Anyone ever quit smoking? What did you do?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 30, 2013 5:03 PM GMT
    I regret it. I'm so stupid. I can't stop smoking. It's nasty. It's unhealthy. It's expensive.

    I want to quit so bad but smoking relaxes me. I don't know what to do.

    I used to be a non-smoker and I know exactly how they just don't get how difficult it is to quit. icon_sad.gif
  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11406

    May 30, 2013 5:12 PM GMT
    It is tough to do ... I quit several times before I finally quit for good ... What finally did it was I quit cold turkey. Gave away my last pack of cigarettes. The first week was tough going ... you just keep counting the days you are free ... of course it is going to be a hell of a lot harder if you hang with people that smoke. When ever the urge would hit me, I would think about how bad they stunk and how unhealthy they were and what it was doing to my lungs and teeth and breath, and basically every time you smoke, those that don't can smell the stench ... after a while you will realize how bad people that smoke smell. Also it will wrinkle you at an earlier age.
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    May 30, 2013 5:14 PM GMT
    I'm not a smoker, but I know a little bit on addiction & how to quit smoking.

    Sudden cessation is never recommend, because it makes the person very nervous, anxious, confusion, impatience...etc.

    Take it slow...
    If you smoke 10 cigarettes per day, try 9 for few days or a week, then go for 8 a week or few days, and then 7, and so on...then it's a lot easy for you or for anyone to quit.

    on the contrary sudden cessation may make you to smoke more, the success rate is quite rare unless there is a strong external force or pressure from your friends or family or rehabilitating centres.
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    May 30, 2013 5:26 PM GMT
    AMoonHawk saidIt is tough to do ... I quit several times before I finally quit for good ... What finally did it was I quit cold turkey. Gave away my last pack of cigarettes. The first week was tough going ... you just keep counting the days you are free ...


    most people i know who quit do something like this.
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    May 30, 2013 5:28 PM GMT
    Harry7785 saidI'm not a smoker, but I know a little bit on addiction & how to quit smoking.

    Sudden cessation is never recommend, because it makes the person very nervous, anxious, confusion, impatience...etc.

    Take it slow...
    If you smoke 10 cigarettes per day, try 9 for few days or a week, then go for 8 a week or few days, and then 7, and so on...then it's a lot easy for you or for anyone to quit.

    on the contrary sudden cessation may make you to smoke more, the success rate is quite rare unless there is a strong external force or pressure from your friends or family or rehabilitating centres.


    thanks for advice. i will try this
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    May 30, 2013 5:32 PM GMT
    I quit in one day (night) on Feb 12th, 2013. I really had little to do with quitting. I KNOW it was a higher power that did it.
    I got the flu...after five days, it turned into double pneumonia. I immed. went to Urgent Care and got an antibiotic of the pneumonia. I took one at 4 pm and went to bed. I woke up at 9 pm and tried to smoke. I gagged, choked and almost threw up trying to get 3 puffs down. I put the butt out, threw away my remaining pack and went back to sleep.
    The next morning, I woke up..... CRAVING!! But not for a cig. I desperately wanted something citrus, which I haven't eaten in over 20 years due to stomach problems. I had NO desire to smoke.
    That's been three months now...and I must admit I think about it once in a while...even dream about once in a while. BUT I don't act on it.
    Soooo, after 50 years, I am smoke-free...and feel pretty confident I won't go back. This kind of miracle only comes once in a life time...and I ain't gonna fuck it up!!!
    Other than doing it the way I did... I wish you best of luck. I tried a hundred times and never made it passed the first day. .
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 30, 2013 5:49 PM GMT
    I stupidly smoked teens through mid-30s. I still remember my very first drag. Clean now for more than 20 years. I had tried the patch popular at the time but found myself wearing it while smoking. Tapering off also didn't work. That was nothing but a tease for me. The only thing that worked for me was cold turkey.

    At that time I tried to stay away from most of my triggers like having a beer on the boat, also I stopped sodas and coffee--instead I drank a lot more water which was natural for me anyway as I always liked water--and I totally stopped hitting the bars for about a year or more until I felt like I was under control. Even then at the bars I'd only have a water, no adult beverages so I would stay in control.

    One trigger I couldn't stop was eating, of course, so I did the opposite with that and just let myself eat anything I wanted, thinking part of the problem was an oral fixation. I did put on some weight at that time as I expected but that came off after the first year. Not a problem.

