Already since 1972, over 60 million people in the USA alone have successfully quit smoking!
At one stage over 60% of the adult population was addicted to this drug. Today it is 28% and dropping.
Now, isn't this a fair thought.
If all these people can do it (60 MILLION OF THEM!) - and they include EVERY TYPE of person imaginable - surely that is PROOF that IT IS POSSIBLE to successfully quit smoking.
Here's another Fact.
We now know from the latest scientific research, that although nicotine is one of the world's fastest acting drugs --- the actual PHYSICAL withdrawal pangs when you give up ARE SO MILD, YOU WILL HARDLY BE AWARE of THEM WHEN YOU STOP.
YES, you have read that sentence right!
I know you will want to argue with me on this point, but, first, let me first make the following points.
The Desire to Smoke
Yes, when you stop smoking you will feel the desire AGAIN and AGAIN to smoke.
We all know that feeling -- 'I must have a cigarette'. But that desire in itself is not bad or painful.
It is just a feeling, a sensation we feel in our body.
However........this is where, for most of us our problems start.
If we start to fear that 'craving' or try to use 'Willpower' to REPRESS it or FORCE it go away, -- "I wish this feeling would go away" we WILL create pain and tension.
This is what as smokers we have all done in the past.
That 'feeling' of wanting to smoke then becomes painful, annoying and terribly irritating.
Now this is the hard part to realize.
The pain, the horror does not come from the desire to smoke, but from HOW we deal with this desire, moment-by-moment WHEN we stop.
Can I emphasize this.
You do not have to experience ANY pain or agony when you stop. Yes, when you stop you WILL experience a.
Temporary feeling of loss
A feeling that you are being deprived of something
A feeling of emptiness
A feeling that you will never be able to enjoy yourself again.
A feeling that you must have a cigarette
These feelings, although very real in themselves are not inherently bad or painful. What is important is how you deal with these feelings when you QUIT SMOKING.
The key part of quitting smoking naturally is learning how to deal with these cravings when you stop.
Right now, you don't want to give up smoking because you are TERRIFIED of how you will FEEL when you can't smoke.
Let's be honest.
You smoke now because you enjoy it.
Or -- to be more accurate: You smoke now because you have conditioned yourself to enjoy it.
It is important that we are honest with ourselves here.
In fact, even the 'THOUGHT', the mere 'thought' of not been able to smoke probably fills you with complete dread now.
But there is another undeniable fact: This 'pleasure' is killing you. Again we must be brutally honest here. Everyday, you are systemically destroying your health.
This is the conflict all smokers face.
On the one hand, smoking is killing you and you desperately want to stop.
..And yet on the other hand, you don't really want to stop because you believe you really enjoy it.
Yet, one other truth cannot be denied and this applies to every smoker.
We are terrified of how we will F-E-E-L when we can't smoke. We are convinced it will be unbearable and impossible.
Right now, the ONLY thing -- yes, THE ONLY THING stopping you from quitting smoking is this fear of how YOU WILL FEEL WHEN YOU STOP.
And yet this very fear is the actual key to quitting smoking naturally.
Quitting smoking is really all about learning HOW to deal with the cravings and feelings you WILL get when you stop.
When you learn how to do that - you will realize that there is nothing to fear when you give up.
What is there to fear?
When you get the craving to smoke, which you will, again and again - - you will now take the OPPORTUNITY to 'change' or 'transform' that craving so that it is actually enjoyable or at least tolerable to experience.
You have decided to give up smoking. It's dinnertime.
You have finished a day's work.
You finish your meal and ..... subconsciously, you reach for a cigarette. But then, of course you remember you no longer smoke.
Bang! At that moment, certain gut feelings will arise.
Feelings of regret........a feeling that you are missing out on something important and then maybe..... terrible feelings of emptiness..... We all know how it feels.
But the real question is: How will you deal with this feeling -- this craving to smoke?
Will you just suffer it, try to repress it and hope that it will go away? That is one option. The old willpower method.
