Breaking Old habits

Although I have only posted once before I read most days the members on here who are at the same stage as me, I live your doubts and worries and share your victories. Well done to all. Today is 4 weeks for me (technically a month??) and going ok (ish), no lapses but many (reducing) close calls.

One thing really frustrating me is how I have to keep breaking different habits that all revolve around smoking. I travel almost all the time with work, mainly far flung corners of the globe and it seems that every airrport/country/hotel holds a routine for me that involved smoking. Its like groundhog day that each place i visit as a non -smoker (can I class myself as that?) means I must break another long standing habit (friendship?). I almost feel that I am forced to grieve (cannot think of a better word) for cigarettes over and over again in each familiar place. Next week I will visit Brazil and am dreading going to certain places that I used to be a smoker in. In Italy last week I thought I must be the only person in the country not smoking. I just hope I stay stopped long enough to get all these places and habits out of my system but god its hard. Like having to start a new routine for each of the places I visit.

Anyway rant over but please keep posting everyone, it does help! Thank you.

13 Replies

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  • Hi James

    I completely agree and understand what you're saying. I've been quit almost 3 months and thought I'd got over most of my trigger points.

    But today I went somewhere where I always used to smoke. I dealt with it with no real problem but instead of hardly thinking about smoking at all I found I thought about smoking every hour on the hour! No I didn't want a cig, but that level of though annoyed me as it has been quite a few weeks since I had that level of interference.

    So good luck, well done and keep on facing those triggers and beating them!

  • Hi James,

    I'm also a global business traveller, and I have had similar worries. There's nothing more appealing than being on an all-expenses paid trip to various exotic locations, seeing the exquisite scenery, and having access to an endless flow of free booze at one's disposal....

    Screee-ee-ee-ee-ch!!! Regardless the gratuitous nature of the lifestyle, the consequences are just the same.

    Basically, the effects of smoking doesn't discriminate between social boundaries... We're all at the same risk, and we all need to look at the same consequences.

    Alex.

  • Thats given me food for thought Divingdale! I only manage 2 or 3 dives each year on my travels but never considered how stopping smoking would effect them. Perhaps I can make my tank last more than about 15 minutes now:D

  • LOL. Not to start with you won't!:D My first dive after stopping was weird. I don't breath much normally but that first dive .. Whoosh air gone! Back to normal now I'm glad to say!

    Traveling and not smoking is hard, mainly because the damn things are so cheap everywhere else. But comfort yourself with the thought that you'll no longer be cramming yourself into those hideous smoking booths they still have in some airports!

    Good luck

  • so true

    Although I have only posted once before I read most days the members on here who are at the same stage as me, I live your doubts and worries and share your victories. Well done to all. Today is 4 weeks for me (technically a month??) and going ok (ish), no lapses but many (reducing) close calls.

    One thing really frustrating me is how I have to keep breaking different habits that all revolve around smoking. I travel almost all the time with work, mainly far flung corners of the globe and it seems that every airrport/country/hotel holds a routine for me that involved smoking. Its like groundhog day that each place i visit as a non -smoker (can I class myself as that?) means I must break another long standing habit (friendship?). I almost feel that I am forced to grieve (cannot think of a better word) for cigarettes over and over again in each familiar place. Next week I will visit Brazil and am dreading going to certain places that I used to be a smoker in. In Italy last week I thought I must be the only person in the country not smoking. I just hope I stay stopped long enough to get all these places and habits out of my system but god its hard. Like having to start a new routine for each of the places I visit.

    Anyway rant over but please keep posting everyone, it does help! Thank you.

    You described this feeling so well ! I am 23 days and still grieving !

  • I can so relate to your story of triggers. There are so many times when I get into a situation where I used to smoke, back comes the urges, and I too grieve for the loss of what seems a dear friend, which is rather ridiculous as no way are cigarettes a friend. It is so hard to keep going but keep going we must, to have come this far to cave in would be terrible. Good luck with it all.

  • Yep, very well described James 65.

    I'm only 16 days into my quit and feel that I've mastered all the daily breaks of habit, but like you I've travelled a fair bit and wonder what it'd be like to sit at a Vegas Blackjack table and not smoke, or walk round Woodbury Common in NY when it's so cold you can't feel your hands but always managed to roll a ciggie, or laying on a holiday beach releasing 50 weeks of stress with each exhale.

    I guess it's just another battle in the war, but it's a war I'm determined to win so I'll have to find answers.

    Best of luck to all....

  • Horse - I've had those thoughts too. I can cope with going out for a few drinks and not smoking but already i have thought about when we may return to our honeymoon destination - sitting on the beach, waiter service, and one smoke after another. I know that in reality, it won't make the holiday or any other experience less enjoyable but it was a way of saying - i am relaxed now.

    Kenjifujima - great name - welcome! :D

  • I hope kenjifujima is genuine, the warning signs always appear for me when anyone attaches a website(s) link totally unrelated to the subject on this forum. I found a guy earlier selling trips to India.

    Hope I'm just being cynical but I've learnt that some people will go to any lengths to make a quid.

    MrsCP - the problem is the memory, the association of smoking and a specific location is based on experiences as James 65 said, somehow we have to elliminate the memories of smoking from those experiences.

    I have no idea how of course !

  • You've hit the nail on the head! I don't actually want a cigarette and I really don't want to be a smoker any more but somehow I feel that I've been falsely relaxing since I quit and when I picture myself in all of the places I go to when I am truly relaxing I have a glass of wine and a cig (or 3)... I love my garden and planted lots of new plants a few weeks ago but I've not been out there for over a week to water them and have even been thinking about moving :o

    I am sure we will manage to create new non-smoking memories of these places - and I really feel for those of you whose daily life continually gives you more habits to break - it is possible to break the habits - we all used to smoke in airports, train stations, trains, planes, pubs, restaurants, offices, the tube... and we all reluctantly got used to not doing that ;)

  • Well a brief update for anyone interested. About halfway through the trip in S America and I cannot lie it is tough, very tough. However despite temptation sometimes almost beyond endurance I have not caved. I would like to be more more positive and encouraging for others but quite honestly I cannot. Its ghastly and I will not lie and say otherwise. Onwards and upwards (I hope)

  • James65 - well done buddy.

    Despite extreme temptation you haven't caved in, for this you deserve huge credit.

    Stick with it, you know it's worth it....

  • Well a brief update for anyone interested. About halfway through the trip in S America and I cannot lie it is tough, very tough. However despite temptation sometimes almost beyond endurance I have not caved. I would like to be more more positive and encouraging for others but quite honestly I cannot. Its ghastly and I will not lie and say otherwise. Onwards and upwards (I hope)

    Well, maybe you can hold back from congratulating others for now, and let others congratulate you. :D

    WELL DONE!!!

    Now, hang in there ok?

    Alex.

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