What was your biggest fear when quitting?

Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:58

31 Aug 2006, 07:57 #51

From: CMondragon21170 Sent: 12/9/2005 4:31 PM
1. What was your biggest fear when quitting? That I would never learn my (the) lesson-never take another puff. That I would continue to smoke, stop, smoke, stop, smoke, die.

2. How did you overcome it? I used my forces for good instead of evil.

3. What did you learn in the process? CHOOSING TO NOT SMOKE is the only absolute truth to remaining nicotine free.

Chevet' - Free and Healing for One Year, Three Months, Twenty Days, 20 Hours and 48 Minutes, while extending my life expectancy 132 Days and 11 Hours, by avoiding the use of 9537 nicotine delivery devices that would have cost me $2,553.26.

Chevet' - Free and Healing for Two Years, Ten Days, 23 Hours and 13 Minutes, while extending my life expectancy 205 Days and 19 Hours, by avoiding the use of 29639 nicotine delivery devices that would have cost me $7,639.96.

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:25

01 Sep 2006, 13:48 #52

What was my biggest fear when quitting?

That it would hurt too much & I would give up. That I would end up on the floor, writhing in pain, crying & screaming & jibbering senselessly, & that I would torture myself like this for a couple of days, then give up.

How did I overcome it?

I watched someone I love die inch by inch & discovered that there are worse things in this world than withdraw. Chemo, for example. That's pretty bad. So is radiation. The only thing I can think of that's worse is what the cancer will do if you don't try to chemo & radiate it. So I decided that maybe I could do the withdraw thing after all. My perspective became altered.

What did I learn in the process?

I learned that if you don't have health insurance you will lose your house. I learned that most of the health care providers who work with the terminally ill are saints. I learned that south of the Mason-Dixon line, there are more smokers than tics on a redbone dog. Also more people hooked up to portable oxygen tanks. I learned that life is a blessing, and that maybe I shouldn't throw mine away.

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:02

01 Sep 2006, 17:47 #53

1. What was your biggest fear when quitting?

I had a bunch of them. First, I thought I was already seriously ill and my health would not improve; I thought I was ready for the hospital. I did not think I could do this. I quit cold turkey using all the tools found here at whyquit.com and my lung capacity improved, my breathing cleared up greatly, my coughing is all but gone and my wife is supportive. Yesterday I started jogging and will be buying a USMC jogging outfit soon. I will proudly wear a patch that says NTAP and run my body to health and a successful quit. My fear is a silly one because I know who I am, once I get to feeling good again I GREATLY FEAR that I will fall to that first puff and the game will be over.

2. How did you overcome it?

I can only overcome it today, this particular minute, and moment by moment, day by day, facing everything that comes in the play of life just NOT TAKE THAT FIRST PUFF. So far after almost 17 days of freedom it's working and all is well. I am not saying that it is easy but it is simple. The temptation to smoke is no longer powerful and passes quickly. I am an analytical person, I say to myself; hmmm, smoke = death - not to smoke = life as healthy as it can be for me. The choice is simple, NTAP.

3. What did you learn in the process?

I have learned that I can do this. I do have the will power to quit smoking and I have learned that I am addicted to nicotine. This is a given, it will always be so but I do not have to succumb to it. I have learned that I need the support of my loved ones and friends and I have learned that this website is a Godsend to me. I sincerely give thanks for what Joel, John and the rest of the managers have created here. I also thank every person who writes into the site as well - as we grow together we learn together and we will stay clean together.

Joe Do - Free and Healing for Sixteen Days, 21 Hours and 16 Minutes, while extending my life expectancy 2 Days and 8 Hours, by avoiding the use of 675 nicotine delivery devices that would have cost me $168.98.

Joined: 17 Jun 2006, 07:00

01 Sep 2006, 18:18 #54

1. What was your biggest fear when quitting?

That this quit was also, like the countless others that preceded it, doomed to the dustheap of failure

2. How did you overcome it?

By looking at my kids. My last quit was before my first child was born so quitting with kids around was a new thing for me. The innocence in my kids eyes was a powerful motivating factor and helped me try and overcome my pessimism.

3. What did you learn in the process?

That this quitting thing was doable. That if you set your mind to something, there are no limits to what you can achieve. That the human spirit is an awsome thing.

