Thoughts that seem worse than the first days urges

Retraining the conscious mind

Thoughts that seem worse than the first days urges

Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

19 Nov 2000, 21:11 #1

Joel's Reinforcement Library

Thoughts that seem worse than urges experienced the first few days

The urges that happen weeks or months after initial quitting can catch you much more off guard than the urges encountered during the first few days. When you had an urge at 10:00 am the day you quit smoking, it was no big deal. You likely had one at 9:55 am just before it. In fact, the first few days if you went to long without an urge you would have felt something was wrong. Although, some people just have one urge that first day. It hits them when they wake up, goes away when they go to sleep, at which point they dream about smoking all night. In essence, it was chronic.

When you start to get more time under your belt not smoking, the triggers become more sporadic. At first separated by minutes, then hours, eventually days and weeks. But they still happen. When they occur after a long period of time they catch you much more off guard.

Also, in the beginning, when your guard is up and urges are frequent, you are constantly talking yourself through them. You are then basically reinforcing your resolve over and over again all day long. When you stop having chronic urges, you naturally stop reinforcing your resolve throughout the day. Then when the trigger hits, not having talked yourself through it very recently, you sometimes have a harder time mustering up the initial motivation for quitting and ammunition for staying off.

One other factor happens with time making urges feel stronger. You start to forget smoking but still remember the "good" cigarettes. You forget the ones you smoked automatically, paying no real attention to even as you smoked them. You forget the nasty one you despised as you smoked them. You forget all the associated annoyances that went with being a smoker. Then you start to remember the best cigarette you ever had in your life. If you focus on this cigarette without recalling all the others and the problems that went with the others, it is hard to not want it.

But that "one" cigarette concept is a fantasy. Not smoking will never be as good as that fantasy, but smoking will not be like that fantasy either. Smoking is what it was at the end, the day you quit-not what it was like early on when it initially hooked you. At the end, smoking was annoying enough to make you want to quit, even though you were going through a horrid withdrawal and psychological readjustment process to do it. You then understood that smoking was making life complicated, ruining your health and basically slowly killing you. Well, cigarettes haven't changed. Just your memories of them have.

Remember cigarettes as they really were, not how you wished they were. Then when the urge is triggered, you will have the ammunition to squelch it. You will recognize that you were just having a bad moment, when you were quitting you were having "bad days." When you were smoking you were a slave to a product that was killing you. You fought long and hard to overcome that control and you never want to relinquish your freedom of choice over such a deadly product again. To keep the control, remember, when the urge is triggered-never take another puff!

Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:13

29 Nov 2000, 00:48 #2

Thank you for posting today. On this one, the important word is SEEM. Nicotine addiction is a sly one. Education about nicotine has becom strength. Coupled with NEVER TAKING ANOTHER PUFF!!!!!!!!!and i will not change my mind. Yes, it's my final answer. Christiana.

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:02

29 Nov 2000, 06:41 #3

I agree with you Christiana, Saturday evening was a prime example, probabaly my first proper social party since quitting, the first time I have had a couple (ok a few!) alcoholic drinks. I was on my guard thank goodness, but there were a couple of times when I so easily could have had "just one puff!" "just to be sociable! one won't hurt!" But I know these are junkie thoughts, and they did pass pretty quickly, but it is mainly those four words that stick in my mind all the time.... "NEVER TAKE ANOTHER PUFF"
And as I tell eanybody who will listen to me as long as I NEVER TAKE ANOTHER PUFF I will always stay a non-smoker!

Linda x
It has been Two months, two weeks, three days, 2 hours, 44 minutes and 39 seconds, since I became a non-smoker! I have not smoked 2343 cigarettes!
This has saved me the grand total of £351.70 (WHERE HAS IT GONE?)!
Which means you will now have to put up with me for an extra 1 week, 1 day, 3 hours, 15 minutes.


Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

30 Nov 2000, 20:44 #4

I see we have a number of people just over three days now so I thought I would bring up a few posts about the thoughts for cigarettes still happening and contrast them with the demands your body was creating the first few days for nicotine, or true urges. They are different and you will find that if focused on now, the desires can be squelched. I will bring up a couple of other articles on the topic too and will just cut and paste this description on all of them. Have a good day everyone.

Last edited by Joel on 11 Jul 2014, 16:28, edited 1 time in total.

Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:50

25 Dec 2000, 14:16 #5

History here,

You know, even with this much time under my belt, Two months, two days, 21 hours, 30 minutes and 41 seconds. And this many cigs not smoked 1597, (which is the most time for me ever not smoking) I have been exeriencing some pretty tough urges.

But, like in one of your other posts, The Lucky Ones Get Hooked, I'm one of those, I know that I'll get hooked all over again if I were to have even one.

Junkie thoughts keep running through my mind. But, I just refuse to give in. I just know it has to get better.

Sometimes I become afraid but I always remind myself, after a long hard prayer that I will NEVER TAKE ANOTHER PUFF!!!

Thank you Joel for posting this. I really needed it.

GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)
Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:00

25 Dec 2000, 14:32 #6

Hi herstory....

Hang in there are still in the relatively early stages of a quit and while you have conquored many triggers....there are still lots to face. The holiday time is very difficult for some as smoking was a big part of it. Please read all the posts that Joel brought up today on the holidays.

Pretty about 3 will go for longer and longer periods during the day when you don't even think about smoking....really! Try not to dwell on what you remember as being the "perfect" cigarette and remember all the terrible and disgusting ones. The addiction is calling to is a nasty and sneaky one. While I am at almost a year quit...the thought of a cigarette.....very rarely enters the picture. I work in a drugstore and when I smell the tobacco on my makes me very sick and I wonder how I could have ever let myself smoke for over 40 years. the thought of taking that one puff really scares me to death and I thank goodness for every day that takes me further and further from an addiction that was stealing my life.

Stick close to the board and keep posting and reading.....and remember, that whatever you do....never take another puff. You can do this....and I promise does get easier.

have a wonderful holiday.
hugs, Linda

Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:43

26 Dec 2000, 00:21 #7

Thanks Joel,
I needed that ! I once talked to a counselor about my weight issues and she said to try to picture my fav fattening foods only in black and white and dingy and unattractive, and to picture vegetables,salads and fruits in glowing colors. That helps me, have lost 40 lbs in the past year. Am remembering the nastiness and stink and bad taste involved w/nicotine...makes me shutter..Iwill be more prepared for the "sneak attacks" after reading this today

Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

04 Jan 2001, 21:19 #8

ImageFor people now passing the 72 hour mark. There are still moments but that is a difference. Moments instead of hours or constant pain. Hang in there this gets progressively better.


Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:50

20 Feb 2001, 22:33 #9

Thanks, Joel, Joanne, everyone....(yes, I finally figured out how to post :)

I'm past the 72 hour mark, but by the skin of my teeth, and by the grace of the Lord! It's been act of will now not to succumb to the "thought" cravings...especially since hubby was still smoking. But thanks to talking about FREEDOM for the last 2 days, hubby has put down the cancer sticks TODAY!!!

I have been smoke-free for: 5 Days 10 Hours 19 Minutes 24 Seconds. I have NOT smoked 190 cigarettes, for a savings of $28.51. I have added 15 Hours 50 Minutes to my life.

Shelby (GOLD)
Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:50

19 Mar 2001, 14:33 #10

ImageImageThanks for the reality check.... I KNEW it was that ol' Junkie, jive talking, romanticizing that most perfect cigarette of all time.