3 votes

As for me, I'm quitting smoking. Any other New Year resolutions?

Mea culpa: For the past two years, I've been struggling with a nicotine addiction, something I recently shared with legalizeliberty via email.

I was a heavy-duty smoker starting in 1990, when I picked up the habit in Japan. I smoked for twelve years, until 2002, when I finally decided to put it away for good.

I was quit for six years, until August 2008, when I picked up the habit again at the RNC. Uggh. That was a very stressful period, and a lot of the people I was hanging out with were smoking. It was kind of a perfect storm, and I fell back into my old groove with ease and smoked for the several days in Minneapolis.

When I got back home, I quit...

But then, falling under the mistaken belief that I could smoke and quit at will, and seduced by the intoxicating pull of the nicotine hit, I began to cheat. At first it wasn't often -- usually only if I had a beer (or three), or felt overly stressed. I was smoking American Spirit Ultra Lights, which, if you're a hard core smoker, are a little like smoking tissue paper. They're like nothing. But after all my years of not smoking, they were plenty powerful enough for me.

{Intersting aside: Somewhere in the last two years, a law was changed, and cigarettes are now no longer classified as 'lights' or 'ultra lights.' Apparently the government doesn't want anyone to get the idea that certain types of cigs are more 'healthy' than others. So now the former American Spirit Ultra Lights (which used to come in a yellow box) are now simply "The Orange Box." The former Camel Lights (which I used to smoke) have become "Camel Blue." Weird.

Further, the old packaging used to display the amount of tar/nicotine contained in each cigarette. They don't do that anymore, so in fact consumers have less information than before the law was changed.}

Well, its a slippery slope, and before I knew it I was riding the dark spiral, which I've been riding for the last couple of years: Smoke for a week until I felt sick; chew nicotine gum until the box ran out; quit for as long as I could, then break down and buy a pack of smokes and start the cycle over again. Pathetic.

For a while I didn't think it was that big a deal, and for a while it wasn't. But you can only lie to yourself for so long. I realized it was getting to be a problem from the ridiculous lengths I was going through to hide my habit from my wife! (She has a very sensitive nose.) I started to feel how depressed cigarettes made me feel. It was powerful, terrible, and frankly scary. Scientists can argue about it, but I could feel the causality of it clearly.

And other things. I just kind of felt sick of myself for my lack of control. Increasingly, that feeling moved from the background to the foreground.

So, the long and short of it is, I made the decision to quit smoking. It is no small task, really, as it is an entire change of mindset. However, I had my last cigarette on 12/13/10 - the night of the Boston Tea Party. In fact, I gave my last cigarette to Bob Dwyer, who promptly ripped the filter off and stuck it in his mouth!

Adam Kokesh also shared something interesting at the BTP, about the 'legal drugs' which are allowed in this country: nicotine, caffeine & alcohol.

Nicotine is a drug of slavery. People who smoke are slaves to their habit (I certainly was). Caffeine keeps you working hard and productive. And alcohol - well, that is for helping you forget how much you're getting screwed by the government! It is quite a clever analysis. But the punchline was, "Enough talk about drugs; now I'd like to talk about marijuana." Ha ha ha.

Of course it is illegal, since it doesn't fit into the slave / work hard / obliterate your mind model.

legalizeliberty has also made the decision to quit drinking, something I encourage very much.

So if anyone has any resolutions they'd like to share, please share them here. I'm not moralizing here - just trying to encourage anyone to act on something (or begin to think about acting) if you want to make a change in your life. I'm confident that the DP community will wholeheartedly support anyone who wants to improve themselves and be the best that they can be.

Of course real change only comes from the inside. Changes in external behaviors are nearly impossible to force, but come easy once the decision is made inside, and relapse is difficult when a solid, powerful reason has been made and accepted as your new reality.

For me, I realized that I couldn't possibly hope to control anything greater if I couldn't control a simple nicotine urge, and I don't want that to be my life. I don't want the waste of money, of my health, and my self respect.

So be it resolved! That I will not smoke any (tobacco :) cigarettes, or use any nicotine products in the year of our Lord, two thousand ought and eleven!

