Stress Can Be Managed, but Smoking Can Be Deadly
In these tumultous times we tend to "stress out" more. Reaching for a cigarette, as I did for thirty years, isn't a really good idea. Nicotine - as we all know - is excruciatingly addictive and what's more, it's at first a stimulant but soon becomes a depressant.
Stress is part of life and not always bad; cigarettes need not be a part of life and are always bad.
Take a deep breath. Take a brisk walk. Call a trusted friend. Distance yourself from replaying distorted crap over and over in your head.
Tell yourself you're doing the best you can and chip away at a challenge, bit by bit. Take breaks. Put some humor in your life. Rent a hilarious DVD. Sing a nonsense song in the shower. Climb some stairs. Be with a beloved canine or feline companion. Even a chirping bird or gerbil can take you to a sweeter, calmer place.
Cigarettes don't compliment this picture. Avoid them like the plague.
Create a chart. Take notes.
Daily you write your goals, thoughts, feelings, or whatever the hell you want to say to yourself re: staying off smokes.
You could seek out a support group of other folks who're also eschewing nicotine. Muscle relaxation, relaxing groups of muscles one group at a time, can be helpful. Meditation whilst focusing on one word or object can reduce your tension. Just don't smoke.
Credit yourself for not smoking and as you continue to stay off cigarettes, log these days, weeks, months. You can feel a psychological punch to your gut, an acidic adrenaline rush and still celebrate your smoke-free you. So what if you can't always avoid toxic people and stressful circumstances; you've got clean fingers, white teeth, pink lungs, and a potentially longer life and, what's more, you're smack-dab in the middle of it! Isn't this great?
I love the fact that my life is smoke-free and has been so for many years. Stress comes and goes; I manage it pretty well sometimes and other times not so good. Stress can sneak up on you. Stress can grab you suddenly with an unexpected bill or phone call out of the blue. Again, nicotine only exacerbates our trials and tribulations. Tobacco causes ills, it does not cure them.
Did you ever explore volunteerism? Give it a try.
Have you checked out the calendar section of your newspaper? There's lots of stuff to do in life besides smoking cigarettes. What ever happened to yoga? Surprise! It's still here! Why not give it a try? Think about bicycling. I'll bet there's a bike shop near you and yes, there are used bikes available too. Bicycling groups of regular folk? Yes there are! Walking groups? Yes, indeed! I'm getting revved up just thinking about it and, as we now know via the relatively new brain-change science, we can alter our thoughts and feelings and therefore change our brains, so to speak; we can influence the growth of neurons. We can successfully manage our stress and life is sooo exhilarating without cigarettes. Give it a try!
Visit me at Quitnicotinenow.net. I look forward to being with you again next week.