Find A Stop Smoking Program:
A stop smoking class will give you a specific day to stop and the support of a group. Keeping in mind what you've learned in this book, use only the information in the program that seems logical, ignore the rest.
Do Not Try To Get Rid Of Desires To Smoke:
The discomfort of wanting to smoke is temporary and will get rid of itself. When you have a desire to smoke work through the five steps (listed below).
Do Not Substitute Food:
If you "smoke" food whenever you have a desire for a cigarette, you will not only gain weight, you will never break your addiction. Desires to smoke will continue to nag you until you finally break down and give in.
Stay Clear Of Feelings Of Deprivation:
Telling yourself you can't smoke is a lie and will make you feel so miserable you will run back to smoking. Remember that you can smoke. You just can't do it the way you'd like to: NOW AND THEN or WITHOUT DAMAGING YOUR HEALTH.
Give Up The Illusion Of Having "Just One":
One puff or one cigarette has never been enough for you and never will be enough. It will inevitably take you back to smoking your normal amount. The crux of beating a drug addiction is knowing this: IT IS THE FIRST ONE THAT DOES YOU IN.
Choose Between Real Options:
The only real options you have are these: going back to smoking with all the terrible consequences or staying off smoking with the many benefits. You don't have to like this reality, but YOU BETTER ACCEPT IT.
Focus On Benefits - Continually:
Keep in mind the specific benefits you are gaining from being free from your addiction. Counter your compulsion to smoke by remembering what you want more: your breathing, your freedom, and your peace of mind.
Get Smart About Junkie Thinking:
Every time you have a junkie thought, identify it and talk back to it. If you do, these irrational thoughts and plans will eventually lose their power over you.
Take Time Out When You Have A Desire To Smoke:
During withdrawal or in any high risk situation, get away by yourself for a few minutes to review the five steps (listed below) and get your thinking back on track.
Be Uncomfortable - Graciously, And On Purpose:
The discomfort caused by wanting to smoke is temporary and harmless, and it's your means to ESCAPE FROM SLAVERY. The desire to smoke will gradually become less intense and less frequent until most of the time you will feel like a non-smoker.
Prepare For High-risk Situations:
Most people who relapse do so within the first three months because they are not prepared for such things as travelling or emotional upsets. Stay alert and beware of overconfidence.
You Don't Have To Change Your Life:
Drinking coffee, having a glass of wine or eating spicy foods will not make you smoke. They can make you want to smoke. So your job is to treat the desires to smoke rather than avoid them. CHANGE YOUR THINKING, NOT YOUR DAILY ACTIVITIES.
Use Dreams Constructively:
Dreams about smoking are very common and do not mean you are doomed to relapse. The anxiety you feel in a dream when you realize you're smoking will teach you that, although you can smoke, YOU WILL NEVER BE HAPPY WITH IT.
Remember, There's No Cure For Addiction:
You will never be a non-smoker. A non-smoker is someone who has never had a problem with smoking, has never struggled to take control of that problem, and never has worry about losing control. You're an ex-smoker, and although you can be a confident and relaxed ex-smoker, you are always susceptible to relapse.
Expect To Have A Three-month Flare Up:
Many ex-smokers relapse toward the end of the third month because their health has improved and the side effects of smoking have disappeared. Don't imagine that time has cured your addiction. One puff and you will be back to smoking compulsively.
Do Not Nag Or Preach At Other Smokers:
You're only one puff away from a pack a day yourself. Take care of your own recovery and watch out for the influence of other smokers around you. Don't glamorize smoking: remember what it was really like to have to smoke all day every day.
Get Extra Help If You Need It:
Attend a self-help group or see a counselor to work through feelings you've been drugging away all these years. Letting go of these feelings from the past and learning new ways to cope with the present will help you become a happier, more comfortable ex-smoker.
#1 - I Am Having A Desire To Smoke Right Now:
Every time you have a desire to smoke, face it. The desire is going to come over you whether you like it or not. It's normal. That's what makes you a smoker. But you don't have to be afraid of the desire. It's not bigger than you. It can't hurt you. You don't have to get rid of it, hide from it, or pretend it isn't there. Let it run its course.
It will fade away. You may worry that you'll never feel normal again. However, YOU CAN BE CERTAIN THAT AS LONG AS YOU DON'T GIVE IN TO THE ADDICTION, YOUR DESIRE TO SMOKE WILL INEVITABLY DIMINISH, becoming less frequent and less intense until most of the time you feel like a non-smoker. And although you want a cigarette,remember what you don't want. You don't want to get sick from smoking or to have to go on smoking for the rest of your life.
I Can Smoke. I Am Not Deprived: Nobody's taking your cigarettes away from you. You [chose] smoking, and even if you do stop, you can go back to smoking any time you choose. What you can't be, however, is a happy comfortable smoker.
#2 - One Puff And I'll Go Back To Smoking 30 To 40 Cigarettes A Day, Every Day:
Don't trick yourself into believing you can have just one puff when the going gets difficult. Using your drug to get through withdrawal from your drug doesn't make sense. One puff will always call for another puff,and sooner or later you'll be back to smoking them all.
#3 - Right Now I Have A Choice To Make For Myself:
Either give in to this temporary discomfort and go back to the CONSTANT MISERY OF SMOKING, or accept this TEMPORARY discomfort and walk through it for these benefits ...
#4 - NOW ... list YOUR OWN five benefits here.
For Example: better breathing, no more chest pains,healthier heart, peace of mind more self-respect.
Name the five most important benefits for YOU, beginning with your top priority. One way to make sure these are your reasons for stopping is to ask yourself whether you're willingly accepting the discomfort of going through withdrawal.
#5 - YOU ONLY HAVE THE ABOVE TWO OPTIONS ... so now make your choice ...
At this moment I CHOOSE TO WILLINGLY ACCEPT THIS TEMPORARY DISCOMFORT because I want ________(fill in this blank with your reasons to quit)________!!
Always end your thinking process by naming at least three major benefits. When you have a craving to smoke, don't let it make a fool of you. Use these FIVE STEPS, along with your list of benefits, every time the desire to smoke comes up.
Recognize what's happening: you're having a desire to smoke. And you can smoke; you're not deprived. Then, remind yourself that one puff will take you straight back to the slavery of smoking.
Finally, make your choice. Don't whine and complain because you can't have it your way - smoking without consequences. You have to pay a price; you can't have cigarettes and your health, too. Remember that you are choosing between TEMPORARY DISCOMFORT and ONGOING MISERY.
You can succumb to your desire and give in to your addiction for relief from temporary stress ORyou can resist the urge for the sake of long-term happiness and health.
By using these steps to face your addiction, you will train your mind to respond to the desire to smoke in a new you. Instead of automatically giving in to your desires, like a robot, you will confront the desire and make a choice.
Excerpt from: Hooked But Not Helpless, By: Patricia Allison with Jack Host