17 days and counting so far. Please let us know if there are any changes you are contemplating as the new year rolls in.

Thoughts are things, and with our thoughts we can support each other, distance be damned!

Thank you all for your support!

Michael



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Hi Ruth I Remember Reading Recently...

about a relationship between Aspartame and Lupis. If I remember right aspartame poisoning can cause the exact symptoms. It is really difficult nowadays to keep it out of our diets because labeling it by name is no longer required.

http://www.uklupus.co.uk/aspart.html

http://www.mpwhi.com/main.htm

Thank you,

but I hate diet soda, and diet anything else, and I eat cleanly and I read labels carefully, and I've avoided aspartame like the plague since the early eighties when Donald Rumsfeld was the CEO of Searle and used his connections to get it approved by the FDA for general use.

Don't get me wrong, I appreciate your concern, and I wish it could be that simple, and for most people your suggestion would be a good one, but I don't think it applies to me. Still, thanks for your suggestion.

You Are Welcome...

It doesn't have to be diet anything. There is no complete list anywhere on the net of products it's in but it is in virtually everything now from yoghurt to chewing gum,baby formula, most prescription drugs...over 9000 products....if it says "natural" or "artificial flavoring" it is probably Aspartame....

Ruth

I am the "religious type", and will pray for you. I do not know much about your disease, but you have a strength about you that will help you beat this horrible thing. You will be in my prayers.

Thank you!

I LOVE it when people let me know I'm in their prayers! I'm not even a religious or a spiritual person myself, but please don't underestimate what a sincere request to God can do!

Thanks for posting Michael!

I have just recently started smoking again after quitting 2 years ago. We made a decision to move from Washington state (where we had many Ron Paul friends), to take a job in Louisville, KY, mostly for the purpose of allowing our 12 year old son to be closer to family (who think that we are nuts). One of the biggest mistakes that we have ever made! Needless to say, it only took a few months before I began smoking again. Hopefully I will find the strength to quit again sometime soon. Thanks for planting the seed in my mind regardless.

-Rebecca

Hey Mike, I quit smoking in the late 1990s.

I've also experienced the "backsliding". Its nothing to worry about. I never actually made a formal commitment to quit.

People talk about "will power", but I think its more a question of "want power". If your desire not to smoke is greater than your desire to smoke, you'll be free of it.

I don't have any resolutions as such this year, but my ex and I have decided to attempt a reconcilliation.

I'm on the move again!

Good move...

..."my ex and I have decided to attempt a reconcilliation"

good luck

Love Liberty Peace!

LL on Twitter: http://twitter.com/LibertyPoet
sometimes LL can suck & sometimes LL rocks!
http://www.dailypaul.com/203008/south-carolina-battle-of-cow...
Love won! Deliverance from Tyranny is on the way! Col. 2:13-15

Thanks.

We've talked on the phone almost every day since we split.

We stayed friends and were able to be 100% candid with each other.

Its been a difficult time for us both, but I think it was just what we needed to learn and grow.

I'll stay with her for a week. If that goes well, I'll move back in with her. Right now, we don't have alot to lose by trying!

My New Year's Resolution...

is not to make a New Year's Resolution. Oops!

Drain the swamp!

e-cigs worked for me

e-cigs worked for me, I didn't even try to quit, I bought a good kit on a lark 3 months ago and that was about it for corporate ciggys, they just went away. I no longer pay the government to smoke.

If you decide to try this, DO NOT buy from the mall vendors, they are rip-offs, do some solid online research and buy a quality kit.

look for online forums about "vaping" or "ecigs".

ohhh, and I was 2 1/2 pack a day smoker for 20+ years..

I'm Not Saying smoking is good for you

But I enjoy it. There is only one form of cancer that has been directly identified as causing a cancer. The percentage that develop that form of cancer is very low and what about the number of people who get lung cancer who never smoked. I remember this 95 year old guy who sat out in front of the nursing home my mother was in. He said he smoked two packs of non-filtered cigs. all his life.