    Visualization is also a good tool. Probably you visualize yourself smoking. in other words, you might be seeing yourself with a cigarette in your hand. You might even imagine that's how other people see you. Those types of self images can be reinforcing and make change difficult.

    Instead, visualize a dirty lung. Google one for yourself to get a good image of it in your head if you don't already have one at hand.

    smoking-lungs.jpg
  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11406

    May 30, 2013 6:02 PM GMT
    Harry7785 said...
    Take it slow...
    If you smoke 10 cigarettes per day, try 9 for few days or a week, then go for 8 a week or few days, and then 7, and so on...then it's a lot easy for you or for anyone to quit.


    This guy probably works for the tobacco company ... this does not work at all ... I have never known one person to be able to just keep cutting back until they finally are able to quit... the best thing to do, is just never have that first cigarette in the morning and start from there ... drink lots of coffee icon_wink.gif
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    May 30, 2013 6:30 PM GMT
    Never started !
  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    May 30, 2013 7:58 PM GMT
    I removed myself from society for a week, smashed empty beer bottles in the floor..... Yeah. It was tough. Exercise helps a lot. Spend more time at the gym. Good luck! icon_smile.gif
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    May 31, 2013 9:30 AM GMT
    AMoonHawk said
    Harry7785 said...

    This guy probably works for the tobacco company ... this does not work at all ... I have never known one person to be able to just keep cutting back until they finally are able to quit... the best thing to do, is just never have that first cigarette in the morning and start from there ... drink lots of coffee icon_wink.gif

    Ha ha, No, I don't work for any company.
    It may still work though...
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 31, 2013 9:55 AM GMT
    In the process right now, 3 months smoke free on 6/5.

    If you can't quit any other way, try Chantix. It has been a godsend. It really takes away those early cravings. Most doctors will readily prescribe it, but make sure your insurance covers all or most of it, cuz it's pricey. I was lucky that mine covered it 100%, so it was a free way to get healthier. I know it's working because I made it through a 3 day trip to Vegas during this process without 1 cigarette. That was a biggie.

    It doesn't come without side effects. I didn't have any of the nightmares that people have reported, but I did gain weight, and I haven't been eating THAT much more since I quit. I'm off the pills in the next 3-4 weeks, and I'll worry about the weight then. I don't want to add the stress of trying to lose weight to this more important process.
  • Fable

    Posts: 3866

    May 31, 2013 10:09 AM GMT
    I keep trying. Never lasted longer than a month.
  • BardBear

    Posts: 533

    May 31, 2013 10:25 AM GMT
    I made a three pronged attack. For one, I did "extinction" where I smoked less cigarettes per day up until a goal date. So, for one week, I smoked my normal. The next? 3/4 of that. The next? 1/2 that. All the way down to one smoke a day.

    Along side of that? I did one of those hypnotizing CDs (this was before mp3s, I'm afraid) and listened to it every night.

    And, thirdly, I went on the patch after my last smoke.

    I quit on Halloween, 2001, a few months before getting hitched--and haven't touched the stuff since.

    However, I curtail my visits to the club and any other place with much smoking. This included tell my family. I also utilized "competitive theory," but didn't realize it. I told a crapload of people I was quitting and the day I was going to do it. That way, they kept my feet to the fire with ribbing and questions.

    Good luck! It was one of the hardest things I've ever done.

    Peace,
    Bardy
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    May 31, 2013 10:48 AM GMT
    workhard13 saidI regret it. I'm so stupid. I can't stop smoking. It's nasty. It's unhealthy. It's expensive.

    I want to quit so bad but smoking relaxes me. I don't know what to do.

    I used to be a non-smoker and I know exactly how they just don't get how difficult it is to quit. icon_sad.gif


    I quit smoking eight years ago in October, and I haven't ever considered going back. The key for me was NOT to plan. When I'd planned it out before, I romanticized smoking. "This is my last week smoking." "This is my last cigarette." "This is my last puff on a cigarette." Within a few days, I was back.

    I actually quit by accident. One morning, I wanted a cigarette, but I really wanted to brush my teeth and take a shower first. After I did that, I realized it was stupid for me to smoke right away because it would negate what I'd just done. When my roommate had asked me what it was like outside, I told him I didn't know because I hadn't been out to smoke all day. That's when it dawned on me to try to keep going. From there, it became a challenge to me.