Or will you give in to the feeling -- and start to smoke again (promising to start again tomorrow)?
Or will you - - for the first time ever: - - follow our instructions and actually ALLOW yourself to transform the feeling/craving so that it is actually enjoyable or at least pleasant or tolerable enough to experience.
You see, when you can do that, you will no longer be AFRAID of these cravings when you stop smoking.
In fact, you will start to WELCOME them because they will give you another opportunity to RESPOND and DEAL with them in this NEW WAY.
This process is the essence of quitting smoking naturally and finding it a pleasant and life-affirming experience.
Are you now beginning to see how these principles can also apply to losing weight.
You see a beautiful cake. You want to eat it....when BANG! -- You remember you are on a diet.
Now watch HOW YOU feel when this happens?
Couldn't we describe it as.
'Feelings of regret........a feeling that you are missing out on something important and then maybe..... terrible feelings of emptiness.
Isn't it essentially the same feeling as not being able to smoke?
However, the real question is the same with smoking: How will you DEAL with this feeling - this craving to eat?
Will you GIVE IN to it -- and eat the cake or will you try and FORCE yourself not to eat it- and be miserable?
Why not consider our alternative?
Accept this feeling, this desire to eat. But, instead of giving in to it, learn how to deal and respond to it in a NEW way so that you don't MIND experiencing it?
Transform the craving so that it is actually enjoyable or very pleasant to experience.
The Joy of quitting Smoking?
Remember, when you stop - yes, you WILL feel something but there will be no physical agony, only a temporary feeling that you are MISSING OUT on something. A feeling that you are being deprived of something SPECIAL --- but these feelings will ONLY be temporary.
However, to quit smoking successfully and to start to enjoy doing it we must go deeper than these temporary cravings.
We must realize that:
You find it difficult or impossible to stop smoking now because......... you BELIEVE ABSOLUTELY that you NEED to smoke and even deeper, you BELIEVE that if you give up smoking now, your life will never be as ENJOYABLE again.
In one sentence: You believe your life will be intolerable.
It is these beliefs that makes quitting smoking difficult NOT Nicotine addiction.
Right now, you are not only physically addicted to smoking but you are psychologically dependent or addicted to smoking.
If your addiction were purely physical wouldn't all these nicotine patches have a 100% success record!
Yet, we all know that even if we use a nicotine substitute, we will still continue to feel a terrible desire to smoke.
Again and again, we'll feel we must have a cigarette. At times, it will even get to the stage where we just don't care - even the most dire health warnings will have no affect on us - we just WANT to smoke. Where does this desire come from ?
It comes from our conditioning, our beliefs about smoking.
This moment, we believe that smoking is an essential pleasure. In fact, most of us have a terrible resistance to EVEN thinking about quitting smoking.
Because we believe that in order to do anything about our addiction, i.e. give up smoking -- we would have to end our pleasure and ending pleasure is something we have NO DESIRE to do.
YOUR REAL JOB
Your real job in giving up smoking lies in REALLY UNDERSTANDING that you don't NEED to smoke.
You remove the psychological addiction to smoking.
You will never be truly free until you realize that smoking is not a real pleasure and that when you stop, you WILL NOT BE depriving ourselves of a real pleasure....... ......and then you will not only be able to give up smoking for good but you will enjoy doing it!
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Is it possible to enjoy, yes ENJOY quitting smoking - and not gain ANY weight? Follow Sean O'Riain famous 10-day free online Quit Smoking Course at www.quitsmokingonline.com and prove it for yourself.
Others quit smoking articles available at http://www.quitsmokingonline.com/Articlecontentspage.htm
This article will help you remove the need to smoke naturally by argument and reason alone.
About The Author
I am the author of 'How to Remove the Psychological Addiction TO Smoking' and of 'the Bliss of meditation' at www.meditation-zen.com. This allows me to apply the principles of meditation theory to the process of quitting smoking.
You have permission to publish this article electronically or in print, free of charge, as long as the bylines are included. A courtesy copy of your publication would be appreciated.
This article was posted on October 18, 2004
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