SDMB Smoke-Free Club, October 2008

I posted a feeler thread on this a few weeks ago, and while the response was not overwhelming, there were a few people who expressed an interest in mentoring those of us still hooked on the demon weed. Hopefully this idea will fly, and some of us will have the courage and will to kick butts.

I’m in a class/support group right now, but my confidence in it is low. I’m smoking more than ever, but I’ve made a decision to have my last cancer stick Sunday night. I think I’ll try the patch, but an enormous amount of willpower will be needed.

Any tips on dealing with cravings?

Chewing on drinking straws helped me. Drink a lot of water. Get up and do something else. Sugar-free gum or candy. I’ll stress the sugar-free! Soon your taste buds will wake up and everything will taste soooo good!
Good luck!

ETA: The fear of quitting is worse than the cravings, IMO.

I’m on the patch right now. I’m on the 14 mg ones, down from the 21 mg. Or is it grams? Anyway. I half-hearted started my quit in mid-September, slapping on the patch. However, since then I’ve made the mistake of buying cigarettes twice. The good news is that my smoking was cut way, way, way down and some of the habits of smoking were stopped: smoking after every meal, in the car, on breaks at work, before bed, any time the dog went out, etc. The bad news is that buying those two packages of cigarettes only delayed the actual, real, I’m quitting time.

I’m quitting.

To be honest, I can’t remember my last cigarette. I think it was Monday morning, when I finally smoked the last of them–with some relief, believe it or not. By then, they tasted like crap–the pack had been left out in the rain in the back yard, where I’d been sneaking out for the occasional half-smoke.

Don’t do that. Once you’ve made the decision, don’t buy any more cigarettes.

The final straw for me was an appointment to assess me for dental surgery (that !@#$%^& broken tooth thanks to Pizza Hut). I had to answer if I was a smoker and how much on the new patient questionnaire, and the information/consent sheet I had to sign advised that results of surgery were basically not guaranteed in those with certain preconditions, compromised immune systems–and smokers.

I asked for a copy of the sheet for myself. I wanted to look at that again. This surgery will cost me over $1000 (I’ve used up all my insured coverage for this year) and it’s not even guaranteed to be successful, due to being a smoker.

So I decided to quit, right after that appointment. I put on the first patch that evening, as I had to drive back to the office after my appointment. I had patches at home already due to another half-hearted attempt a bit ago, when I had my wisdom teeth removed.

Huh, smoking and my teeth. Anyway.

tdn, you are not alone. I’m here, too. The patch is really helping deal with the cravings. They’re NOTHING like I had when I quit cold turkey a few years ago. (And like I said, NEVER, EVER buy another pack of cigarettes, or you WILL BE a smoker again. That’s what happened to me. Argh.)

Cravings: deep breaths, glass of water, hard candy, brush your teeth. Walk around the block, play your favourite song and sing along. Jump into the shower, clean out a drawer, promise yourself you can have a cigarette in 30 minutes. (But don’t have it!!!)

The cravings pass in 10 minutes or less, *whether you have that cigarette or not. *

Okay, I could write a bunch more here but I have to get dressed and slap my makeup on. Early a.m. meeting at the office, so I have to leave early.

I’ve got my patch on, and I’ve been so busy posting that I forgot to miss my post-breakfast cigarette. :slight_smile:

I quit summer of 2005, and while I occasionally have a social smoke when I’m out drinking, I still consider myself a non-smoker.

Why set a quit date? Why give yourself something to look forward to/dread? Just quit now. That last ceremonial smoke is not nearly as satisfying as you think it will be, and postponing it, or giving yourself something to build up to will not help you one bit.

Just toss the pack you have now and don’t buy another one. It’s really that simple. If you don’t have them around, you can’t smoke them.

Find something to use as replacement for when the cravings hit - because they will. For me it was a combination of drinking tons of water, chewing gum, and eating sunflower seeds in their shell. The sunflower seeds were particularly effective, because of the oral fixation and distraction they offer, if a bit messy (just not always appropriate in all settings, hence the gum).

Also, allow yourself to fail. It’s ok if you give in and bum a smoke from someone. Just quit again right after that. It doesn’t mean you failed and ruined your quit and have to start from scratch again. It just means you had a hiccup. So do it, get over it, and don’t do it again.

