Miss the going outside break: I have never... - Quit Support

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Miss the going outside break

Debpenn profile image

I have never smoked inside, therefore I had a routine of going outside for every smoke.  Of course when the weather is nice I loved it.  Now that the spring weather is turning nice, I am thinking more of smokes and missing my smoke breaks.  Every time I go out I want a smoke ! 

How did you all deal with this?

17 Replies
Atlantida profile image
Atlantida3 YEAR WINNER

Hi Deb. You're coming up to your 2nd month smoke-free, things will become easier. In the meanwhile, maybe just avoid those situations in which your brain starts going "oohh, now a ciggy would be really nice". That's your brain setting you up for failure. All our brains's dit it, and we're not particularly dumb, either. ;-)

For me, it was driving. I was used to light up upon entering my car. As I had no workaround for that (can't really avoid my ride to and from work), I had to improvise. I kept mints in the car and started replacing the gesture of lighting up for the gesture of having a mint. But all those other situations that set me up for smoking - meeting the girls outside the office building for a smoke and all that - I just went for avoidance when I was at your current mark of 6 weeks. 

Do you have a pet? If you do, why not go outside to enjoy the spring weather and pet the cat/dog? While you pet your cat/dog, stress levels reduce and both of you enjoy a good time in the spring weather. And you will be substituting something that used to give pleasure for another something that brings you pleasure - and health!

Best success for you!

Debpenn profile image
Debpenn8 MONTH WINNER in reply to Atlantida

Thanks for the reply !  Now that you are at 3 months do you still avoid those situations?

Atlantida profile image
Atlantida3 YEAR WINNER in reply to Debpenn

Hi Deb! It's a lot easier now that I'm coming up to my 4th month smoke free. For instance, last saturday I went out with my friends, all smokers, and we had a lot of fun at a local pub, drinks and concert, lots and lots of smoke around me, but I felt absolutely fine and did not crave a cigarette, not at all actually. I had my nicotine-free vaper with me and just puffed on it when I felt like it - but did not want to trade it in for a cigarette, that's for sure. It felt great, actually. 

The vaper has been a great tool for me. I've been vaping no-nic eliquids for some time now and what it does for me is that I still have that thing in common with my smoking friends, if that makes sense. When we're all together and there's smoke, I still make my own clothes, only these are vapor, much-healthier-than-smoke clouds, ;-)

When I got home from the pub I realized the terrible smoke stink in my clothes from just being there with all the smokers  - yuck! :-D Couldn't get myself to wear my raincoat the next day - it has to go to the drycleaners because now it just seems to smell terrible (didn't bother me when I was a smoker). 

So yes, it does get much better with time, but for now, just try to steer away from those situations that make your brain relate to smoking. Help yourself out. ;-) We'll always be around to help you out as we can, also. 

Atlantida profile image
Atlantida3 YEAR WINNER in reply to Atlantida

Correcting: When we're all together and there's smoke, I still make my own clouds, only these are vapor, much-healthier-than-smoke clouds, ;-)

Hi Deb - I have the same issue, but do not have an answer yet.

 The first 2 weeks were really bad, but currently the cravings (or "longing for a smoke" is probably more accurate ) blows over quite quickly. Whenever i go outside i have a moment where i am looking for the pack of smokes, or when i get outside i instinctively reach for the pockets. I suppose it is not surprising when you consider the past 25 years of a smoke break every hour (or whatever was possible), I am hoping this will just sort of fizzle out.

Some of the literature i have printed from the internet has really helped me with this. One of the good tips i got was to time the duration of the craving, which would last, on average, no longer than 3 min. Timing these cravings helped with getting an "objective" view and helped with understanding that i dont need and certainly dont want to smoke, if that makes sense ?? Anyways, all mind games with me at the moment. The longer i go the less i want to mess this up.

Good luck!


Atlantida profile image
Atlantida3 YEAR WINNER in reply to

"The longer i go the less i want to mess this up." Exactly! 

Deb, this is it: push a day longer, two days longer... you're already 6 weeks in, how fantastic is that? :-)

Debpenn profile image
Debpenn8 MONTH WINNER in reply to

That's a great Mantra to keep in mind!

"The Longer I go - the Less I want to Mess this Up!"

I'm going to keep that on my phone and read it when I get that pang in my throat

jillygirl profile image

I went through the same feeling at first. I found having a mint or sweet to suck helped me.  