Robin - day "four score and one"

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:02

01 Sep 2006, 18:18 #55

The responses from Hope977 to these questions are powerful and thought provoking. Thank you for a different view of the same problem. Joe

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:06

01 Sep 2006, 20:51 #56

How did I miss this gem of a thread? I must post!!
1. What was your biggest fear when quitting?
The unknown. It was uncharted territory for me, and while I was growing up with 2 smoking parents I saw how they kept smoking through the begging and pleading (which as a kid I took it to mean that they "actually did try to quit because I asked" but were unable to quit, rather than they didn't listen to me.)
I also had 2 former-smoker grandparents on one side, and a never-smoker grandmother on the other preaching to me the DOOM and GLOOM not only of smoking but of quitting. They made it seem like it was an impossible task.
Granted as I grew up I made my own choices and I was able to reason for myself, but those messages still affected me big time. I was petrified of what was to come. I imagined years, no DECADES of pain and suffering ahead of me. You know, the way my grandparents talked about quitting you'd think I was going to that very hot place they warn you about in church. Now I understand why Joel doesn't like the term "**** Week." (lightbulb moment, yes I can still have them!)
2. How did you overcome it?
Honestly this site gave me the courage to go for it. I desperately wanted to quit but I just needed to know that it was possible to quit, that I wasn't going to burrrrrrrrn for decades, and just knowing what to expect made a ton of difference.
One day at a time. The oldbies kept drilling that into my head and it was 100% true. Promise myself that for TODAY I was not going to smoke. Don't worry about tomorrow, don't stress about next month, put thoughts of "what about the rest of my life" in the back of my mind. I had to focus on the here and now.
3. What did you learn in the process?
That you CAN quit and be 110% comfortable with your life. The rough spots DO pass (and rather quickly if you compare it to how long smoke was part of my life), and the rough spots were completely survivable. I'll tell you what, it wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be... but I have NO wish to go through it again that's for sure!!!!
Along the way I learned about the Law of Addiction, this I will keep with me forever and I truly believe it's the single most important thing that will keep me from relapse. It really saddens me that more quitters and health care professionals aren't recognizing the sheer importance of this simple concept. If you're going to quit, then quit. Don't do it halfway and set terms that will allow you a few smokes here and there. That's baloney. Do it right, or you'll be doing it over.
Kicking Butt for 3 Years, 10 Months+
Last edited by smokefreeJD Gold on 07 Mar 2009, 15:27, edited 1 time in total.

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:22

02 Sep 2006, 08:41 #57

1. My biggest fear was and still is that I will fail. I feel stronger, but I never forget that I am an addict and that must NTAP if I want to succeed in my quit.

2. I am constantly overcoming this fear with educating myself to strengthen my mind so that I remain quit.

3. I have learned that I am an addict, that I will always be an addict and that if I take one single puff I will be smoking a pack a day again. I have learned that complete and total nicotine cessation is the best way to quit...physical withdrawal was intense but subsided in 3 days leaving you with the psychological triggers to overcome. I have learned how to live as a nonsmoker and enjoy it more than I did when I was a smoker.

Elizabeth - Free from my disgusting nicotine addiction for Twenty Four Days, 9 Hours and 11 Minutes, I have increased my life by 2 Days and 2 Hours, by not smoking 610 death sticks and I also have saved $183.06 simply by never taking another puff.

Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

02 Sep 2006, 12:20 #58

1. What was your biggest fear when quitting?

I guess my biggest fear was that of failing to quit one more time and the humiliation I knew that it would bring.

2. How did you over come it?

I started looking for help. I joined a county sponcered smoking cessation program which handed out patches, gum, lozengers all for 1/2 price and ended up being the only one in the group after 5 wks...went on the patch to make it easier, joined another group and no one quit. After being in constant withdrawal for about 2 months, I had just about decided to smoke until the end and then looked for real help and found Why Quit which lead to a conversation with John and then going to Freedom from Tobacco and reading like crazy. That started the process of educating myself on the addiction to nicotine...the possibility that this was doable, and finally I was getting the truth. The philosophy of one day at a time started to work... and I Never Took Another Puff

3. What did you learn in the process?

I am still learning...but I know that I can do this now. I am learning that I have to take it one day at a time, sometimes one minute or hour and I can NTAP...it is that simple...not easy, but simple...I am learning to keep educated on my addiction. I am learning that I am important and that staying quit is vital to my health and well being. I am learning that I really was not meant to be a smoker even after 40 years of smoking my brains out!! I learned that I can NTAP if I want to remain nicotine free.

VICKI - Free and Healing for Thirty Days, 1 Hour and 2 Minutes, while extending my life expectancy 2 Days and 2 Hours, by avoiding the use of 601 nicotine delivery devices that would have cost me $135.36.