You’ve really got to start thinking of yourself as a non-smoker. That’s the biggest issue - the perceptual shift.

Check out for a lot of good resources, and a great community of people that can help motivate you to stay quit.

Good luck!

Monday is my 29th birthday, so my boyfriend and I and two other friends are quitting the day after, we figured it would be easier if we all quit together. I can go for days without smoking, but when I’m drinking I smoke like a chimney. Problem is, none of us are married or have families, and for social activities, it pretty much revolves around meeting up at a bar somewhere and drinking. To be honest, I’m scared of quitting, because I feel like I won’t want to go out as much, thus making my social life less fun, thus making me sad… ugh. I’ve really upped my running lately, maybe I’ll turn into one of those exercise nuts. How do you handle the first time out drinking without a cigarette? It sickens me that I don’t even know how. Time to quit. Everyone has my support.

This is a huge thing for me. Smoking is a very strong part of my identity. A life without cigs is something that I can’t really even imagine. And giving them up seems like giving up part of my self. Sounds crazy, but there it is.

What’s your motivation for this? You’ve got to get your head in the right place or this won’t ever work. If you’re doing it because you think you should or because other people have asked you to - no dice. Nothing anyone can say will help you.

Until you’re doing this because you want to, because you’re tired of feeling like crap and smelling even worse, tired of being a slave to your smoke breaks, tired of spending untold sums of money pursuing a stupid habit - until you really feel that, I can tell you flat out you won’t be able to quit.

I used StayQuit from the internet - I didn’t want to smoke when drinking until I was waiting for a friend and I caved in and had one - more of a nerves thing. I bought a pack and threw them in a bin on the way home. Then I though I could have just one spliff and within two weeks I was back to square one. I’ve idenified some danger spots from this and will start the StayQuit thing again soon. I’d say if you’re out socialising and crave a fag you’ll just have to get up and leave - that’s what I should have done - it’s not going to go on forever.

Tip: Clove oil - dab it on your finger and touch the back of your throat. It seems to compensate for that harsh feeling that cigarette smoke gives you - you know, horrible but you want it.

How’s everyone doing? I’m making it through Saturday pretty well. Saturday’s are–used to be–my smoke-a-lot day. I’m home alone, not at the office, free to smoke, and my husband isn’t usually home until after 7 p.m. I could even–gasp–smoke in the house sometimes in the mornings, as I had time to open all the windows for a few hours.

Well, instead of smoking, I’m reading the Alan Carr book. Trying to reprogram the ol’ brain. It seems to be helping.

I think Carr would agree with this.

Anyone else find the book helpful?

You can read the Alan Carr book while you’re still smoking–in fact, he encourages you to keep smoking until you’ve finished it.

I happened to read it a couple of months after I quit - I think it’s very helpful. So helpful, in fact, that I bought his stop-drinking book too. Now if some other people in my house would read them …

Halloween will be my one-years-quit date. Woo Hoo!!

tdn: on the cravings - I very rarely got them, but when I did I would just sort of look at myself askance and say Oh Rly! I kind of made fun of myself for wanting a smoke, if that makes sense.

The advice upthread is correct - it passes in a few minutes.

One month, one week, one day, 3 hours, 20 minutes and 51 seconds. 782 cigarettes not smoked, saving $313.11. Life saved: 2 days, 17 hours, 10 minutes.

I got a little meter going. It has been great. I am really getting the hang of it a this point.

I encourage cold turkey and reading everything you can at

Congrats to all you quitters!

I’ve been smoke free since July 4th, 2002. My “Smober Meter” reads:

Smober Time: 6 Years, 3 Months, 9 Hours, 49 Minutes
Amount Saved: $5,699.57
Cigarettes not smoked: 34,266
Life Saved: 16 Weeks, 6 Days, 23 Hours, 30 Minutes

There are 2 things that got me through; carrying around a bottle of water with a “sport top”, so that I would have something to lift to my mouth and suck on in place of a cigarette, and remembering to deep breathe.

