Motivation Vs De-motivation

Hi everyone -- I'm a newbie to the forum, having just joined today. I'm 37, and have smoked around 40 cigarettes per day since I was 19 years old. And I'm desperate to quit!

I started cutting down the number of cigarettes I smoke to under 10 a day a few weeks ago. I purchased a nicotine mouth spray yesterday and started to use it to replace them -- I'm sad to say that I haven't managed it yet, but I'm down to 3-4 per day. Hopefully, I'll get down to zero very soon.

Earlier this year, my cousin died of lung cancer caused by smoking. He was just 45 years young. This certainly had a big impact on my motivation to quit; however, I recently got married and I'll be damned if I'm going to gamble with my health any longer. We went on honeymoon, and the hotel we stayed at was full of elderly couples. It really hit home with me how wonderful it must be to reach old-age with the person that you love. I used to be scared of growing old; now I'm terrified of dying young! (yes, I'm aware of the sad story of Brian). Of course, quitting won't mean that I'll/we'll get there -- life's a hard journey -- but I don't want to stack the odds against it.

As determined as I am, I do have one big doubt -- I often feel as though I've aready done the damage; that I'm destined to end-up like my cousin even if I do quit; that I've already been given a death sentence by lung cancer. The thought of this haunts me, and I think about it every day. It's really effecting my quality of mental health and my life in general. I was just wondering if anyone else has/has had similar thoughts? :confused:

20 Replies

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  • You need to read this ! cause all you are doing is torturing your self :)

  • Thanks

    You need to read this ! cause all you are doing is torturing your self :)

    That's a really interesting article with some good points. Thanks.

  • Legs_Eleven, you have no idea how your last paragraph has run bells with me, I'm almost a month smoke free and like you recently saw someone far too young die from lung cancer.

    But each day you are smoke free is a positive and don't torture yourself, I think that's the old nicotine demon at work telling you "Why quit, damage is done"....well tell the old demon to do one, believe me you'll feel so much better when you start thinking positive thoughts of giving up.

    Keep using this forum, there are a wonderful bunch of people on here who will help you.

    Good luck :D

  • I Know How You Feel

    Your last paragraph reminds me of myself. Of late I have had those types of thoughts and it's doing my head in. I have set a quit date but keep telling myself that's 2 weeks more of smoking. What if one of those I have in those 2 weeks is the one that triggers everything of.

    I feel disgusted at myself everytime I light a cigarette but stll smoke it like a real old fag hag.

    I had a lump removed from my breast a few years ago but don't remember any doctors telling me to stop smoking. It wasn't cancerous but the 2 weeks waiting for my results were horrendous. Everytime I looked at my kids I burst into tears.

    Smoking is a sick, disgusting drug and does all sorts to our minds. I don't know if I have become more aware of the dangers since being on this site, or whether that nagging thought is a sixth sense warning me to quit.

    You have cut down so much and I hope you manage to cut them out altogether. Don't let those thoughts become reality x

    The fact that you've set a quit date is a very positive first step, and I think you're doing it the right way. I talked to my GP a few days ago about quitting; he was very encouraging -- of course -- but recomended that I wait until the new year. I can see the logic in this, but I'm going to talk to him again next Wednesday and, like yourself, set a quit date and take it from there -- agian, like yourself, I'm eager to get it underway as soon as possible. In truth, my 'cutting-down' wasn't an intentional method to quit -- I tried to quit cold turkey a few weeks ago, but the cravings were too intense. I felt so bad when I gave in to temptation. It has, though, resulted in me smoking a lot less (albiet unintended). It also gave me a good opportunity to see if the mouth spray would benefit me -- which it certainly seems to.

    I'm sorry to hear that you share the same thoughts as me, but it's good to know that I'm not alone. You didn't mention how long or how much you've smoked (I've smoked about 40-a-day for about 20 years) so I understand completely. If you want to talk about it, feel free -- a problem shared is a problem halved, as they say.

    A long time ago, when I was a kid, my mum had a lump removed from her breast -- I remember the worry that she and my dad went through (I was too young to have a real understanding at the time) so I can really appreciate what you're saying. I've had my own share of similar health scares myself. I'm glad to hear that everything turned out ok -- that was also the case for my mum; she's in her late 60's now and in very good health. My mum has never smoked; my dad did, but gave it up 30+ years ago. He's also in good health.

    Again, I feel the same way as you when I smoke -- but imagine how good it will feel when you've quit. We may end-up having a similar quit date, so we can always share our progress and encourage each other on this forum (along with lots of other members). I've also had that 'sixth-sense' feeling a LOT. I think it's just natural that, at some point, you become all to aware of the REAL dangers of this habit -- in my case, I think that I've just 'grown-up' and the events that have happened in my life have made me take notice.

    Good luck, and keep me up-to-date with your progress.

  • Legs_Eleven, you have no idea how your last paragraph has run bells with me, I'm almost a month smoke free and like you recently saw someone far too young die from lung cancer.