Joined: 08 Nov 2006, 08:00

12 Nov 2006, 12:39 #59

What an important thread!

1. What was your biggest fear when quitting?

Not exactly a fear, but a mistaken belief that I would be losing a major pleasure in life.

I had tried to quit several times and found it agonizing. I just couldn't live like that. I knew withdrawal symptoms would lessen over time but I thought they would lessen very slowly, and in the meantime I would be tortured, unable to work, to sleep, etc.

2. How did you overcome it?

I was driven to try again due to sickness. (asthma, bronchitis, pneumonia). Depressed and desperate I decided to surf the net for inspiration and to try to built up my determination. I didn't really expect to find anything helpful. I figured I knew everything I needed to know. I found the knowledge I needed at WhyQuit.

3. What did you learn in the process

Knowing that after the first 72 hours the physical addiction would be gone made it a lot easier to bear. Other times it felt as though that would be endless which really would have been unbearable.

Finding out that life would be more pleasurable not less pleasurable as an ex-smoker. Once I really fully realized that my life was going to improve, that I wasn't losing something I was gaining something, the decision to do it was easy.

So many times I have asked ex-smokers if they still crave cigarettes. Most if not all said yes, once in a while, but that it wasn't bad. Nobody told me they weren't really cravings, just passing thoughts, nobody told me how fast the worst withdrawal would be over,........ but especially important, nobody told me my life would be so much better... that life would be more fun not less fun...that I'd feel calmer not more nervous.

I am just 36 minutes past my Glory Week, I still have lots of thoughts and urges but they are easy to reject because I have already had a taste of what my future will hold. I can't wait.

I will NTAP because my future is so much better than my past I would never risk going backwards.

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:04

09 Jan 2007, 13:10 #60

still thinking about this one, but what a great thread...will come back with more wisdom and reflection at some point.
alex 1 month clear

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 01:33

09 Jan 2007, 13:42 #61

my biggest fear was losing that feeling of a 'reward' that I would get whenever I finished a task and I would have a cigarette. It took awhile, but eventually I got over it. (time heals everything). I finally realized that not having to **** down deadly chemcials WAS my reward.

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 01:32

09 Jan 2007, 22:57 #62

My biggest fear was that the nagging, disabilitating, craving wouldn't let up. NRT's had taught me they last for more that a year in the past. Watching Joel's Videos convinced me that I was clearly wrong and showed me that I had never REALLY tried to quit the right way. So I figured I would give it my best shot. Worse case scenario = 3 days of total misery and if it didn't let up soon after that I'd end up back where I was in the first place puffing away. I can't believe it. He was actually telling the truth. About everything. Now I'm finally on the other side and the monkey is off my back. And I'm getting choked up right now..... ...
Sorry about that... I learned a lot of things but the main lesson was that the craving , while intense and frequent only lasted for a 2 or 3 minutes each... and they are very infrequent now in just one week !!!
Dale - Free and Healing for Eight Days, 5 Hours and 26 Minutes, while extending my life expectancy 16 Hours, by avoiding the use of 197 nicotine delivery devices that would have cost me $38.22.
Last edited by musician smokefree on 07 Mar 2009, 15:29, edited 1 time in total.

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:04

10 Jan 2007, 07:45 #63

okay, thought about it some more....

What was your biggest fear when quitting?
My biggest fear was that I didn't understand my cravings enough to get through them. A fear of building my hopes yet again, and then failing myself. I can be a _huge_ overanalyzer, but as much brainpower as i put into this part of myself, I couldn't come up with a "reason" for every time I craved, or I couldn't put my addiction into a precise box like I thought I had to in order to quit. ("hmm...i feel worried right now so I am craving a cigarette at a level 5 of intensity") . And when cravings came in the past, I had not found a way to get through them...replacement behavior didn't work on the spot. I didn't understand my addiction, and because of that I was afraid I could not overcome it.
2. How did you overcome it?

The night I decided to quit, I got on line and just started looking for information to reinforce my reasons to quit. I found this site, and was blown away by the information provided. My addiction seemed understandable for the first time, and even better, the way to get out of it seemed doable. I read all the biology information about nicotine and it finally made sense. I was still scared, but felt more hopeful than I had felt in quite some time.

My first 3 days I boarded myself in my house, and as a reward took my third day off of work. Psychologically, getting through the first 72 hours without other stresses was key for me...I am not one of those that could have kept things normal. And those first 3 days, and every day since then, I've spent hours just reading here and finding clarity, or pushing myself to think in other ways than I had before.