And I don't like "them" telling me what to do.

nicotine is actually good for you

Nicotine is actually good for you but the anti-tobacco lobby has so demonized it that you'll have to dig pretty hard to get the truth. Nicotine is not carcinogenic, it is the tars and additives that corporate ciggy criminals put into tobacco that deliver carcinogens. Actually most corporate ciggys aren't even tobacco, they are a wierd brew of re-constituted tobacco (sheet they call it) and a bunch of other nasties.

If you must smoke, try an MYO setup, get some organic tobacco, tubes and an injector...then you'll know what tobacco is supposed to taste like.

oh...and if you buy in bulk, you'll like the price, 80 cents a pack. You'll also be starving the monkees, no more tax for them.

Michael Nystrom's picture

I enjoy smoking, too!

Honestly, I'd have to say that I love it!

The physical act; the rush of the drug, especially as it combines with other favored drugs, like caffeine & alcohol; watching the smoke curl about from the tip of the burning ember; watching the big cloud of smoke as I expel it from my lungs; smoke rings; the break from work as I go outside, and the jolt of increased brain activity; the little companion when I've got a few idle moments on my hands. Yes, all of these things I enjoy.

However, over time, I began to see the health effects, and I'm not talking about cancer. I'm talking about the gradual loss of energy, the tiredness, the coughs, the increased susceptibility to colds, and just the feeling of poison in my body. These were the everyday health effects that I increasingly observed in myself.

There was a point in my life when these costs were so negligible that I did not notice them, and I perceived smoking as enhancing my life: When I was 22, living in Japan, staying out late drinking in bars with friends, cigarettes were a beautiful part of that lifestyle.

But that was 20 years ago, and at some point along the way, that cost/benefit measure flipped for me.

It is the increasing costs as I get older and more observant that I most definitely do not enjoy, and I most definitely don't enjoy being slave to both a habit and a physical addiction. These impose additional costs of their own.

But nobody is telling you what to do, lest of all me!

He's the man.

Just decided to quit, again

I'm going to give my e-cigs a full attempt this time. I think it's the closest I'll get to being a non smoker anyway. I like smoking. I hate the morning cough, I hate the slight panic I feel when there might be a snowstorm or some other reason I can't get to the store to buy more. I hate making up reasons to leave events or friend's houses cuz I want to go smoke. I hate washing dirty ashtrays, yuk.
So I'm going to pick a date this month. Anyone want to quit with me?
Michael,btw, you quit on my birthday!
Congratulations.

Colchester, New London County, Connecticut

Michael Nystrom's picture

I'm with you

I hate making up reasons to leave events or friend's houses cuz I want to go smoke.

I always hated that, too.

I also hated the fact that I would stink after a smoke; smokers don't realize it, but non-smokers can smell a smoker a mile away.

When you pick your quit day, please post it. See if anyone else would join. It would thrill me to no end.

Happy birthday, thank you and good luck. Keep me posted!

He's the man.

If the energy is right...

all things are possible. I battle with bad habits on a daily basis. I know what I need to do, to keep my mind and body feeling it's absolute best, being high on life, so to speak, but that's not always possible. Life gets in the way. Tragedy can be a huge distraction, making it a constant struggle to stay on track. Not in the least bit easy, but well worth it. Keeping your body as healthy and pure as possible, is the only way to totally integrate body, mind and soul.

.