    But each day you are smoke free is a positive and don't torture yourself, I think that's the old nicotine demon at work telling you "Why quit, damage is done"....well tell the old demon to do one, believe me you'll feel so much better when you start thinking positive thoughts of giving up.

    Keep using this forum, there are a wonderful bunch of people on here who will help you.

    Good luck :D

    Thank you for your very kind and encouraging reply. And VERY well done with going a whole month smoke free -- that's fantastic! I'm still looking forward to my first day smoke free in 20 years :) And maybe you're right -- my dad quit in his mid-thirties; he's 68 now, and in great health. I think he may be a good influence for me and can help with some support and encouragment.

    If you don't mind me asking, how did you quit -- i.e. cold-turkey, NRT, etc? Did you visit your GP? How long and how much did you smoke?

    And you're absolutely right: I think I've definately made a good move in joining the forum -- I've met a few great people already. I only put my post up an hour or so and I've already had loads of great replies!

    Thanks again!

  • Legs Eleven......welcome to the best place in the whole world......

    you will never take another step alone.......

    this wonderful cyber family will keep you going even in your darkest hour....

    good luck with your quit

    :) Michelle

  • Hey there legs,

    Totally understand where you're coming from, but it's time to start turning that negative energy into positive. Redirect that obsession into your quit. If fear for your health is what drives you then that's as good a reason as any to stop, but it shouldn't ruin the quality of the life you have. Take action! Kick the fags into touch. Take back your life again - you'll feel so great for doing it, and perhaps when you feel in control of that aspect the worry won't have such a hold over you.

    Happy quitting!

    Helen x

  • Thank you

    Legs Eleven......welcome to the best place in the whole world......

    you will never take another step alone.......

    this wonderful cyber family will keep you going even in your darkest hour....

    good luck with your quit

    :) Michelle

    Thanks for your very kind message and support. And I'm very happy to meet yet another kind and supportive member of the forum :)

  • Thanks

    Hey there legs,

    Totally understand where you're coming from, but it's time to start turning that negative energy into positive. Redirect that obsession into your quit. If fear for your health is what drives you then that's as good a reason as any to stop, but it shouldn't ruin the quality of the life you have. Take action! Kick the fags into touch. Take back your life again - you'll feel so great for doing it, and perhaps when you feel in control of that aspect the worry won't have such a hold over you.

    Happy quitting!

    Helen x

    Thanks, Helen, for your kind words of support.

    I suppose, if everyone thought like me, the world wouldn't have any happy and healthy ex-smokers in it.

    I suppose, if you tawl the internet for stats on this like I have, you'll find loads of facts telling you about how many smokers and ex-smokers have got this awful illness. I can completely understand it, and it's very important to get this message accross. But you don't find many statistics of ex-smokers who have quit and led long and healthly lives. It's a shame, really, as this information would be really encouraging to people like me -- presuming that the statistics were encouraging, of course (the sceptic in me can't help but feel that, maybe, the statistics aren't that good; maybe, that's why there aren't any? Perhaps there are, but I'm just not looking in the right place? Anyone have any info on this?

    I'm really not trying to be negative -- it's just that this fear of mine is by far the biggest hurdle to me quitting. I honestly feel that, should I get a grip on this, I'll have the strength to quit for good. :(

  • You know what, focus no more on finding statistics, you've got one right in front of you in the form of your Dad! If you look you will always find negatives and positives and have the "what if" or "what's the point now" thoughts....

    I smoked between 20-30 a day and have used Champix, for me it is has been amazing and wish I'd not been put off by the bad press and tried it ages ago!

    Not saying I haven't needed willpower because I have, but I love the smell, taste of not smoking, getting a nice jelly belly in time for the festive season, so Mrs Santa has now got competition :eek:

    Keep positive is always my chant, not always easy and I feel like me that maybe you are still grieving, try to make a positive out of any sadness :)

    Let me know how you're getting on

    Sara

  • oooh and forgot to say I'm the ripe old age of 45 and smoked heavily for around 20 of those.......:)

  • Thanks Sara

    You know what, focus no more on finding statistics, you've got one right in front of you in the form of your Dad! If you look you will always find negatives and positives and have the "what if" or "what's the point now" thoughts....

    I smoked between 20-30 a day and have used Champix, for me it is has been amazing and wish I'd not been put off by the bad press and tried it ages ago!

    Not saying I haven't needed willpower because I have, but I love the smell, taste of not smoking, getting a nice jelly belly in time for the festive season, so Mrs Santa has now got competition :eek:

    Keep positive is always my chant, not always easy and I feel like me that maybe you are still grieving, try to make a positive out of any sadness :)

    Let me know how you're getting on

    Sara

    Thanks, Sara, for helping me get a grip. :o

    You're right. There's a lot more to it than statistics: there are a lot of people with healthy, very young lives who get this illness (some with no apparent risk factors found). And a good many others who, through no fault of their own, have had their short lives tragically cut short from all sorts of other health issues (of which, I'm sad to say, I've known many).

