I smoked cigarettes for a little over fifteen years and finally kicked those cancer sticks to the curb, once and for all. Now that I've done it, I figured I'd share my story in order to help other people do the same thing. Because really, at the end of the day, you don't want to be a smoker, do you? Of course you don't. Believe me I know about all of the reasons to smoke: You like the taste of a cigarette, you like the way it calms your nerves, it's cool, it's a way to relax, you're addicted to nicotine, etc. etc. etc. Coming from a person who smoked for over a decade and believed (and used) all of those reasons for smoking, let me let you in on a little secret. They're all BS! Every last one of them.
Without getting into to all the details of my smoking let me start by saying I started smoking when I was 18 years old. Right around the time I tasted alcohol for the first time. In all honesty, I started smoking because I thought it was cool to smoke (I didn't mind the buzz either), but I started because I was curious and I thought it looked “cool". Then I woke up one day, fifteen years older, and still a smoker. The entire time I smoked I knew it was gross, but still thought that it was cool in some way shape or form. I had tried to quit 3 or 4 times during that period of time, but it never took.
Then one day it hit me. All of the times that I'd tried to stop smoking I tried to change the behavior of smoking and that was it. I wanted everything else to remain the same, and just not smoke any longer. Now that I'm finally out, I realize why that simple fact made it so hard. In order to be successful you have to change more than just the fact that you smoke. Below were the 3 big things that I had to change in order to achieve success:
My Thinking - I had to change the way I thought about quitting smoking. Everyone and their brother want to tell you how hard it is to stop, don't buy into the hype! Coming from a guy who successfully did it without gum, patches, pills, or hypnosis, it's NOT that hard to stop smoking. Don't believe the hype.
My Acquaintances - During the time I was stopping, I tried to stay away from people who smoked. It helped to not smell it and such. Now I can smell it and think it's disgusting. But not being around other smokers helped tremendously. I stopped going to bars, also. The energy of bars and people sitting around drinking and smoking is no good for anyone, let alone someone quitting smoking.
My Behaviors - As a smoker, taking a run was out of the question. Not only did I not feel like it, my lungs couldn't handle it. When I quit, I started running. If I wanted to smoke, I went for a run. Before I knew it I was not only back in shape, I didn't smoke anymore. You don't have to run. Going for a walk in place of running would work just fine.
That's how I stopped smoking once and for all. And truly, it wasn't even that hard. I really think the biggest thing is changing the way you “think" about quitting. Tell yourself how easy it will be, rather than how difficult. Don't watch the news stories or read the articles telling you how difficult it is. Anyone telling you how difficult it is going to be is probably trying to sell you something to make it “seem" easier. I'm telling you not to waste your valuable time or money on any of that stuff. You were given everything you need to stop smoking by virtue of the fact that you started in the first place.
Trevor Kugler - Co-founder of JRWfishing and founder of yourmoneyconnection.com Trevor has more than 15 years of business experience and currently raises his three year old daughter in the heart of trout fishing country - Montana.
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