If you have tried to quit smoking and failed before, take comfort in the fact that most smokers fail several times before quitting successfully. Your past failures are not a lesson that you are unable to quit. Instead, view them as part of the normal journey toward becoming a nonsmoker.
The information below will ease your way and help insure that this is the last time you ever need to go through the quitting process. You can do it!
© 2000 by Patrick Reynolds
The most important step to take is the first step --
admitting you have an addiction.
When asked why you smoke, you might have said, "I just like to smoke!" or "It's my choice to smoke."
The tobacco companies have promoted the idea that smoking is a matter of personal choice. As I see it, there really isn't as much choice as they have suggested to their customers.
Ask yourself, and be totally honest: Am I addicted to tobacco? Am I truly making a freely made choice when I smoke?
You might consider that you need to have a cigarette. Studies have shown that nicotine addiction is as hard to break as heroin or cocaine addiction.
In Nicotine Anonymous' 12 Step program, which sprang from the venerable Alcoholics Anonymous program, the first step is admitting to yourself, "I'm powerless over tobacco." Making this admission may seem trivial to you, but for many it is a very significant part of completing the journey to becoming a non-smoker.
By telling smokers that smoking is a personal choice, the tobacco industry has helped to keep its customers in denial about the true extent of their addiction. If smoking is a choice, then what's the rush to quit? The tobacco companies have used this spin to help keep millions of customers buying their deadly products.
Admitting that you're smoking more out of addiction than choice will help motivate you to go on to the next steps -- taking control of yourself and becoming a nonsmoker.
This admission will further serve you by helping you stay smokefree later. In the months and years after you quit, when temptations to smoke occasionally overpower you -- and they will -- remind yourself, "I have an addiction and I'm powerless over tobacco." Saying this to yourself in overwhelmed moments of desire will help give you the strength to say no to "just one" cigarette.
If you can make it for just five minutes without giving in, the urge to smoke be controllable or disappear. In this way, you'll be able to stay smokefree for life.