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Weakness and Technical Details, or How It's Done
Moscow Ringroad
cyanide_chic
Bottom pair are mine.To this point I've told you about exactly what I'm doing, and I intend to keep you intimately posted with most of my thoughts and actions, even in matters of potential failure, but still I haven't told you about exactly how I have chosen to begin this doubtlessly interesting task.

There are various ways to break up: Some smokers coming to the same conclusion concerning choice of a new path just quit; others take small steps and allow the occasional failure (for some people that's quite all right, as long as they don't lose their way), whilst others allow more failures than progress just because their decision is not thorough and they haven't managed to convince themselves of... I'm not going to use the words that it's the right decision to make because I'm not interested in telling others what's right and what's wrong.

I truly wish I could say I was one of those who just quit never to ever again get re-acquainted with the substances, but I'm not as I simply am not willing to go through those initial first days of physical torment just to then be forced to deal with the even more craving task of learning to stay away from the poison, when I'm all too well familiar with my ways and how my brain works: For me, the mental addiction is far more intense and persistent than the physical addiction could ever become, and therefore I must do it the other way around. If  first clearing my mind from the cravings, impulses and well etched routines and factors of association I will be more than ready to deal with the physical ordeals that will, presumably inevitably, follow. I romanticize this thought; it would be the final climax; the definite break up after a long and complicated relationship, and after that you're finally free.

To make it all easier for myself, I'm using nicotine patches in order to be able to focus on other things than feeding the addiction by actual action; I will learn not to think of cigarettes. That is my strategy and the hardest part. The rest will be easy.

I have now used the patches for two days and this far, the patches have been doing a pretty good job, spare for leaving red squares on my skin [and potential bi-effects that may or may not show up], so what's left is to continue to discover and disarm, are all those moments of impulses when I would normally have lit up: When waiting for the bus. When being hungry two hours before lunch time. When getting off a plane or a train, when having a beer (or a few) or when having a cup of coffee in my own kitchen. There are probably more of these moments that needs to be discovered.
- Smoking is nothing you think of; it's just something you do. It's when you don't do it that you think of it.

I don't want to think of it even when not doing it.

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First of all: What an excellent decision, and all the best of luck!

whilst others allow more failures than progress just because their decision is not thorough and they haven't managed to convince themselves of... I'm not going to use the words that it's the right decision to make because I'm not interested in telling others what's right and what's wrong.

I tend to see "not quitting" as "not making a decision" -- it's when you decide to quit, wholly and fully, that you've actually made a decision. "Deciding" to keep on smoking may *seem* like a conscious (or even rational) decision, but in actual fact it's just the addiction getting the better of you, and you finding ways to rationalize the non-decision. The same with "deciding" to start smoking again after trying to quit -- it's you relinquishing the responsibility and power over your own actions, and letting the Gríma of addiction guide them.

The only one who should be making decisions about your actions and body is you. You are in control. You are the queen of your own domain.

I tend to see "not quitting" as "not making a decision"

Well, I agree with you there, no further comment about that and as you probably understand I refer to those people who tell others that their intentions are to quit but then always find excuses for not following this so called decision. "party smokers" and so on.

The same with "deciding" to start smoking again after trying to quit

That's the first time I've even heard of that excuses as such exist. So... people "decide" to start. That's not it, it's just that they failed. Or rather, that they weren't determined enough to start with. Now I'm not going to put myself on a pedestal here: After all this is a test for how strong a will I have and that remains yet to be seen. All I know is that I need to do this, not least because I want to be, as you wrote, the queen of my own domain.

Well, those are people who *want* to make a decision, but can't. Or don't realise that if you are an addict, it's not always enough to make the decision once -- you have to make it strongly enough to keep its validity for every subsequent day, or decide to renew it every day.

Oh, yes - I knew someone once who "decided" to start smoking again because it gave him better "quality of life". *rolleyes*

That said, nicotine addiction is one of the strongest there is, and failure (if perhaps only temporary) is always in the cards. But I see a big difference in realising that failure to stay off nicotine is just that, and in deceiving yourself into thinking that going on with the smoking/snusande is in any way a rational choice.

Well, those are people who *want* to make a decision, but can't. Or don't realise that if you are an addict, it's not always enough to make the decision once -- you have to make it strongly enough to keep its validity for every subsequent day, or decide to renew it every day.

Yes, as concerning so many other things, it's about not giving up.

Oh, yes - I knew someone once who "decided" to start smoking again because it gave him better "quality of life". *rolleyes*

I'm... speachless. Dumbfounded. Come on.

That said, nicotine addiction is one of the strongest there is, and failure (if perhaps only temporary) is always in the cards. But I see a big difference in realising that failure to stay off nicotine is just that, and in deceiving yourself into thinking that going on with the smoking/snusande is in any way a rational choice.

Indeed it is. It's right up there with cocaine and heroine. Personally I don't worry about the nicotine. I'm sure I'll be able to deal with the abstinence once I've gotten rid of the actual mental habit of smoking, and for that matter wanting to inhale. I think that's what I liked about smoking: The sense of something (even if it's poisonous) filling my lungs. Then again I also like the smell of petrol and warm rubber tyres...

Yes, I've heard the "party smoker" excuse a few times. Granted, there may be people who can actually keep their smoking to only very occasional party smoking, even after having been smokers, but they are not very common. It is another thing for someone who has never been a habitual smoker to smoke on sparse occasions (though there are certainly good reasons not to), but for someone who has decided to quit a smoking habit, I don't think "party smoking" is an option. If anything, it is just going to make it all the more difficult to stay off the smoke all other days, as you then don't completely shake the habit.

I understand and agree to your point. If you quit, you quit.
I had an old colleague at the school I was working at, who gave up smoking many years ago. Nowadays she smokes a cigarette maybe once a year and that's enough for her.
Heck, I don't want to smoke at all. I'm starting to realize what hidden impact it's really had on my life. But I'll rant about that later.

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