Smokefree days: 2,783
Total savings: $36,179
I looked at my stats and decided I would share. I am so pleased I took the plunge all that time ago. At the time I gave myself at the outside a month before I smoked again. Well here I am over 7 years down the track and so much better off for being SMOKEFREE. I smoked for 49 years before I decided enough was enough. If you're thinking of quitting do it now. You won't regret it. Have a great week everyone
Smokefree days: 366
Total savings: $2,823
To All you newbies, dig deep you've got this! I never thought I would be here a year later. Utilise the blogs they really are helpful and people are your biggest strength to get through it. 2019 will be your year start smashing your goals smoke free 👊
I don't frequent the blogs much these days. I will be smoke-free for 5 years this coming May . Not one solitary puff in that five years. I wanted to come on and encourage you by telling you some of the things that were helpful for me.
I smoked for 41 years and tried many times over those years to quit, and like many of you I thought I would never have the strength or determination to give up and go the distance. I was wrong. It was seeking support that changed everything for me. That, and learning some truths about smoking and about myself. And I learned some coping techniques too.
Here are some of the things I found really helpful.
It takes around 72 hours from (the time of your last smoke), for nicotine to leave your body. (If you have even one puff your 72 hours starts all over again). Those are the hardest 3 days. Once you get through Days 3-5 the worst of the physical withdrawal is over and you just have to battle the ‘mental/emotional’ dependency.
And something that was really key for me was this: the really intense cravings only last up to 7 minutes (not all day like that addiction will try and tell you). Check it out and you will see that’s true. “Break it down . Just concentrate on getting through those 7 minutes, one minute at a time. Practice the 4 D’s (distract, delay, drink water and deep breathe) to get through them.
I found in the early days I felt so ‘double-minded’ Part of me wanted to smoke part of me did not. I was in a constant battle with myself. So I pictured the addiction as a separate thing (because it is really). I saw it as a nasty monster living inside of me. It wanted to smoke, but I did NOT want to smoke. My battle was with the addiction, rather than myself. It whinged and whined at me, begging for a smoke but I refused to feed it, because I knew that if I didn’t feed it .. it would starve and die. And as it got weaker I got stronger and stronger. I found this separating the addiction from myself really helpful.
And put a plan in place before you start. Change your routine. If you smoke with coffee on the deck .. move to another place for your coffee. Plan out in your head what you will do when the craving comes. What will you do when you are confronted with the smell? What will you do when someone offers. Make escape plans. Will you go for a walk. Will you suck on a straw, squeeze a cush ball, ask for help, get up and clean the bench. You will be more likely to follow the plan in times of crisis. Find something to do with your hands, chew gum, do whatever it takes.
Reward yourself for every milestone. Our bodies work on a reward system. That’s how our brains are wired.
Stay away from smokers as much as possible. Put your boundaries in place before the temptation comes. Don’t put yourself into positions that are hard to resist. Don't be afraid to ask your friends to support you.
NOPE (not one puff ever) is the only way to remain smoke free. Don’t listen to the lie that you can just have ‘one puff’ to alleviate the cravings.
You can do this .. .you are so much stronger than you think. Ride out those first days and instead of reaching for that smoke, choose instead to come and blog until the craving passes. There is usually someone in here to support you through the craving.
Good luck on your smoke-free journey. You got this