    My way doesn't work for everyone, but it did for me. You just have to get to a point to where you really don't want to smoke anymore. Once you do, it's a piece of cake to quit.
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    Jun 15, 2013 5:45 AM GMT

    UPDATE: JUNE 14, 2013
    STILL NOT SMOKING....FOUR MONTHS!! I honestly never dreamed I could do it...or that I even wanted to. After 50 years...it's a bad habit that's sure to kill. I've been lucky...my lungs are still clear, however I DO have shortness of breath once in a while.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 15, 2013 6:58 AM GMT
    I tried the patch, it just kept me up at night. I switched to the gum and that was ten years ago. I still chew the gum at times but like the doctor said, the gum won't klll you the cigarettes will.
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    Jun 15, 2013 7:07 AM GMT
    I smoked in college occasionally for about a year but I probably never smoked right because I stopped after college ended and never smoked again.
  • phonehome123

    Posts: 23

    Jun 15, 2013 7:22 AM GMT
    Yep its hard. I used to smoke - and the smell in the air of someone else smoking would set me off every-time So the pub or any nights out would always get me. But now it smells disgusting and I can't imagine how I ever did it.

    There is no 'do this and it will work' solution. But I will say that you just need to keep trying. First time you might last a few days, then next time a few months, then maybe next time - your done!

    Just KEEP TRYING your hardest - if you fail do not give up. Try again.

    For me going to the gym lots and getting healthy in general helped too. When your going for a massive bike ride or run through the forest, or putting in a huge session at the gym, smoking a cigarette is the last thing on your mind.
  • wherewillwebe

    Posts: 120

    Jun 15, 2013 7:36 AM GMT
    I used to be a heavy smoker, two packs of cigarette a day for more than 10 years. About 4 years ago, a friend of mine asked me to go jogging with him in the morning and the very first day of running, I threw up in the middle of the road after only 20 mintutes. Since then, the disgusting taste of my own vomit in my mouth has kept me from ever smoking again.
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    Jun 15, 2013 9:12 AM GMT
    I'm about to give it another go. My main obstacle is - unlike my job and much of my existence, smoking demands a slow and relaxed pace. There are no deadlines to meet, no enforced regimentation dictating when I light up. One thing I know is, the more I'm physically active the lower the urge to grab a "square." So right now is an opportune time, while the weather's nice and I can walk around a lot. Not only that, one of the health clubs in my neighborhood is offering a major intro special this weekend so I'll be taking the bait.

    Also, fate played its hand two weeks ago in directing me to share a bus seat to NYC with a nice friendly guy who pointed out someone nearby who was smoking when I sought a light during a travel break. We hadn't talked at all until then, but ended up yakking away for the rest of the trip. He'd been hooked on cigarettes heavily for 15 years but had ended up becoming a runner instead (and didn't go into any spiel about how awesome running is - cool points for that.) A tip he gave me was to do a breathing exercise when the urge to reach for a cig hit: inhale while counting to 4, hold to a count of 7, count to 8 while letting the breath out. In my chorus we do the exact same thing before rehearsing so I thought to myself, "DUHHHH! Why didn't I think of that!" Am passing that on so maybe somebody else can work with it too. icon_smile.gif

    Part of my weekend in New York involved meeting an e-pal in person for the first time. He turned out to be one of those "not supposed to be doing this" types who was quite happy to bum one each time I was indulging. I also have a work buddy who supposedly quit several years ago but regularly has a few at parties. But the vast majority of my neighbors, friends, and fellow singers either don't smoke now or never did. (No small quantity of them bug me about it too.) So a compromised social life is a non-issue. The trick will be not "cheating" down the line.
  • ribprod

    Posts: 17

    Jun 15, 2013 9:16 AM GMT
    Hi Workhard, I was a regular smoker during my 20's, although I never got to the packet-a-day level. But still it nagged me. Particularly after big parties where I would smoke double the normal amount and feel like shit the next day. Also I'm prone to bronchial infections, and my father died of emphysema. So enough reasons not to smoke!

    Eventually I started attempting to quit, not really following any method, just not smoking. Through three or four attempts I noticed the following pattern:

    1) During the first week I felt ok. I was conscious of what I was doing and felt good.

    2) The difficulty during the first couple of weeks was the physical dependency. My body kept begging for a cigarette. It felt just like a hunger or a thirst. Totally physical. Someone explained to me that somewhere in our chest we store the nicotine, and the physical dependency is basically this nicotine storage running low. In theory, if you can let it run to empty and leave it empty for a while, you're over the hill. In theory - and I have no scientific evidence for this theory!

    3) By the third or fourth week I noticed the physical desire for smoking dwindled and then stopped. The nicotine storage theory seemed to be working...