First off: The only reason I am going to post this private personal perspective experience of mine publicly & unasked is because it is you Michael - I for a fact know without knowing that you have at least somewhere put yourself on the line enough to easily warrant me doing the same. Tit for tat is how I naturally output and I would like to help you in your resolution if possible.

~~~ Quitting smoking ~~~

For me, looking back, I started smoking in my teens because by society's standards, it was something I wasn't supposed to do and I was rebellious. I saw many grown adults doing this and I was of course invincible, able to do it all and then some. I should state here that I am actually glad I smoked and don't regret this learning lesson now for one second. This is also because I know I've completely stopped before it became detrimental to me so I'm lucky.

The #1 key to quitting is you have to truly want to. That may sound general and perhaps overly simple & easy but I mean it. Deep down somehere where blood meets bone, YOU have to really want it. This is a real addiction but as I always say, where there is a will there is a way. It is all going to depend on how strong your will is going to be at it's weakest point.

Overall, I personally "quit" countless times. Out of those many attempts, there were two main instances.
The first was for 2-3 years because my girlfriend at the time really loved me. She never demanded I quit nor ever gave me an ultimatum but I knew it made her very sad and disappointed. Thus I ended up wanting to quit bad enough to please her that in this instance, along with her awesome help, it was very easy for me do. Any withdraws paled in comparison to passion.

After my gf and I broke up I continued not to smoke. I just no longer thought about it and luckily it worked out that way then. Nevertheless that changed too. I had an experience and another cigarette towards my last month of military training. This did not start me up full steam; I only started back up again socially (maybe 3 times that month?). That is, until I got to my first unit. There at my first unit, it benefited immensely for multiple reasons to smoke and so I started back up on a regular & steady basis.

After a few years, I wanted to quit and knew eventually somewhere down the line I would need to. This time was much more difficult though as my only real need to quit then was that I told myself I should. I failed in this many times. I used to joke that quitting was for losers and always managed to find some rationale to excuse myself into starting back up. There was no outside/inside overwhelming force for me to do this like I had so easily done before. Once I realized how many times I had attempted and failed and compared that with how easily I quit previously for years, I knew I needed some kind of outside assistance or wait until smoking became personally detrimental. This is fortunately or unfortunately how I work.

I'm not the type to ask for outside help easily and yet I knew I should really do something. For me, I decided to try the patch. I'm not even attempting to tell you here without doubt that this is the best individual method that will personally work for you to quit. Each individual is obviously different. Rather my point here is that for me, I knew when I got the patch that I was making a strong conscious statement with this action and that I was going to do this for me simply because I wanted to. Looking back it was the combination of these two things (firmly wanting to and outside help) that made it actually a very simple process to personally complete once the process was so securely founded. Those two things being established created a bottom line for me to quit and not crack. How one is to realize & obtain these two things themselves only they can conclude. This is though, in my opinion, the main underlying combination needed to create a working principle to destroy any real addiction.

So now that the bottom line has been established, here are a few other tips and personal opinions that at least helped me build up to the complete overhaul of smoking:

- "The easiest way to quit a bad habit is to replace it with another."
This statement has a good amount of truth to it. In my case I took a darker approach to this (yet still applied it) and the new habits were the patch and putting on pause a few of the social events that I did.

- "Do not drink during this process."
In fact, if you are a regular drinker or this statement makes anyone say, "HA! no way!" then work on cutting drinking back first. Smoking and drinking obv go hand in hand.
I wouldn't even bother attempting to quit smoking until my drinking alcohol was moderated down to a level of easy self control. I would then apply this self control by continually pushing this strategy of no drinks upon myself until I knew for certain I was done with smoking. Then and only then I would have just one drink that night to test this theory and continue from there. Yes alcohol can make this process that slippery.

- "Cease counting the days."
This is the last of my advice but not even the least. Work on not even thinking about how many days it's been. Whenever you start to count the days stop yourself and say instead what's done is done.
Unlike other attempts, in both of my main instances I never counted the days. This imo is very important because if you are always consciously aware of exactly how long it's been then in this manner it can easily become indrectly stressful or burdensome and you are more likely to fail.
