1:32 am #40

Thank you Joel for this. Lena 2 months 5 days
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:59 pm

February 10th, 2003, 2:05 am #41

I can SO relate to this. But at least NOW I can understand why after reading this awesome article, whereas I thought I was going nuts before.

I feel like one of those motorcycles. You know, the ones that go from 0-60 in 15 seconds (or whatever it is)....only substitute going from complete calm to pure rage in 15 seconds LOL. And over the simplest things sometimes too. I have a question though...I know this is normal for the reasons explained in the post, but how long does it last ? Will it always be this way, in other words ? I HOPE not !

Lazuli

Quit Proud For 3 Weeks 10 Hours 19 Minutes 2 Seconds!
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:59 pm

March 11th, 2003, 2:39 pm #42

this is the second time i have read this article and like lazuli i can totally identify. it is appropriate that is has come up again, stange how that happens.
i smoked my feelings - and poof they were gone, or, buried deep in my lungs somewhere. now that they are here and hanging aroung to be felt i am not quite sure what to do with them, but i hope i will learn. its a bit overwhelming sometimes.
nadette
8 days
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

January 13th, 2004, 8:55 pm #43

Smoking nicotine never relieved any underlying stressful event
but
only replaced its own absence
Within 10 days to 2 weeks of ending all nicotine use
the mind has adjusted to functioning without nicotine.
Smoking nicotine after 10 days to 2 weeks
  1. Still won't resolve any underlying stressful event
  2. Will no longer replace a needed missing chemical
  3. Will not match your mind's memory expectations
  4. But will commence the onset of full and complete relapse
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Joined: December 19th, 2008, 12:33 am

February 26th, 2004, 6:44 pm #44

Hi Joel,

Thanks again for your great library. No matter what is going on with me i can always find the answer in your library or old threads.

Laurie
One month, three weeks, four days, 5 hours, 9 minutes and 18 seconds. 1686 cigarettes not smoked, saving $231.89. Life saved: 5 days, 20 hours, 30 minutes.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

April 12th, 2004, 9:18 pm #45

Healthy Neurochemical Reactions to Life
Nicotine's two-hour half-life inside the human body was the basic clock that not only set the deadline for that next mandatory feeding but also which feedings we'd consider our "best."
Imagine sleeping through four nicotine half-lives (8 hours) and awaking the next morning with our nicotine level somewhere down around our socks. No wonder that morning fix was one of the "best." Although the clock could not be slowed, acid generating events such as stress, anxiety, alcohol and mega doses of vitamin C could accelerate the clock by more rapidly depleting the body's reserves of the alkaloid nicotine. Such events would more rapidly transport us to the brink of onset of early withdrawal. No wonder we made such deep rooted yet false conclusions about nicotine's relationship to stress and alcohol. No wonder these groups of feeding memories are some of our "best!"
Living life on nicotine's clock totally ignored our body's own natural and healthy neurochemical timetables. As you've probably read here at Freedom, nicotine caused the brain to release stores of adrenaline and noradrenaline that prepared our body for the fight or flight survival mode. An amazing cascade of fight or flight neurochemicals would temporarily shut down all non-essential systems and functions, constrict extremity blood vessels to help control any bleeding during battle or escape, accelerate the heartbeat to pump greater volumes of blood, stimulate the lungs to process more oxygen, would heighten the senses, and dump stored fats and sugars into the bloodstream to provide an instant source of energy. Question: Is that what our body really needed when life's moment begged for deep deep relaxation like just before climbing into bed to sleep?
Recovery can be a wonderful adventure in self-discovery as we begin to appreciate that our body's neurochemicals each had purpose and their flow had natural controls, controls that, by coincidence, the chemical nicotine was able to completely bypass. Was it time for a nicotine induced dopamine ahhhhh reward sensation upon learning the tragic news of the death of a close friend or loved one? Was it then time to smoke a chemical that would diminish the flow of serotonin, a mood and critical anxiety busting neurochemical?
All that matter are the next few moments and each is entirely doable. The accomplishment induced dopamine ahhhhh sensation resting just beyond that next challenge is not only yours to enjoy, it's "you," it's beautiful, and it's an honest message that this recovery is a keeper. You're going home! There was always only one rule, no nicotine today - Never Take Another Puff! John
Last edited by John (Gold) on March 3rd, 2009, 5:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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