    4) Then the other dependency kicked in - I guess the psychological one. Could have been some stressful event, or boredom, or loneliness, or grief. And suddenly it was much like a hollywood thriller - the monster you thought you had killed suddenly appeared out of nowhere wielding a bloody knife. This is where I failed most times.

    But..

    Eventually I conquered the monster. I managed to stay tobacco-free for 3 years. Then one day at a party I was chatting with someone who was smoking and I suddenly felt like having one. But even before I asked, I knew I only wanted to try it to remember it, I just wanted ONE. And one it was. And I was ok. Next day, as if nothing, and I stayed non-smoking for another lengthy period of time. Then again, similar situation.

    5) Maybe months into not having smoked a cigarette, you'll find the smell of cigarette smoke bothers you. You will become acutely aware of people who come back indoors having had a smoke outside and how they stink rotten. You will be in a smoky party and get home and next morning you will find your clothes reek. Walking along the sidewalk behind someone who is smoking will make you wince. You'll go through an intolerance phase. This too will pass. Avoid the temptation to become sanctimonious - your smoking pals won't appreciate it.

    Recommendations:

    - Try giving up in a relatively stress-free period of your life, and avoid loneliness or boredom initially at least. Tricky if you are going to hang out with smokers to avoid that.
    - Be conscious that the insurmountable physical desire to smoke will go away. It definitely will. But you need to wait.
    - When the psychological desire kicks in...well...you'll be tested. Call a friend. Ask the audience. 50/50...

    Other side effects of quitting you'll observe:

    - After the second or third week your respiratory system will begin to purge. This comes in the form of a persistent, annoying cough, quite a bit of phlegm and spluttering. You'll think "I'm worse than when I was smoking!" You aren't. Your body is cleaning up, and part of this is through irritation and production of mucus. It will pass. Carry a handkerchief with you. When you are over this bit, you'll feel like you got a new set of pipes.

    - You'll probably gain weight. Not obscenely but you will. Tobacco reduces appetite and apparently accelerates metabolism. I wouldn't stress too much about this, and if you are a regular gymgoer you'll be ok.

    My epilogue to quitting:

    Nowadays I have compromised to become what they call a social smoker. In other words, I never smoke at home or at work, but only on social occasions particularly where there is plenty of drink involved. I may smoke 2 or 3 on a given evening and that's enough. Then nothing for weeks or months sometimes. And the thing is, I don't miss it when I stop. It is not troubling at all. Maybe because I know that somewhere down the line I'll get another chance to have one. The downside of this type of smoking is you are bumming cigarrettes off others. You just have to build a thick skin and a winning smile :-) Although I do sometimes buy a 10 packet if I'm going to a big party, smoke what I want, and leave the leftovers untouched until the next party.

    Hope this helps icon_wink.gif
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    Jun 15, 2013 9:51 AM GMT
    I use to smoke from 21 until 31. A couple of years before I quit; I was up to 2 packs a day. Our governor decided to levy a $2 per pack vice tax on smokes here in Indiana. At $5 a pack,I quit cold turkey outta spite. The first two weeks were a bitch, got the worse canker sores ever!
    I went to Wal greens and bought their big bags (2 for $3) of "old folks candy" mix like butterscotch & cinnamon discs; constantly keep candy in my mouth (oral fixation) for the first two weeks. Been 4 years now. After the first month, you begin to hate the smell of smoke again. It's nasty! Besides, it so passe to smoke anywhere; even here in the Rust/Bible belt, you can't smoke in bars... the casinos are the only public places where one can smoke.
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    Jun 15, 2013 10:45 AM GMT
    Quitting smoking was the hardest thing I ever had to do. I was practically seeing cigarettes floating around me.
    Different things work for different people. I couldn't go cold turkey. I made sure I smoked less every day and never smoked the whole cigarette. At the end I would go outside and take a hit and put it out for next time.
    Try everything and don't give up. I've seen too many people die terrible deaths from lung cancer.
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    Jun 15, 2013 11:04 AM GMT
    Just quit. Don't need any of that medication b.s. just keep at it. Just like anything though your gonna fuck up. Don't get discouraged just keep trying. It took me like a full year of saying I'm "quitting" to actually not smoke anymore. I miss what it did for me but it doesn't do that anymore. You adapt don't worry you'll find something else that relaxes you. Try to not make it a big deal too. When I'm thinking "I'm not gonna smoke, I'm not gonna smoke" made me wanna smoke. Find other things to do with your time that you enjoy.
    Good luck