3. What did you learn in the process?

Still learning....but so far I am reminded that for me the preparation of change takes more energy than the actual change. I also learned to keep looking for the answers I NEED when faced with a difficult transition or thing to do. It took a lot of continued searching for me to eventually land at whyquit, and if I had stopped I would not have found the information I needed to hear to be successful. I think in our culture it is easy to be spoon fed information, and I am just reminded that I'm smart enough to find answers that aren't readily present in front of me.

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 01:33

11 Jan 2007, 02:35 #64

My biggest fear was the out of no where thinking, "'m gonna go have a cigarette now". Forgetting for a split second that I quit. It just creeps into your brain without warning.

To overcome it I remember my quit list and remember to NTAP.

I learned to never let myself catch me off guard.

Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:24

11 Jan 2007, 03:46 #65

Ooh I like this one!

1. What was your biggest fear when quitting?

That I just wouldn't be "me" anymore. That I would lose my sense of self. Little did I know how much sense of self I would start to actually gain by quitting. Also I was very afraid I wouldn't be able to be creative any more.

2. How did you overcome it?

By taking things one day at a time. And facing situations that I was afraid of being in without nicotine and then emerging from them without relapsing.

3. What did you learn in the process?

I gained a lot of confidence doing this and so I suppose that I learned that all the things I used to do while smoking I can do just fine now without smoking..and some even better!

Btw..I am double green now!!

Ginger...2 months plus
Last edited by gingersnaps1018 on 07 Mar 2009, 15:30, edited 1 time in total.

Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

11 Jan 2007, 03:55 #66

1. What was your biggest fear when quitting?

That it would be impossible to work because of concentration problems.

2. How did you overcome it?

I didn't work the first week and after that I just started working. The first week I was very quickly irritated but after that it got better and better.

3. What did you learn in the process?

Everything in life goes on without smoking and you will learn to do it without smoking.

Hannes, One month, two days. 2696 cigarettes not smoked, saving $674.03.

Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

27 May 2007, 01:39 #67

Message from non-posting member:
Received: 05/26/07

I smoked for a long time(at least 30 years). If you've been smoking that long you've done at least one if not all of the following: You set a date to quit in the future. It was close enough that it seemed like you were really trying but far enough away that you could get plenty of smoking in before it arrived. And the date came and went and some minor crisis came up and you "had" to keep smoking. Brilliant!! You didn't quit but you felt better for awhile cause you tried!! Or you came up with the "I'll smoke one less cigarette a week for 30 weeks and 3 months from now I'll be quit!!" or some variation of the so called gradual withdrawal method.

For some reason I would start and then quickly abandon this method for quitting not really knowing why. I knew I was miserable though. Well I found out later, on WhyQuit, that putting yourself through physical nicotine withdrawal every week was the only outcome of this ridiculous idea. I could go on and on with other methods I used to delude myself but I've got to believe that if you're a long term smoker you can relate to some of this. But stay with me because if you can relate to the what I've said above, you certainly can relate to this. Of all the reasons for quitting, better health, longer life, food tastes better, want to climb Mt. Everest but bad idea to smoke at 29,000 ft, etc, etc, one of the hidden things keeping you from doing it is fear. Fear? Fear of quitting?? Yes, fear.

And it is a fear that tells you that while yes, I can quit, I can be strong enough to go through a few days of physical withdrawal, I can be tough enough to avoid temptation when I'm around smokers, I can grind it out because I've done some hard things in my life, that the deep, deep down fear is that after quitting, that for the rest of my life I will have cravings for a smoke and I will never be able to fufill them!! That's what I believed before I went cold turkey at 11:00 am on February 25th, 2007. And I was right for the first 5 days. And I was right for the first 10 days. And the first 15 days!! And I was getting mad, thinking, great, I've quit and I'm feeling, sleeping, smelling better but this crave is driving me nuts!! And then on the 17th day something magical happened. I woke up feeling good and I DID NOT WANT A CIGARETTE!!

Later that day I did want one, but everyday after that the craving went away more and more. And now, at three months, it's almost gone completely. And it's a quiet and joyous feeling at the same time. When I went out for coffee this morning I could smell the pines and the newly mown grass on a summer breeze here in the upper midwest. And I will enjoy the day without any cravings for nicotine and it feels great. How Good is That!!!


Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

27 May 2007, 08:28 #68

1. i wouldn't be me any longer

2. education myself before i quit and continuing the education.....checking in every day right here.

3. i learned that i still have a lot to learn! And that i can NTAP.