Carissa28 profile image
Carissa2810 MONTH WINNER

Hi Deb,

I am feeling the exact same way!!  I never smoked inside either, well I smoke inside my car but that was it!  I am not taking the regular breaks at work like I did as the only place to go besides the parking lot is the smoke shack and they don't like us in the parking lot unless we're pulling in or pulling out!

So, walking out of my home every morning is actually a struggle..i stand there with my hand on the door handle for a few moments take a deep breath and prepare myself for the first step outside.  Then rush to my car and take another deep breath as once again I'm not lighting up upon entering my car.

I Haven't been able to overcome this yet...I am just hoping it will ease soon, I hate feeling like I must stay inside all the time...I've tried tic tacs & gum they distract a little but i'll still feel like I'm missing something...perhaps if we change our thought process like tictac2 suggests it'll help...I find my current process just wastes so much energy with the different emotions just stepping out the door!!!

I sometimes cut coffee stirring straws in half, and will pop one of those between my teeth as I head out and just chew on it.

Debpenn profile image

Thank you all for the great advice and info !  Just knowing that others have the same feelings and are finding ways to overcome helps. 

I have been avoiding going outside because I quit, but over the last week or two I am noticing that I am feeling sad and a bit depressed, I feel like I gave up something that was a huge part of my life (the outside breaks) The change in the weather is making it more noticeable.

I'm trying to use mints and deep breathing and will try the other suggestions.

Thanks :-)

glolin profile image
glolinLONG TERM WINNER in reply to Debpenn

Try reading Allan Carrs easy way to quit smoking...it may just change your thinking and put things into prospective - it's available as a pdf  - just google it and you can download to pic/tablet🤔

PrairiePrincess profile image
PrairiePrincess7 MONTH WINNER

I've been going outside for a few minutes because I really miss going out. Instead I go out and take a big breath of fresh air. I've also started walking my dog regularly to get outside. Or sitting on my deck with a good book and some sunflower seeds. The car has been hard for me too but I put some hard candies in there for when I am wanting to smoke. I laughed at myself for a while because the minute I got in my car I would automatically crack my window. Old habits die hard.

Polly-PV profile image

Isn't it strange-the old habitual way we have of doing things?  I've got a bit of a saying going on too-if you want your life to be different you have to do your life differently! I am of a generation who used to smoke EVERYWHERE-inside, outside, on planes, trains & in automobiles! Cinemas, buses...I even remember smoking rooms in hospitals! Oh Lordy, I'm showing my age here! But I get the going outside on a lovely day, sitting in a pub garden by the side of a river and at the moment the scene doesn't feel 'complete' for you Deb, without a fag in your hand. However, it will turn around. I agree avoidance is the best form of defence at first til you feel stronger but eventually you'll be able to pop outside with the rest of your buddies and actually feel quite smug that you don't have to do that thing anymore!! You'll just be in a different headspace and able to enjoy the sun, smell the roses and just be!! Truly. Honestly. I was at a meeting on Weds this week & trotted outside at break times with the smokers and felt amazing-it was a gorgeous day and I just revelled calmly in that while they're trying to balance baccy tins, fumble with lighters and contorting their faces sucking on that little white tube. I felt free, calm and at peace. And to be truthful, a little sorry for these guys who have yet to see the light. Sound smug? Probably. A bit. But pretty wonderful at the same time. Much love, Poll X

droopyJ profile image

Hiya Deb I agree with Polly 😊 When I go past a bunch of smokers standing outside, I really don't envy them...... I think it looks kinda sad.

Do me a favour, about 5mins after they all get back from having a cig, go smell them..... I don't mean in a  creepy, misuse of personal space I could get arrested way, but in close proximity of them. They will smell really bad. Maybe you will realise it's not the smoking you miss but a bit of gossip or a bunch of people discussing the weather or last nites soaps!!! 😊

Hi Deb,

I came on site all the time to distract myself and I enjoyed helping and supporting people trying their hardest to quit...... My psychological dependence ran its course after 5 months ... I had a hard time quitting....  Thanks to our support family , I'm still not smoking.... I still remind myself why I cannot smoke anymore.. Smoking really scares me... You're doing awesome👏👏👏👏   Just don't take that one puff xx

One thing that may help (that I have been using) is just going for a short walk outside - go the other way from where the smokers are, if they are outside.  Go out and take a short walk and breathe the fresh air, like a quick walk around the block or something. :) Good luck with this. We have to create new habits to break the old, smoking ones.

Ryan2308 profile image
Ryan230816 Months Winner

Hi u are doing amazing keep up the good work... Go outside and breath the fresh air it's really crazy the little things that pop into your head about your old routine but just stay strong it will fade away 🤗

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