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How to Get Rid of Cigarettes...

  "The early days were wearing, difficult, testing, and trying, which at the time seemed would take a miracle to survive. Each day had to be lived through and endured, one moment at a time. However he persisted and as the months came and went, matters began slowly to improve. The cravings became fewer and less powerful and the clouds of depression, that had replaced the smoke, began to lift. Above all else, health benefits galore! Breathing became easier, stamina and tolerances were replenished, once more delicate aromas could be sensed..."

extracted from "the Smokers' Home Companion"

A Practical Method

  If you have reached this page, then you could be one of the many who find it impossible to simply wake up one morning and stop smoking. Time and again you must have asked yourself "What is the big secret to succesfully getting rid of cigarettes?". Nearly everyone is looking for short cuts or a quick fix. The news is, there are none (think of the person who loosely propelled herself into "quitting" by using nicotine gum, and is still chewing it 3 years later, not realising that nicotine is itself metabolised into a carcinogen).

  Only when every attempt to stop smoking has seemingly failed and real desperation has set in, will the actual truth of the situation be faced by the smoker. Then, and only then, when there is no longer any possibility of evading the issues can something actual be done about it... (There is nothing quite like being at ones wits end to focus the mind.) There probably is only the one fundamental method (with many variations) that will help someone get rid of cigarettes, needing a big helping of that rare commodity "Self Discipline" to make it work.

It begins by clearly understanding the predicament...

This predicament can be viewed in three parts...

Part 1...The Predicament

  Earlier it was indicated that the smoker is caught in some kind of a trap, here is another way of looking at it.

  We have all experienced acute difficulty in trying to get rid of cigarettes. Most smokers who try rarely succeed on their first attempts. On average it takes seven good tries at it before the smoker eventually breaks free. You can definitely take good heart from knowing that in tackling cigarette addiction it is probabaly one of the hardest things you will ever do. And now to repeat: If you wish to successfully get rid of cigarettes then careful preparation is absolutely vital...

  Most smokers refuse to admit to the simple fact that they have a serious cigarette addiction. Because of tardiness by the government in relaying all the relevant scientific information concerning smoking to the general public, most don't realise how powerful cigarette addiction can actually be...

  It is probable that when starting smoking, it was viewed as something pleasant with which to wile away the time with ones companions, a useful prop, an aid in actualizing the theater of one's life. But like some monster in a horror movie the prop grew a life of its own and turned on its user. Taking over the starring role, becoming 'permanent attached' - needful and needing to be participant in every waking hour.

  The evidence is overwhelming. Cigarette smoking gradually insinuates itself into just about every action a person might make. Its not long after starting when it becomes: 'Get up, smoke a cigarette. Have breakfast, smoke another two cigarettes. Go to work, smoke a cigarette on the way. Light up before getting down to business. Light up again, its the coffee break. Need to think heavily? Then have a cigarette ( Do watch Gregory Peck's performance in the film "12 O'clock High"). Hear bad news? have another smoke. The Boss is on the phone, better light up another!'... and so it goes. It only stops with the last cigarette, at night just before going to sleep. (Do check up on the statistics for smokers who go up in smoke from smoking in bed).

Part 2...The Occupied Territory

1914 Invasion of Belgium

  The smoker should think that he or she is a city or a country that has been occupied by an invading army. The army entered via a Trojan Horse - the Trojan Horse of tobacco company advertising and false consumer confidence.
  Invading armies tend to take over the previous government and set up a puppet regime. They erase the previous culture and superimpose their own. Insitute oppressive laws, and alien ways of life. Tax and enslave the local population to support their war machine.
  Getting rid of cigarettes needs to be approached in the way of a local Ninja Resistance, developing into a full scale guerilla war that eventually leads to a popular uprising. Better done with assistance from a friendly country that has successfully beaten back the invaders. And since it no longer has the problem is in a position to offer real help.

  For success the Ninja Resistance needs a plan, here is a suggestion...

  1. To entirely get rid of the invaders (Kaiser Nick O'Tine(+) and his Cigarette Armies).
  2. Replace the puppet regime with a new government.
  3. Take steps to ensure they can never return.
  4. Realise the need for an extensive period of recovery
  5. Heal and rebuild natural strengths.
  6. Find ways to erase all traces of the occupation.
  7. Rediscover a natural culture in oneself, one not dependent upon cigarettes.

Part 3...The Personal Predicament.

  What has this invasion turned the smoker into?
  Most smokers smoke whenever they feel like it and have let their brain become unconditionally addicted to nicotine, it will thus resist all efforts to reign it in. The brain has no regard for its own or its hosts mortality and sees no reason to stop smoking. (It has become the defacto puppet governor, surrogate to the will of the tobacco companies). If you do, it will do everything in its power to stop you from stopping. It will produce a big dose of the following...anxiety, depression, nerves, extreme behaviours of all kinds including fits and shouting, nightmares, extremes of egotism and self centeredness, temptations, deceptions and so on... It is crucial to offset as much of this nonsense as possible. This can be easily accomplished by simply adopting the following method..

  1. Give up the idea of quitting, take on board the idea of "Getting Rid of Cigarettes".
  2. Adopt a new role, that of a Ninja Researcher into getting rid of cigarettes.
  3. Use yourself as the main test subject.
  4. Regain control of the brain and physical systems by using timing to regulate all cigarette smoking as the primary method.
  5. Turn smoking cigarettes into a maintenance regime.
  6. Get a handle on the socio-psychological problems that keep you lighting up for no good reason. (This subject is a whole book in itself)
  7. Stop Smoking Cigarettes.