    If I quit, I can say that I did it all for the right reasons. And I could list it right up there amoungst my most significant lifetime acheivements. Whatever happens in the future, at least I can say I did the right thing. I couldn't say that if I continued to smoke! :)

    Besides, I'm going to keep this positive statistic -- from patient.co.uk -- in mind:

    If you stop smoking before the age of about 35, your life expectancy is only slightly less than people who have never smoked.

    If you stop smoking before the age of 50, you decrease the risk of dying from smoking-related diseases by 50%.

  • Thanks, Sara, for helping me get a grip. :o

    You're right. There's a lot more to it than statistics: there are a lot of people with healthy, very young lives who get this illness (some with no apparent risk factors found). And a good many others who, through no fault of their own, have had their short lives tragically cut short from all sorts of other health issues (of which, I'm sad to say, I've known many).

    If I quit, I can say that I did it all for the right reasons. And I could list it right up there amoungst my most significant lifetime acheivements. Whatever happens in the future, at least I can say I did the right thing. I couldn't say that if I continued to smoke! :)

    That's the spirit....at the end of the day you're doing this for YOU......

    all of us know that smoking is a killer.....but we chose to ignore it.....

    Raise a glass to those of us quitters who know we're doing the right thing.....

    grab a quit buddy....as this helps greatly....(what says you Sara?)......

    Michelle :D

  • Keep positive, you've come so far today already and so much to look forward to :D

    If you need a buddy, I'm here :)

  • Thanks Michelle and Sara.

    That sounds like a great idea. We could certainly help each other out. :)

    I may even start a diary -- I'm quite partial to a bit of blogging, so I'll post it on there.

    I think that I'll see the nurse tomorrow and get an appointment. And I'll take it from there.

  • Thanks Michelle and Sara.

    That sounds like a great idea. We could certainly help each other out. :)

    I may even start a diary -- I'm quite partial to a bit of blogging, so I'll post it on there.

    I think that I'll see the nurse tomorrow and get an appointment. And I'll take it from there.

    Nice one...... we shall all quit together :D

  • Hello there Legs Eleven (great name!)

    I can understand why you might think like that, I think we've all had thoughts along those lines.

    To me, life is a bit like a casino - there's an element of chance, which we can't control, and an element of skill/knowledge (lifestyle), which we can. All we can do is try and improve our odds of winning.

    You could put someone in a casino who has absolutely no idea which cards are which (in lifestyle terms, say, a morbidly obese smoker who drinks a bottle of wine everyday and doesn't wear a seatbelt), and they will probably lose all their money (life) pretty fast. They might get lucky, but they probably won't.

    You could also put in a mathematical genius who has played cards since they could walk (non-smoking, physically active, perfect BMI score, moderate drinker etc.) and they probably make money (live to a ripe old age), but they might be unlucky.

    Someone who smokes is someone who has entered the casino and is gambling willy-nilly. By quitting, you're learning how the game works, and are putting your money down more carefully and upping your odds. You might still get a bad hand, but you're very very likely to outlast the ignorant person and you might even make more money than the genius, if you are lucky and get a good hand.

    Sorry, that took longer than I thought it would :o. I do like ana logies though (split the word in two to avoid the ****s).

    Good luck and I hope your quit goes well (that includes Sara and Michelle, too)

  • Hello there Legs Eleven (great name!)

    I can understand why you might think like that, I think we've all had thoughts along those lines.

    To me, life is a bit like a casino - there's an element of chance, which we can't control, and an element of skill/knowledge (lifestyle), which we can. All we can do is try and improve our odds of winning.

    Good luck and I hope your quit goes well (that includes Sara and Michelle, too)

    Thanks for the very informative reply.

    You're very right of course -- and I owe it to everyone that cares about me, and to everyone that I care about -- to improve my odds as much as I can.

    Thanks for the advice.

    P.S. Glad you like the username -- 11 is my lucky number :) I've not mentioned it thus far, but 11 December is my quit date -- wish me luck!

  • Good luck for tomorrow!! :cool:

  • Good luck for tomorrow!! :cool:

    Thanks Sara!

    Yes, it's true: tommorow is my 'quit date'. I've planned it for a while, even though I didn't mention it in my earlier posts.

    I'm not sure which will be more difficult: day 1, tomorrow, or day 2, when I return to the office on Monday for a ten-our shift (which is going to be quite a stressful day).

    I have three breaks during the day and have a long established routine of spending this time outside smoking and chatting with fellow colleagues. Changing this routine is going to be difficult. Fortunately, one of my colleagues is a long-term ex-smoker -- I might chat to him for some extra support. And it helps that my boss quit smoking recently, and has already been encouraging me to quit. I'm sure that she'll be supportive as well, as will most of my team who are mostly non-smokers.

    I know it seems odd to quit at a relatively stressful time, but I'm one of those people who are ALWAYS stressed. :o In fact, I'm counting on this to keep me busy -- and I've got my trusty mouth-spray to use in place of my 'stress cigarette'. :)

    I'm still planning to visit my GP, though -- I just got the ball rolling a bit earlier. Let's see how it goes!

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