For instance, envision yourself at the conclusion of this path; in the future when and where you know for fact that you no longer smoke. Are you going to be wasting any thought on counting the days? No. You will have forgotten all about it unless something externally somehow brings it up. =]

Some people say quitting smoking is the hardest thing they've ever done. It is a real pain in the ass to say the least but once done completely it will boost your self-confidence knowing you beat the snot out of one of the real beasts out there.

gl sir and Happy New Year~

Michael Nystrom's picture

Thank you sir

Your story is instructive and important.

Funny that you should bring it up, but I feel the same as you: "I'm actually glad I smoked, and don't regret learning this lesson for a second."

It is true. Smoking has provided me with much pleasure, and quitting smoking has provided me with many lessons. One of the lessons I learned is compassion, for others with a habit that they cannot control. Having been there, I understand.

Smoking has been my teacher.

Another important point is how many tries it may take to fully and truly quit, and the lies we tell ourselves in the mean time, e.g. I used to joke that quitting was for losers and always managed to find some rationale to excuse myself into starting back up.

I started smoking in Japan where I lived for two years after I got out of college. My rational for most of the time I smoked was, "I'm not really a smoker." Ha!

In Japan, I told myself, I'll just smoke while I'm in Japan.

In the end, my real reason was that I was getting to the point where I thought I should start thinking about marriage, and I knew that I didn't 1) want a wife who was a smoker, and furthermore, I didn't 2) want a wife who would tolerate smoking in me! LOL!

So I made an effort, to quit, for my future, unknown wife (there was no one in my life at the time.)

There is one point that, from my perspective, that I will do differently this time: I WILL count the days.

Many ex-smokers remember their quit date, but my 2002 quit date, I had forgotten. Like you I put it out of my mind - thought I was done with it all.

in the future when and where you know for fact that you no longer smoke.

What this time around taught me (ah, Smoking, still my teacher), is that the temptation will always remain. That day that you speak of will never come, at least not for me. I could fall back into that groove as easy as I could hop on a bicycle and start riding into the sunset.

If I had been conscious of the number of days - say I had been aware that it was 2,243 days since my last cigarette - I think I'd be more careful not to break the streak.

Let's see, now I'm at 20 days. Even that is enough to make me not want to have to start over again.

Thank you and best of luck to you.

He's the man.

good stuff =D

with the counting the days thing - I totally understand where you're coming from and I agree completely that could work for alot of people. I would like to point out though that I didn't mean counting the days to so much equal, "out of sight out of mind" as that is likely an impossibility.
What I more so meant to mean is as soon as you do start to wonder how long it has been, right then and there I would make a conscious decision to say internally, "It doesn't matter how long it's been because it has already been finalized"

This is imo more squashing and defeating it as soon as it does come into your mind rather than casting it out.
The impulse or thought is going to definitely come back but as you continue to do this the 'requests for audience' will dwindle

Of course there is more than one way to skin a cat and if reminding yourself how long you have stayed firm gives you the strength or confidence needed then by all means use it. I just brought this preference up because this was the mentality that worked well for me. Because of me in the past constantly rationalizing myself back into, I would squash any smoking impulses or thoughts - not even giving smoking the slightest chance for that 'audience' if u will

"That day that you speak of will never come, at least not for me."

never say never my friend
where there is a will there is a way and life/fate or whatever label u want to use can be quite funny at times and all that is required for this particular day I spoke of to come is enough confidence to know

good luck to u2 sir
=P

I will be giving up airline travel until TSA is gone!

When I tried to pass thru the security check point at the Phoenix airport after a holiday visit to my daughter I was subjected to the naked scanner and my scan did not pass the review! I was publicly humiliated! Then I was taken to the screened off area and in front of my grandaughter was given the new enhanced pat down procedure. I was so humiliated and furious! I now realize this will happen to me each and every time I fly in the future. When I returned home I found a note in my baggage that the TSA had also gone through all of my luggage. I feel so violated! I wont do it again.

Whatever you do Michael...

keep on tryin'. It took me five times but, I finally beat it. Yeah, I know we always think we can have one or two once in a while. But, don't work that way.

Don't give in.

MacLib

We will be praying for you!