  As a Ninja Researcher you will need to be able to...

  1. Thoroughly understand the reasons why the research is being undertaken.
  2. Plan the research, set aims and objectives, make forecasts.
  3. Consistently keep good records, maintain a journal.
  4. Write down all your experiences, feelings and thoughts.
  5. On a regular basis make an impartial assessment as to how you are doing, and update your progress.
  6. In the light of experience; seek further knowledge and devise new approaches consistent with the aims.
  7. Keep on going come rain, come shine, come what-may and don't ever stop.

An Application of the Method

  1. For a full period of nine months smoke THREE CIGARETTES PER DAY....
  2. For the first two to five weeks gradually cut down cigarette consumption until it is three cigarettes per day. Set beforehand the times when to smoke these "maintenace" cigarettes, and stick to it. Show the brain that you mean business.
  3. Make a timed appointment to smoke one cigarette every five hours during the day, the FIRST to be smoked FIVE HOURS after arising, and never before noon! Pre-select the actual times when to smoke these three cigarettes. Leave a window of say 15 minutes either way, but make the rule that if the appointment is missed that cigarette is missed. To make matters more personal try giving these cigarettes apt names in the way AMTRAK names trains. ( Watch out for the brain waking you at three in the morning demanding to smoke!!!)
  4. During the last five months occasionally play with smoking less cigarettes Two, One or even None. Try to keep smoking until the full nine months are up, then STOP....
    (however should the time feel right, stop earlier.)
  5. Make a record in the journal of how many cigarettes are smoked each day and keep this Journal up to date, even when smoking no cigarettes. Continue for the full six to seven years that it will take to completely get rid of the effects of cigarette smoking from the mental, emotional, psychological and physical systems.
  6. Self-Determine to never smoke again and pay back by helping others to get rid of cigarettes..
  7. Let it pass....and... "Live long and prosper" in the newer life.
all butts in a row

Simple it is, difficult it may be, but a happier and much healthier 'You', you will eventually become...


Timing

 Smokers tend to agonise over their so called "Quit Date". So timing will be revisited, on this occassion applying a different analogy...
 You are in front of a firing squad about to be shot, you shout Bang! the soldiers get distracted and are all looking elsewhere. Do you (a) Make a run for it? (b) Wait until they remuster, then put your hand up and ask permission to leave?
 Many failed attempts get 'blamed' on wrong timing.
 We have been given many unfortunate trainings by our mentors, the tendency to hand out 'blame' is one of them. 'Blame' and 'Failure' along with cigarettes share the same attribute, they are all utterly useless. Reason is a much more useful employee. After getting rid of cigarettes, stress will still be there, needing to be dealt with. A good time is any time, any problems that arise will always lie in the preparations, and if insufficient, then the attempt will founder. Keep making attempts, using the feedback to do it better next time. Every attempt adding to an eventual final and lasting success.
  A closing analogy from the story of 'Carmen'... When the last cigarette has been smoked, a new life will appear, one of a 'Torreador of Avoidance' taking on the unpredictable 'Bull' of the brain and the previous smoking life ...success will lie not in confrontation but in a different kind of timing, that of not being where the bull is, until it eventually surrenders and the 'smoking life' dies of exhaustion.

Helps

 Nicotine patches, inhalers and gum, anti-depressant pills, acupuncture, herbal recipes, expensive secret methods, group therapy, hypnosis, gizmos of all kinds and such...can be only secondary to the method. Most of these additional helps rarely work alone and some can be really dangerous. Rather than expecting an instant remedy for getting rid of cigarettes, it would be much better to make the following admission..
  "It was I who got myself into this mess, it has to be me getting myself out of it."
  There are no miracles in getting rid of cigarettes.

  However, fighting fire with fire can sometimes help, here are some ideas for starters...

cinnamon sticks
  • D.I.Y. aroma therapy using natural oils. Replace the smell of cigarettes with the fresh scents of lavender, ylang ylang, pine or any aromas that encourage...
  • A toothpick or chewing on a cinnamon stick can be used to satisfy the urge to put something into the mouth.
  • A glass of pure water drunk to allay any hunger cravings.
  • Some jasper worry beads to play with.
  • Special music, for example Bizets opera "Carmen" to listen to at times of stress. It is the romantic story involving a gipsy girl who makes cigarettes, a bandit and a torreador....?
  • Inventing an imaginary brand of virtual cigarettes, made by an imaginary tobacco company for contemplation when it gets very rough.
  • Face the monster; an example would be to deliberately collect old cigarette advertisng...etc?

  Get the Ninja Researcher working and experiment making a unique list.

  And having got going keep on discovering original ways and means that will help in getting through the difficult times ahead.

  For example: developing a personal 'Watch It' list can be very useful...

  • Humor...Memo to self: Sometimes look on the lighter side of it all. Make a scrap book of 'cigarette smoking' cartoons.
  • Proportion...Memo to self: Must stop boring everyone to tears with stories of 'My attempt...'.
  • Tension...Memo to self: Anticipate and back off in difficult circumstances; avoid conflict.
  • ...etc
Cavalier smoking
A fifty year old cigarette ad from England

Although being Cavalier can be fun, its partly to blame for what gets smokers into this fix in the first place. For a while, anyone trying to get rid of cigarettes is just going to have to be happy being a plain boring old Roundhead. (Note: Cigarettes were invented 200 years after the English civil war; Cavaliers, if they smoked at all, would have smoked pipes. Accuracy has never been a strong point in cigarette advertising.)


Let it Pass.

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