I never smoked at school despite all the peer pressure around me, had more interest in sport and outdoor activities. After school I moved onto uni and here 95% of my new friends smoked. I didn’t like it but none of us had much money and I understood that if I tasted taking their smokes, they would run out and could not afford any more, and would have to quit- – - – GRAND PLAN
So I started smoking, I was 20 yrs old. Many times over the years I tried to quit, Every new years resolution was to quit smoking. I tried everything, Pills, The ear stud, injections, anyone’s hair brained schemes and spent more money on trying to stop than on cigarettes themselves.
Years went by and it was first thing in the morning and last thing at night, the same old thing, the hand mindlessly reaching out for the fix. It got so bad that i had cigarettes in every room of the house, in the toilet, in my car, at work so I didn’t have to think where they were,the hand just reached out for the fix.
My wife hated it, every time I “quit ” she was relieved. Soon I took to skulking around, hid in toilets, anything for a smoke. Soon she wouldn’t believe me and taunted me that it wouldn’t last and then the dreaded “I told you so”. I tried hypnosis, faddish diets, weekend non smoking retreats all to no avail.
I was now 36 and smoking 40 a day. It was my daughters 6th birthday. Everyone was having a great time I approached her and said “come and give your daddy a big kiss”, she backed off and shyly said “NO DADDY,YOU STINK”. I felt the blood drain from my face. Its now 25 years on and I have not touched a cigarette since. All the dire warnings of cancer, dying early etc mean nothing to a young person, they are bullet proof. The ONLY way for you to stop smoking, is for YOU to make up your mind. These 4 simple words from my daughter Made up my mind on the spot.
Ok, so I made up my mind, now the tough work begins. Soon the cravings began, I was distraught, moody, sleepless but I got through 2 days. I racked my mind to find out what could ease this torture. One thing was CERTAIN, I was not going back, my 6yr old was never going to say that to me again.
Countless times I caught my hands wandering towards the cigarettes were and had to walk away. Then when I asleep one night (dreaming of a cigarette no doubt) I sat Bolt upright. EUREKA!!! I Had the answer. I hopped into the car and went down to the servo and bought a pack of cigarettes and some gum. I put a few cigarettes in my favorite smoking haunts, office, car.
What I had discovered was that whilst I could see the cigarettes, if I didn’t touch them, I couldn’t put them in my mouth. All I had to concentrate on a relatively simple task of controlling my hands,not trying to control the addiction, the cravings – - – - just my hands. A huge weight was lifted off my mind, and the gum kept my mouth busy.
After a week or too the cravings lessened and I knew I had beaten it, but it took a few years to settle, but to this day i feel that if I touched one I could put it in my mouth.
I also found that food tasted better and I was stacking on the pounds, so I applied my new found skills and applied the No hands rule
Thats my story and I am sure that it would work for everyone as it worked for me.
My name is Barry Smith and I wrote this a few years back and published it in my Camping.r.us