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Become a Non-Smoker

Keywords: Giving up smoking - Stopping smoking - Smoking cessation
 
Have you tried to stop smoking using willpower, nicotine gums, patches, etc.?
Have you perhaps been successful for a period, only to relapse in a moment of 'weakness' or stress?
Unfortunately, unless the psychological and habitual aspects of smoking are adaquately addressed, the risks of relapse may be higher.
 
Every problem was once a solution 

Because the world is so complex, a habit we adopt as a solution in one context can become a problem to be solved in a different context.
 
For most people, smoking was once a solution because it represented positive benefits such as membership of a particular social group, being grown-up, proving oneself, rebelling against authority, or perhaps being cool, glamorous and sophisticated etc. The person takes up smoking in the belief or hope that it will achieve those things. In doing so, they block out anti-smoking health education messages and all knowledge about people who have suffered ill-health or early death from smoking.
 
Usually, the body initially responds to the damage caused by the smoke with coughing, dizziness, nausea, watering eyes and perhaps vomiting. The novice smoker overrides these natural defensive and protective reactions by continuing to smoke so many cigarettes that the body learns to experience it as normal.
 
As the smoking becomes a well-learned habit, some smokers have a lit cigarette in the mouth first thing in the morning before they even open their eyes. The smoker’s mind, too, is captured by the habit: the flow of thoughts is often dominated by words, images and feelings connected with the smoking habit.
 
My task as therapist is to empower you to break out of what might be called your smoking trance and to help you to move forward to a new understanding of your relationship with the world, in which you have new and more useful ways of achieving your outcomes than through the smoking habit. 

Even after having successfully stopped smoking, the representation of the smoking habit is still there in the back of your mind, but it has a different meaning. It becomes as irrelevant to a person’s current life as many other interests they have left in the past.
 

Help Yourself...

Keep a record sheet of your smoking habit and how much you desire each cigarette.
If you wish, you can use these: Smoking Record Sheets (You could cut out the daily sheets and keep them with your cigarettes)
Each time you want a cigarette, BEFORE you light it, make a note of the time, the situation and how much your want it.
Use numbers 1, 2, 3, where 1=Desperate, 2=Moderate, 3=Low.
Each week, review your progress...