The Decision

Smoking.

A habit that is totally mental.  A mental habit that has a physical impact which has led many people to the most undesired and lethal health effects.  I started in my late 20s and smoked off an on.  Mostly for social reasons.  However, after I moved to NYC, and as of a year ago, I started to smoke cigarettes "full time."  My reasons went beyond social.  Smoking became an outlet for stress relief.  My mind has been deceitful in to making me think that smoking would calm me down from stressful situations.  It would give me an outlet to to socialize, de-stress, and replace other bad habits in my life.  Now that I have changed scenes, I decided that I needed a change in my life.  This had to be it.

Now that I have been presented with all of the facts of cigarette ingredients, how deceitful it has played with my mind, not to mention the aftermath of what cigarette smoking has done to both my mind and body, I have decided to quit. 

COLD TURKEY

Why?

  • Smoking did not decrease stress.  It enhanced it.  A lot
  • Smoking did not slow my heart rate down and wasn't a source of relaxation.  It increased my  heart rate on so many levels and was/is/always will be an addictive stimulant.
  • That annoying cough that will not disappear.
  • Smoking has instilled into my brain that bad habits are always acceptable.
  • I realize the negative effects that it has been placing on both my body and in my mind.
  • I care about my career in aviation.
  • I realize that it's never too late to quit.
While I will never bud into other people's lives that do smoke, I will be there to support the decisions and actions of those who have decided to quit, just like I am now doing.

THE BATTLE PLAN
"D.R.O."


Now.  Cold Turkey.

I realize that each person is different and each person has or had their own way of quitting.  I am not stating that if one were to quit smoking that the only was is "cold turkey" or "my way or no way."  If you decide to quit smoking, I am here to help give you some ideas on how.  Every way to quit is the right way.  One thing to keep in mind...


TIME is the best way to quit.
It takes TIME.
Some people do it quicker than others.
Better late than never. 
 

Smoking has been such an addictive habit for me, that my mind always deceived me into thinking that each cigarette will be the last.  I always thought such statements such as:

  • "When I finish this pack, it will be my last."
  • "I will quit smoking as my New Year's Resolution next year."
  • "I will chew the nicotine gum and trim down the number of cigarettes I have."

Having worked with both children and adults on the Autism Spectrum with some pretty challenging and aggressive behaviors as an ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) trainer and therapist, I have come to take my experiences and training and use this as a way to use the "DRO" method.

What is D.R.O.?

"DRO" is a proceedure called:

"Differential Reinforcement of Other (Behavior/Habit)"

This means that we will take a Target (i.e., Negative Behavior/Habit) and replace and reinforce a more positive behavior/habit.  Thus, placing the negative habit into "extinction."  I.e., to completely rid of the target behavior/habit.

Here is how I am applying that information with my decision to quit smoking:

I take what I enjoyed most about smoking:
  • The motion of taking a lighter and lighting the cigarette.
  • The aroma which comes out of the cigarette.
  • The warm sensation of smoke being inhaled into my esophagus and the "calming" effect.
  • The sensual feeling of how my brain reacts to the feeling of holding a cigarette and the effect of nicotine towards both body and mind.



Being that I love scented candles, I have chosen that to be the more positive habit I am replacing or reinforcing over the target (negative) habit.  Every time I have the urge to smoke, I will light a scented candle of my choosing with the same lighter I use to smoke with.  I will use that time with the scented candle to practice positive breathing exercises and mediation while inhaling the aromas and fresh air surrounding me to replace the inhalation of smoke to create a brain sensation that will crave the scented candle over the cigarette.  This method covers both the physical and mental aspects of the habit to which I am trying to replace.

I will keep everyone updated on my progress..

I have some people that I wish to thank and that have been an inspiration to me towards my final decision to quit smoking for good.

Robert Keleti, my CFI.

last, and certainly, not least:
MY FAMILY.

Your support has been astronomical.

I also wish to mention a book which was given to me by my friend Karlene:

Charles Duhigg



This book has been a great resource for me in my endeavors to quit smoking.  Not only to quit smoking, but my endeavors to make life as positive and as meaningful as possible.  This book is a must read even if you do not have any habits you need to break.  

Did you know that Pepsodent was discovered by the pure and simple fact that the U.S. faced a dental epidemic, researchers were looking for a way to solve it, and that multimillion dollar company just because people needed to break the habit or lack of dental hygiene?  

Multi-billion dollar companies are based on habit.  Buy this book and find out how.


Speaking of buying books, 

Karlene's new book "Flight To Success" is now available for pre-order!  An auto-graphed copy can be pre-ordered via her website or pre-ordered on Amazon.com



It's all about finding the best possible ways to enjoy life and make it meaningful at the same time.  Have a great day, everyone!

Jeremy.





Comments

  1. Jeremy, I am so happy for you!! The power of habit is so strong, I actually change my book to accommodate a Habit chapter. We have control over our lives...you are proving this! We just have to replace bad habits with good habits. I am so happy for you!
    And thank you so much for sharing my book and your order too. I hope that it helps in this journey of creating great and positive change in your life!

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