My parents both quit smoking and felt far better once they did. They weren't a pack a day smokers, either of them. Dad found a black sore in his mouth that struck fear into him. That prompted both of them to quit, making time in the car much more pleasent for all of us. :)

My resolutions?
Cook more, snack less
shop in a more healthy manner than I already do
Lose 15 pounds

and now for the real toughies:
watch my mouth when around the kids. (They know enough about travesty that is perceived as freedom now to be asking serious questions.) --I don't want to scare them, but do want to honestly answer questions.

Be more understanding and supportive of my husband!! (Sometimes I get very frustrated with what I perceive as a lack of initiative, when it should be seen as careful planning on his part.)

Encourage My Husband to e-mail You, Michael, and get this running! :)

Watch for ways to show consideration of others.

Live as a person who is free, both physically and spiritually.

"Hence, naturally enough, my symbol for Hell is something like the bureaucracy of a police state or the office of a thoroughly nasty business concern." ~~C.S. Lewis
Love won! Deliverance from Tyranny is on the way! Col. 2:13-15

Keep it up

people fight the craving. Kick it!

try E- cigarettes

they worked for me.

I bought e-cigs (blu)

Bought them back in the spring. Stil smoking the real ones, can't get used to it. I should quit, have to quit really. Our insurance went up $900 last year because I smoked, and it will go higher this year if I continue. I just don't want to. That's the problem. I like smoking. How am I supposed to quit something I enjoy?
I quit several times in the past (pregnancies and other reasons) and always went back. Hypnotism, patches, cold turkey, everything. I always go back. BUT my new reason was apparent on xmas. My dad spent the day bent over using a nebulizer. He has one lung and continues to smoke like a chimney, won't even go outside for fresh air, won't exercise. Watching that, watching him unable to walk to the bathroom and back easily because of smoking, that will be my reaosn to try again. And this time I'll try the e-cigs, I'll make it work. Nicotine is not that bad for you, it's the additives, chemicals.
Other resolutions: lighten up on the wine, watch my language, lose 8 lbs, double my food stash, triple my silver stash, if I can do those things I will
Love More, Worry Less, Do More.

Colchester, New London County, Connecticut

woww aphi you sure have lived a hard life for 13 hee hee.

But seriously although I have been a moderate 1-2 packs a week off and on for 20 years. I have to admit Ive gone the longest without , with eciggs,One pack in the past 6 months . I really dont miss smoking . What really scared me was I was getting chest pains everytime I lit up , but e-ciggs are great I get the full sensation of smoking {I even smoke menthols which is what I really enjoy}.The only real problem Ive had with them is losing them under the couch or other places. I would suggest you keep a couple around incase you lose one or buy them at a local store so you can immediatly purchase another one.My suggestion in one called n-joy 30 dollars for a starter kit.I get mine at pilot truck stop. Good luck Aphrodite.

Thanks to "health care

Thanks to "health care reform" even us healthy folks are getting stung by outrageously rising costs... and they all blame the law, believe me I asked.

Michael Nystrom's picture

You have the key

The key is that you have to have a good enough reason to quit.

You were able to quit when you were pregnant because you had a good enough reason.

I think one thing that is common - what I've seen on this thread - is that it takes many tries to finally succeed. I can't count how many times I tried to quit before I succeeded, but it was probably in the range of 15 - 30 times!

The patch - yes. Hypnotism - yes. Tried them all. The mass hypnosis actually worked for about 3 weeks for me. I never tried e-cigs, but nicotine gum has been very effective. Nicotine is not a carcinogen, as far as I understand, but I still felt like a slave; a little out of control; panicky if I didn't have the gum.

I'm so sorry to hear about your father's condition, but that should give you a good reason. You're looking into your own future, should you choose it.

Thank you for sharing with us. I wish you the best of luck! Love more, worry less - I'm with you on that. I'm not sure about the do more for me, lol. Can I get a couple more hours in the day?

Happy new year!

He's the man.

Aphrodite.... I put this suggestion down below for Mike..but you

may want to check it out too...

There is no need to suffer in your quest to stop smoking.

See this link here for a simple and powerful way to end the nicotine addiction. Since it is a drug, you need to both end the immediate effects of the addictive qualities of it ,and then do a nice lung/detox cleanse to purge the long term effects of it as well.(don't start that or do that until you have stopped completely though, as it will be a lot easier to handle)

http://www.boironusa.com/products/symptoms/symptom-tobacco-c...

If your not familiar with homeopathic s, please feel free to research them. THEY WORK!! (some people seem to notice more of an immediate effect than others.)
And they are also very inexpensive. (like 5-15.00 usually)

Anyway using this should take the pain out of your decision!!

Hope this helps!!
Happy New Year!

PS the lung detox should be an herbal one, there are many out there, that work well.