Remember when you did the thing you thought you’d never be able to do? Joining the military, winning a game of chess, or maybe you earned a promotion. Do you remember how it felt? Rewarding? Satisfying? Accomplished? You felt that way because you earned a result that you worked so hard for. Do you remember how you go too that point? How did you win the game? How did you become a member of military? How did you earn that promotion? It took patience. Maybe some grit. Maybe some practice.
My husband and I quit smoking in 2017. I was so scared. I had heard the rumors about quitting smoking. The anger, gaining weight, some people even had suicidal thoughts. I had heard people, including my family, say they tried. It didn’t work. They had mood swings. They didn’t have patience. My experience proved those to be true.
But, I knew I had to make a change. I wanted to live a long time. I wanted to be healthy. My husband and I wanted to be able to live a long healthy life together. We wanted to be able to run from a bad guy if we had to. And, what about the Zombie Apocalypse? We had to be prepared! We were at the point where we were developing “smokers cough” and it was awful. It hurt our chest, throat and lungs. Running? Forget it. I would literally skip cardio at the gym because it was so embarrassing. Now, I jus skip cardio because I hate it LOL.
Here’s the thing, we quit! Cold turkey. And never went back. My husband and I had totally different experiences. We picked a day and decided that’s the day we would quit. It was the last day of February. Zero significance to that day, other than the fact it was the last day of the month. His first day was easy peasey. My first day was catostrophic. I had a melt down at the smallest inconvenience. Literally cried on the phone at work. Usually, if a customer was rude or if I just had a bad call, I would go on my break and smoke two cigarettes! Since I vowed to stop smoking, that was not an option. So I cried. I felt trapped. I was so freakin sensitive. And it wasn’t just at work. The habit was so hard to break. But, with determination and support, we got through it. My husband’s rough patch wasn’t until a couple weeks in.
The point is, you can do it too. With love and support. And, a whole lot of determination. Quitting smoking will not be easy. And not to say patches, gum, and pills don’t work. But in my opinion, you don’t need them. I feel like they are used as a marketing scheme to help you feel like you need them so companies can get paid. And, they could possibly cause other health problems. However, do what works. Below are some tips to help you get through it.
- Pick a date and stick to it! This will help you prepare mentally for the change you are about to make.
- Educate yourself before the “due date” so you know what to expect.
- Feel the emotions. You are going to feel like you don’t know your left from your right. One little critique from somebody could send you into a crying spell. CRY. Let it out. We use smoking as a coping mechanism to avoid our feelings. Feel them.
- Go for a walk. When you are having a mood swing (you will notice it right as the facial expression or words leave your brain and are on display for everybody to see), go for a walk. Take a time out. Walk away from the situation. Just tell whoever you are with, that you need a minute. They may want to check on you. If you want them to, fine. If not, let them know you’ll be back in a minute.
- Don’t apologize for quitting. You should let those around you know ahead of time what’s about to happen. And if they don’t support you, they can kick rocks. You don’t need that in your life.
- Quitting smoking is not an all out pass to be an asshole. You still have to live with yourself after the mood swings. And you definitely still have to live with your spouse.
- Chew gum or have a mint. This will help with the oral fixation that your body is used to. I even ate sunflower seeds
- Drink water. I used to go on my break and smoke two cigarettes. When I get nervous or anxious, I drink water. Well, mostly I chew on the straw. But, I do drink the water too.
- Get excited! Think about the money you will save. My husband and each smoked a pack a day at $6 per pack. hats about $85/week that I would love to say we saved, but really it went to bills, or something fun.
- Reward yourself. Whether it’s weekly, monthly, or daily you should reward yourself. It can be a trip, a shirt, or even a milkshake!
Comment below and let me know what your experience was like. Or, if you need any more advice about quitting, let me know. I’d love to share whatever I can to help you quit.