Kris at 36 glorious days

Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

08 Oct 2008, 07:15 #69

1. What was your biggest fear when quitting?

Failure and gaining weight.

2. How did you overcome it?

Well- I will not fail( I know that now) and I did gain weight but I am not stressing about it- I will lose it again.

3. What did you learn in the process?

That I can do this and I find I like me! It's almost like I didn't really get to know me until I had so much time on my hands that I had to get to know me.Not just me thin but me! (and i find with my new curves that retro clothes look fun! )

Christine- 73 days 6 hours!!!
Last edited by nomowrinkles on 07 Mar 2009, 15:32, edited 1 time in total.

Joined: 06 Dec 2008, 16:58

07 Mar 2009, 16:07 #70

  • Message 1 A fear of a completely different lifestyle change
  • Message 2 A fear of losing my best friend and companion
  • Message 3 A fear I'd succeed
  • Message 4 A fear of failure
  • Message 5 A fear of losing my best friend
  • Message 6 A fear of myself
  • Message 7 A fear cold turkey was going to be miserable
  • Message 8 A fear of losing my desire to continue
  • Message 9 A fear of weight gain
  • Message 10 A fear I couldn't cope with life
  • Message 11 A fear of not being able to function
  • Message 12 A fear of going on with life
  • Message 14 A fear I'd be too late
  • Message 15 A fear I'd succeed then relapse
  • Message 16 A fear of how do I live without you
  • Message 17 A fear I'd have permanent damage
  • Message 18 A fear I won't make it
  • Message 19 A fear I won't be the same person
  • Message 20 A fear I was one of those people who couldn't quit
  • Message 21 A fear I'd fail
  • Message 22 A fear that all of you were different than me
  • Message 23 Of living without cigarettes
  • Message 24 Telling my smoking friends that I'd quit
  • Message 25 A fear of failure
  • Message 26 I was scared of everything
  • Message 27 A fear it wouldn't get easier
  • Message 28 A fear of the type of person I'd be without nicotine
  • Message 29 A fear it was going to hurt
  • Message 31 A fear the first three days would be horrible
  • Message 32 A fear of putting myself through withdrawal again
  • Message 33 A fear it would always feel like the first few hours
  • Message 34 A fear I hadn't quit in time
  • Message 35 A fear withdrawal would last weeks or months
  • Message 37 A fear I was too late and would die early like mother
  • Message 38 A fear of success - Joel
  • Message 39 A fear I'd succeed and never be able to have another
  • Message 40 A fear of becoming irritable and short with those closest
  • Message 41 A fear life would be completely unbearable
  • Message 43 A fear I'd never learn the lesson never take another puff
  • Message 44 Of failing a millionth time, disappointing family & friends
  • Message 45 A fear quitting would change me in a negative way
  • Message 46 A fear I could quit for a little while but not long
  • Message 47 A fear of both failure and success
  • Message 48 A fear of losing something special
  • Message 49 A fear of misery
  • Message 49 A fear I'd get a related disease or have a stroke
  • Message 50 A fear I would never discover the lesson NTAP
  • Message 51 A fear quitting would hurt too much and I'd give up
  • Message 52 A fear I was already seriously ill and wouldn't improve
  • Message 53 A fear I was doomed to the dust heap of failure
  • Message 55 A fear of the unknown, of entering uncharted territory
  • Message 56 A fear of failure and that I still will
  • Message 57 A fear of failure and the humiliation it would bring
  • Message 58 A mistaken belief I'd lose a major pleasure in life
  • Message 60 A fear of losing my reward after completing a task
  • Message 61 A fear craves wouldn't end, a lesson NRT taught me
  • Message 62 A fear I didn't understand craves & couldn't navigate them
  • Message 63 A fear of forgetting I was quitting and messing up
  • Message 64 A fear that I would lose my sense of "self"
  • Message 65 A fear concentration would make it impossible to work
  • Message 66 A fear of a lifetime craves that I'd never be able to fulfill
  • Message 67 A fear I wouldn't be me any longer
  • Message 68 A fear of gaining weight
Last edited by FreedomNicotine on 07 Mar 2009, 17:01, edited 2 times in total.

Joined: 20 Mar 2014, 17:36

30 Apr 2014, 17:35 #71

I just read a study on how nicotine addiction causes mice to fear withdrawal. At least I think that what this means. So does the drug and the addiction actually create that feeling in us before we quit? I know that I feared that I wouldn't be able to quit.

But I could, and I did. 23 days today.

Here's a link to the National Institutes of Health comments on fear and nicotine. Please correct me if I'm wrong here. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16177040/