Continuing from previous post
Quit Smoking Methods That Work
The 'Chemical Agent' is represented by a black spring. It is our nicotine addiction. Imagine this addiction as a tiny black spring developing somewhere in your head when you started smoking. It starts insignificant and weak. You feed it with every cigarette you smoke, making it grow larger and stronger.
Eventually, like the Cognitive Agent, this spring starts to exert pressure upon you. Not smoking at your regular intervals makes this black spring stretch. This creates tension and discomfort. When you light a cigarette, the spring eases and lets you feel comfortable again.
This addiction was not something you were born with, You created it when you started smoking, More importantly, you weaken it simply by not smoking. Stop smoking long enough and this agent will die off and disappear altogether.
The 'Emotions Agent' is represented by a grey spring. It characterizes our emotional attachment to smoking. For example, you might derive what seems like pleasure and a sense of completion from smoking after meals. Before going on a flight, you might feel delight buying cheap cigarettes by the carton at the duty free shop. On the other hand, the thought of not being able to smoke for extended periods, say on a long haul flight, might leave you feeling somewhat distressed.
A Powerful Agent
The Emotions Agent may seems fairly innocuous, but it's probably the most persuasive and powerful of the three agents, Some smokers who smoked their last cigarette and then told themselves "That's it – that's my last cigarette forever" have reported feeling:
"Like my best friend died"
"Like a part of myself – an arm or a leg - was being cut off and lost forever"
The smoker's natural tendency would be to attempt to stop these extremely unpleasant feelings. The easiest way to do this is by not quitting. She would therefore have a strong urge to reach for and light a cigarette. Even if a smoker managed to resist these urges when quitting, similar emotions might arise again in the future, tempting her to smoke.
For instance, she may feel envious when she sees friends lighting up outside after dinner. Or she may feel distressed at not being able to smoke under a tight deadline, especially when she sees her colleagues doing so. Quitting clearly becomes easier when one is able to effectively manage these and other similar emotions.
Quit Smoking does this in two ways. One route is via a pre-emptive blanket approach. Positive Quitters are strongly advised to go into their quit feeling excited about the whole affair. At the same time, they're to stay calm and cool during the first few days. When we maintain these emotional states, we crowd out fear, depression, irritation and other negative affective states that may accompany smoking cessation. Quitting becomes more pleasant and easier.
The second approach to manage negative emotions is by taking control of our thoughts. Our ex-smoker friend described above would feel much better if she reminded herself why her friends are smoking after dinner – because of their mistaken beliefs and because their addicted bodies crave nicotine.
Even if she had tried explaining to her friends the nature of their addiction, they probably wouldn't listen (until they're good and ready, smokers are generally content to remain misguided and addicted). Our friend would naturally feel sorry for them instead of feeling jealous and bitter. She'd likely feel glad she's stopped smoking.
THE MODEL EXPLAINS OLDER QUIT METHODS
The smoker attempts to simply stop smoking for good. This approach can be difficult because the person's thoughts, feelings and nicotine addiction all act to get him to light a cigarette! If he stays off cigarettes, his nicotine addiction progressively goes away.
However, the residual Cognitive and Emotions Agents may still push the ex-smoker to smoke. This leaves him at risk. If these misguided thoughts and feelings about smoking are not resolved, they may tempt the ex-smoker, who quit smoking months or years ago, to suddenly start again.
Cutting down (tapering) involves gradually reducing the number of cigarettes you smoke each day, until you eventually do not need any. The problem here is that the smoker is still consuming nicotine which
continues to reinforce his physical craving. The Cognitive and Emotions Agents also remain.
Delaying nicotine gratification increases the appetite for cigarettes. This makes smoking even more rewarding. Instead of becoming less desirable, cutting down increases the craving for cigarettes.
Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT)
The smoker uses a nicotine patch, inhaler, nasal spray or gum to help wean her off cigarettes. The Quit Smoking model predicts the following problems with NRT:
- The Cognitive and Emotions Agents are not treated or managed. These may trigger urges to smoke in the near or distant future.
- The smoker is still consuming nicotine. Thus, she continues to feed her addiction. What she is doing is shifting her nicotine dependency from the cigarette to the NRT device.
- Quitting with NRT products may reinforce the Cognitive Agent: If a smoker comes to rely upon NRT to minimise urges to smoke, she may conclude she'll need NRT each time she has the urge to smoke. As long as she thinks this, she'll be unsure she will be able to stay off NRT or cigarettes. This leaves her susceptible to smoking again: "I needed patches to quit., l feel like smoking now but don't have a patch with me! What do I do?"
The Positively Quit position is that most smokers have misguided benefits and feelings about smoking. It is these wrong beliefs and emotions – rather than a nicotine addiction – that make staying off cigarettes especially difficult,
In a nutshell, Positively Quit works to:
- help smokers dispel myths and change their attitudes towards smoking;
- help smokers manage their emotions;
- arm the quitter with tools to prevent relapses.
The only issue left is the nicotine addiction. The Positive Quitter resolves this simply by not smoking. Only when he's stopped for good and has corrected his misguided thoughts and feelings about smoking, will his smoking problems be fully resolved.
Consider the best method of all. Though it still supply nicotine to the smoker, the smoker can opt to lower his nicotine intake till he eventually hit zero nicotine. It is painless, healthy and able to keep smoker's from going back to cigarettes.
If you are interested to know more electronic cigarette, you can follow the link – Best Electronic Cigarette and see the wonders yourself.
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