“Giving up smoking is the easiest thing in the world. I know because I’ve done it thousands of times.”
– Mark Twain
I have been smoker for the last 10 years with occasional short breaks and up until recently I was smoking one pack every other day. Pretty average smoker, I would say.
It all started back in high school where some classmates asked me to join them for a ciggie or two during the school and little did I know by the time I had moved to the university I was full-time smoker. Smoking helped me to bond with many peers and more senior students and it was kind of social thing, I had made lots of smoking buddies, we had something in common. Well, at least that is how I felt about it back then. I took this nasty habit further into my 20’s and this coincided with the time when smoking was no longer cool, nor socially acceptable. It started bothering me more and more. I noticed that it’s not just a bad habit but in fact I was addicted to nicotine without realizing I am trapped.
I was just over 25 years old when I decided it’s time to man up and take care of my health by researching nutrition, healthier lifestyle, artificial food ingredients (Aspartame, MSG, partially and fully hydrogenated oils etc.); I started paying more attention to the benefit of exercises, and how it affects longevity and quality of life. However, one thing was missing for the complete package – I was a regular smoker during the week and heavy smoker during parties/weekends when I went out. I often felt miserable the next day and morally hung over as I realized that I spent too much money and smoked too many cigarettes. Very irresponsible, I know. Not to mention, I had to make regular breaks from works every few hours as I had to get my fix and that felt like priority.
Some of my ex-girlfriends were smokers too which made it more difficult to give up (well, you have nothing to give up by quitting, no sacrifice is made) not to mentioned I did not get any kick in my butt to do something about my health. Fast forward few years and my new non-smoking girlfriend (and future wife) helped me clear my head and give it another go as there was no way it would work out between us and deep down I knew that I would not love myself if I continued smoking. Let’s face it – most smokers secretly want to give up smoking, they just don’t know how. If you are a smoker and are looking for ways to improve your quality of life, get more money, look better, gain confidence – quitting smoking is the single best thing you can do!
Firstly, I was trying to come up with all the alleged pros for smoking – it helps concentrate and fights boredom, gets my hands busy, makes me look older, cooler etc. – all of these are debunked in external materials I will mention further below. Then the cons – bad breath, yellow teeth & nails, pale skin, bad mood, lethargic body, over £50K spent during your lifetime, Emphysema (irreversible lung disease), clogged arteries and consequent risk of heart attack, reduced quality and length of life, numerous cancers. The list can go on but you get the point. It was evident that quitting smoking (including any tobacco and nicotine containing products) has so much to gain and nothing to lose. It is all in your head!
I came across Joel Spitzer who has been helping people to quit smoking for the last forty years by going cold turkey whilst understanding how nicotine addiction works. He also has large online community on WhyQuit.com and he has provided countless free materials, real life stories (including sad ones where people have waited too long). He has big YouTube channel where each video breaks down specific aspects of smoking (withdrawal, relapses, cravings, Nicotine Replacement Therapy and why it does not work, etc.). He offers consolidated version of these materials as a free PDF eBook. Very practical and easy to use.
I spent days going through his site and it made me realize what I’ve been doing to myself for these many years. As a result, I still smoked however I no longer enjoyed the process. Some time had passed and I decided to give it another go and so I started one-week’s challenge. Halfway through the process I came across Allen Carr’s Easyway to Stop Smoking. I read the book which took me a day or two to read however, for those who do not wish to read the book, I would simply suggest getting a one hour video that illustrates the same principles. I am happy to announce that I am a non-smoker now and have never been happier. Apparently this method works so well that over 90%, who have seen/read it, have never taken another cigarette and have embraced healthy, nicotine-free life. Here is a small 1 min clip from Jay Leno’s interview with Ashton Kutcher from November 2006.
It worked for me, as it did for tens of thousands other people, including these celebrities: Ashton Kutcher, Richard Branson, Anthony Hopkins, Michael McIntyre, Jason Mraz, David Blaine and many others.
What about you? Are you a smoker, non-smoker or an ex-smoker? If so, how was your personal journey and how are you enjoying yourself?
P.S. I am in no way affiliated to WhyQuit.Com or Easyway however I am utmost grateful to the respectful authors for their contribution and their mission.
P.P.S. ‘Bonus material’ – a poem I wrote a while ago but it is still relevant.
Time To Say Goodbye
Don’t know where should I start
But for sure it’s time for us to part
Maybe you are not ready for this yet
But you must had suspicion, I bet
We were together for 10 years-seems like forever
I now realize, it wasn’t real, I must have had fever
Insomnia, bad breath etc- I had the whole package
I don’t think I’m ready for this type of marriage
Sure, I’d made many friends just by knowing you
But now I’ve got new hobbies, more healthy than co2
I can appreciate what it’s like to feel free
This is unconditionally me, eye-opened, ready to see
Don’t try to win me back, it’s over
I don’t need this mind f**king terror
Sing to someone else your lullaby
Farewell, adieu and goodbye!
Yours truly, nicotine free,