No thank you, I can't have a cigarette

N MI RO
Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:57

04 Jun 2001, 06:12 #11

I'm not sure I'm sold on this reasoning. First off, it's got nothing to do with "proving that I'm stronger than cigarettes"; I never made any such claim. It's 100 percent clear that if I convince myself to smoke one, the jig is up. I'ts not about proving anything, but about making a pre-emptive strike certain kinds of "reasoning", e.g. "I can't smoke".

I think we're all familiar with the folks who do fine for a good while, and then stumble across a pack of smokes in a jacket or a drawer, and can't deal with the situation. It's not as though cigarettes aren't readily available if I somehow convince myself to smoke. If this turns into a situation where I can only succeed if I "avoid temptation", then I'm going to have to move to a cave.

Obviously, gluing the pack shut is not a serious deterrent to my deciding to smoke. But the effort I went to to add both inconvenience and "food for thought" serve the same purpose as your "safe time". Cigarettes are always "right there", for some pretty small value of "there". I can convince myself to hop in the car about as readily as I can convince myself to tear open a box of cigarettes, if I convince myself to smoke. We're dealing with this every day, aren't we? How is making that decision not to tear open the box any different from making the decision not to "bum one" off the kid you walk by on the street? Where's your "safe time" there?

What you're "missing", Mari, is that the cigarettes aren't there so I "can remember not to smoke". I remember every day why I don't want to smoke.
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

04 Jun 2001, 21:18 #12

Lefty, would your advice for an alcoholic in the first few days of quitting be to keep a bottle of booze in a safe to remind them not to use it, or even that a crack or heroin addict should keep a little stash in a taped up envelope as a reminder that they don't use anymore. When the right circumstances present themselves the person will more likely go for that supply.

Sometimes it is not possible to get rid of all available cigarettes. There are people here who have smokers in their homes who will in fact have cigarettes. But they are those other people's cigarettes. You are keeping your cigarettes, which means you are likely keeping alive the idea that you are a smoker who is not smoking rather than an ex-smoker who doesn't need cigarettes anymore. Ex-smokers, like never smokers don't keep cigarettes, there is no need to. As far as reminding yourself that you are choosing not to smoke, an empty pack would with the same note would accomplish that too. Actually, all you need is the note.

Again Lefty, it is not worth the risk. But lets stop debating it here. You are going to do what you want, but please don't try to influence others to follow your lead. I am going to attach a note here I sent to another person who was offering up alternative advice at the board. I think it will give everyone a sense of what we are trying to accomplish here at Freedom.

The message:

We really prefer that short term quitters feel they are here to learn more than here to teach. I know at most other sites an "anything goes" or "what ever works for you" kind of approach is the norm. Most places work with a hit or miss approach, "If this quit doesn't work, maybe the next one will kind of mentality."

We are different. We are set up to give focused suggestions and want things written here to be as accurate as possible. We try to offer up advice based on the experiences of thousands of long-term successful quitter, not of one or two people that a new member knows or has read about.

We don't want people establishing any early patterns or behaviors that reduce their chances of success. All members should make sure of what their reasons for being here at Freedom are. If you are just quitting smoking and are here to learn, great, you will get some great guidance. If you are just quitting smoking and feel the need to teach, your time will be better spent where people are looking for many different alternative approaches to quitting.

Our methods are quite pure and simple. It is to quit smoking you need to quit smoking. Then to stay off smoking it is simply to remember to never take another puff!

Joel
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John (Gold)
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

04 Jun 2001, 21:53 #13

Your "cigarettes are always right there" advice to Mari is quit threatening advice Lefty. Why leave them in the box? Why not walk around with it hanging from your lip or at least in your shirt pocket? If you ask a guy on the street for a smoke his box isn't glued shut. You're playing a drug addict's mind games and it could cost you not only your quit but your very life. If we were so darn good at quitting, Lefty, we wouldn't be in the early stages of doing it again.

If you were seriously suicidal would it help your healing to leave a loaded gun where you could always see it, because that is just what you are advocating that all quitters do. Oh sure, you'd put the safety on the gun (glue the box shut) but is that really an intelligent way to approach your mind's need for time to heal and adjust. By your reasoning, your justification for looking at the gun is so that "you can remember every day that you don't want to kill yourself." Oh really? It's ok for mentally healthy people to handle guns, Lefty, but you're not healthy yet. Give yourself some time to heal.
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

28 Jun 2001, 19:07 #14

Sorry that this string got cluttered with a prolonged debate, but the initial message is still good to reflect on. Even the debate had some important points brought out and clarified. Anyway, stay focused on the fact that you all now have a choice in regards to whether you smoke or not. As a smoker you had very little choice, nicotine called the shots for you. The more you consider the full implications of both ways of life, being an active smoker or being an ex-smoker the more likely it is that you will choose to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

17 Jul 2001, 19:54 #15

I saw where Linda Lu replied to a co-worker's request to go out and smoke with "I couldn't." From the way it was written I know she just meant to avoid a lengthy conversation about having quit and that of course is every individuals prerogative. But I hope everyone considers each such occurrence as a possible teaching moment.

