Quit Smoking: You Only Need To Succeed Once!

There’s nothing like stating the obvious because it’s true. Once you have quit smoking for long enough and feel confident that you won’t smoke again, you have succeeded. Having reached that point myself some time ago, I’m thrilled to know that I finally managed to defeat my tobacco addiction.

The first several times I tried, it wasn’t easy. A lot of the quitting happened in my head but didn’t translate into the desired action. I knew that I wanted to quit, but I couldn’t get started. There was always tomorrow. At times, I felt really determined to succeed before going to bed and woke up the next morning wondering what on earth I had been thinking the previous night. When I did have the resolve to quit, it often lasted only a few hours before I caved in. Most times, I wasn’t able to hold out for more than a day, and although I once managed to quit for a week, deep-down I wasn’t convinced that I would manage to stay quit. After all, I was a smoker. In fact, there were times when I felt that there was no point in even contemplating quitting smoking. I simply gave up.

There is nothing unique to my story. Many smokers go through these same thought processes, telling themselves that they want to quit, but not managing to stay away from tobacco addiction. That is the nature of the beast. Smoking gradually transforms you into a smoker. Smoking becomes a part of your identity, defining who you are. After enough cigarettes, you no longer just smoke; you are ‘a smoker’. There are some people that manage to quit just like that, but for the vast majority of people, it is a struggle. Most people have to try a couple to several times before they succeed.

Shirking the ‘smoker’ identity is probably the hardest part about quitting. It requires a change of mindset and quite some time. Both go hand in hand. When you first quit, it may feel like you’re a smoker who’s trying to not smoke. The time between your last cigarette and the present isn’t long enough to declare victory. You’re still a novice ex-smoker, with little experience. More time and practice is needed before you can start thinking in terms of detachment from smoking. You may go through one or more periods of hesitation and self-doubt. After a while (weeks, months?), you will get to the point where you feel more confident and optimistic. Finally, you will get to a point where there has been enough time and distance between when you quit and the present for you to think less and less about smoking.

The key thing with this process is to believe that you can manage life without smoking. Millions have succeeded before you, and millions continue to try every day. Given the right mindset and enough time, many of them will cross over from being a smoker to becoming a confident ex-smoker. It may take a couple or more attempts before you manage to reach your goal, but keep trying!

You only need to succeed once!

5 Replies

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  • Very well said, great post ad oh so very true.

    Great post

  • Hi Alex76, I have just started my second month as a non smoker and your post sounds like my story even though I have a long way to go to go before I consider myself truly a non-smoker.

    Even though I have wanted to stop smoking for many years it came to the point that wanting to stop was not enough, the question became what was I prepared to do (or not do) to make it a reality? The answer of course is, in order to succeed, I am prepared to not pick up a cigarette !!! Sounds obvious but not easy. But so far I am sticking to it.

    Thank you for your post, it is very helpful and supportive for those of us just commencing our new life :)

  • Yes, a good post. It brings back memories of when I started smoking nearly 40 years ago. You could smoke on the upper deck of buses still, in cinemas, even the bank tillers were allowed to smoke at their cash desks. I absolutely hated the stench of the smoker's habit, how it made my eyes sore, how it made me cough. And then I go and try it myself. I had to persevere though; I disliked the taste, the burning in my throat, and especially the dizziness and nausea. But I carried on until I became a smoker. But it wasn't until the addiction was heavily embedded that I really saw myself as a smoker.

    I think the journey back from the smoking world may take as long. Although I would like to say with honesty 'I am not a smoker', it doesn't ring true yet. Probably not surprising as I'm just coming up to 4 weeks. That doesn't mean I'm going to smoke again. It just means I feel a bit of a fraud at the moment. It also means I keep my guard strong. So.........I'm not smoking and I'm remaining strong. Yessss! Wins all round.

    Anyone who's reading these posts and hasn't quit or posted yet, come on in. The water's lovely, but choppy at times. In the past few weeks, I've been studying smokers a bit, and they don't look that happy, content or satisfied. I might be projecting my sentiments onto them, but often, I really don't think they are happy in their smoking world. I frequently was not happy with myself when smoking. That's something I need to hold onto in my quit journey.

  • When I read your recent threads Alex76, I find myself wondering why it sounds like something out of a magazine.

    Then I find this: krossedward.com/2015/04/01/...

    Not forgetting the last thread you started which looks remarkably similar to this: krossedward.com/2015/03/15/...

    There is nothing wrong with quoting the work of other people; I've done it myself, but always quoted my source. To fail to do so has a name - plagiarism.

  • Thanks very much to everyone for your kind comments. As Egg pointed out, the same text is published in more than one source, but please rest assured I am the author and copyright owner.

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