When someone asks you if you want to go smoke, a simple answer of "I have chosen not to smoke anymore," or even better yet, "I'm through with smoking," or "I've finally beaten the nicotine addiction and plan on never going back to that deadly way of life," said with a big smile can have a powerful impact. Saying it with conviction and confidence and without a trace of remorse or regret will make the person know you are serious and happy with your decision. It will make them realize that you have gained controlled of something that up to that moment they believed was uncontrollable. It might just move them a little closer to quitting themselves, or at least helping them know that you are a resource when they are ready to quit.

Please know that every member here has a better understanding of the nicotine addiction and its treatment than most other people on this planet. There is a total lack of understanding of the nicotine addiction with really bad information and advice given by many people in regards to how to quit and how to stay off. If you can share a fraction of the information we have shared with you can possibly help save the lives of people around you. Consider helping a smoker in need, and know that in fact every smoker you encounter is a smoker in need. They are in need of understanding and in need of hope. You can all supply a little of both.

Share with them your satisfaction that you had quit and share with them how you did it. To borrow a saying from AA, "To keep it, you have to give it away." Sharing your understanding helps the other person but at the same time helps reinforce your own resolve and your own memory of what you have done by quitting and why it is still so important. So consider sharing with people when given the opportunity. Most important, share with them the all important message that once a person quits, the trick to stay off for the long-term is that they know to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

06 Jan 2002, 21:31 #16

Well, many of our New Year quitters are going to be approaching their first week smoke free now. The trick in quitting the first few days is just not smoking, no matter how good or how bad you are feeling. Now it gets more tricky. To sustain a quit it is important to work on the basis that you are happy not to be smoking. That entails working to develop a mindset that you are not depriving yourself of one good cigarette anymore, you are ridding yourself of smoking dozens of cigarettes a day and all the problems that come with them. The expenses, the smells, the stares, the inconveniences, the mental anguish, the physical damage perpetrated by every single puff, and eventually the sacrificing of your overall health and your life--all in order to avoid the further withdrawal that went along with being an active drug addict.

It is crucial that you keep seeing smoking as it was, in its entirety--the whole package deal so to say. If you remember smoking as it was--at the end, not at the beginning, you will walk away from each new thought with a sense of accomplishment, pride, and most important, with a better state of health and extended longevity, that you will keep forever as long as you always remember why you decided to never take another puff!

Joel
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OBob Gold
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:58

26 Jan 2003, 11:36 #17

"So, what ex-smokers really mean when they say they can't have a cigarette is that they choose not to go back to smoking. Isn't it nicer to choose not to smoke than to feel deprived of cigarettes? When you choose not to smoke you feel as if you had won a major battle--you broke away from a deadly, dirty and expensive addiction."

Image
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

18 Aug 2003, 20:53 #18

ImageKeep focused, by quitting smoking you are depriving yourself of anything. Nicotine was depriving you of choice. You had to smoke, and smoking was leading to all sorts of consequences, economical, social, and medical. Again, by quitting you are not depriving yourself of a cigarette, you are ridding yourself from nicotine. Because nicotine had the potential of depriving you of choice. It would lead you back to smoking and that would eventually deprive you of your health and your life. Stay in charge of your quit, never take another puff! Joel
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John (Gold)
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

30 Sep 2003, 22:01 #19

"I gave up smoking,"
is like a recovered cancer patient saying
"I gave up cancer."
You don't give up cigarette smoking, you get rid of it.
It isn't easy for us to open our minds after years and years of denial thinking that allowed each of us to pretend that we were in "control" while deep down knowing that each new puff was further destroying the capacities and abilities of these amazing bodies and minds. If you want to quit while permanently retaining some romantic dependency denial image of chemical bondage that is your choice.
Remember one thing, living that retained fantacy just once will remove choice from the equation and again put nicotine in control. Once there you'll be free to create and live all the addiction fantacies you desire for a period of time that is likely to be as long as the 43 carcinogens and 4,000 chemicals in each puff allow.
When offered a cigarette, too stay on this side of the bars is as simple as saying, "No thanks, I don't smoke nicotine, I like being me."
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

20 Feb 2004, 22:02 #20

Image I thought Carla would appreciate this.
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