It’s actually a myth that smoking relaxes you and eases stress. It couldn’t possibly – cigarettes are filled with stimulants! The real stress relieving part of smoking is taking long, deep breaths, and holding them for several seconds, then slowing blowing out. Do the same thing without the cigarette and you will feel the same calming results! If you have to, put your fingers up to your mouth as if there were a cigarette in them and pretend to smoke while you take a few deep breaths. You will soon come to realize that it was never the cigarettes!

To this day, sometimes I still have to remind myself to do this. Not because I actually crave a cigarette, but because I’m in a stressful situation where, in the past, I would’ve wanted a cigarette to “relax”, so I take a few deep breaths as I would’ve done with a cigarette, and immediately feel the same calming effects.


You’ll like the sweet smell of the fresh air better than the rancid stink of cancer weed anyway.

Good luck to everyone!!!

Well, the girl at work who “quit” three days before I did said she had four (!) cigarettes last night, and then this afternoon was upset about something, and came back into the office smelling like a cigarette.* :frowning:

I’m hooked on candy and the patches. :frowning: I am working out, started last week, as a counter-measure against increased snacking and candy consumption. Too bad it’s getting into this time of year, though, as it’s not too inviting to take the dog out for long, healthy walks when it’s dark, cold and pouring rain. And for some reason, the dog doesn’t want to go for walks when it’s dark, cold and pouring rain…

*And boy, could I ever smell it on her. Guess when I had my very subtle excursions outside for a half-cigarette, I wasn’t really fooling anyone but those who lacked all olfactory organs. :o

My husband’s started to take his Chantix. So far, he’s complained of feeling “weird” and having vivid dreams. (Says he was irritable too, but it seemed like just another day to me. :wink: ) His quit date is Sunday.

I was in Orlando for a convention, flew back to Ohio last night on a 6pm flight. (Halloween Horror Nights at Universal was awesome! lol)

Last smoke was on way to airport, around 4:20pm. Left the rest of my pack, and an unopened pack in buddy’s car (to be given away).

Hopefully left my habit there too. We’ll see how it goes.

Yay, **pantheon **and fingers crossed for Mr. Dung Beetle on Sunday.

I’m having to re-read the Carr book to stay ‘in the mood’ to stay quit. This nasty little addiction keeps nipping at me, and its teeth are sharp. I am flinging water, straws and candy at it.

I didn’t smoke in the house [sub]very much[/sub] and never in the office, so these places aren’t associated with smoking for me. But damn, the stepping outside for a break and a smoke and a ‘reward’–I really miss that. It’s very much a set habit, and I still automatically think, “when I’ve ____, I’ll have a smoke.” Grr!

Every day that passes without a cigarette, though, is a day where new habits are subtly confirmed. I must remember that.

Damn, the car sure smells nicer, too. (My car didn’t arrive with an ashtray, so I had a small glass container with a lid that I used for an ashtry. The lid had a good seal, which did keep the car less smelly than the usual car ashtray in my previous car, which was the kind that just slide back into the dash. Ever notice how that just sits and stinks, no matter how frequently you dump it in the garbage? Eww.)

My reward for not smoking in the car is that I have as many CDs as I want in there and I can sing along to anything I want and as loud as I want.

You can’t sing and smoke at the same time.

Quit smoking for a week now. For me, it’s because I want to be a better singer and attract more women. The health thing was the last on my list of reasons honestly, (sadly?). Anyway, I don’t have any tips really… the hardest thing for me is when I’m drinking.

On the fourteenth it will be nine months for me. I’m fairly confident I’ll never go back. It feels so good now to not be a smoker after over twenty years of being addicted.

My craving advice? Don’t substitute.
Get used to the feeling of wanting one. Just get used to it. Accept that your body will want to stop feeling the ache of withdrawals but you’d be a sucker to fall for it. Every craving is another minute you’ve won and every craving is the poison slowly being pumped from your body. Visualize that.
It worked for me. Allen Carr helped though. :slight_smile:

My silkquit meter reading:
8 months 3 weeks, 4 days, 13 minutes smoke-free
1,344 dollars saved
6700 cigarettes not smoked
3 weeks 2 days 6 hours saved in my life

Just checking back in to say I have made it another day (26hrs) without a single puff. Here’s hoping…

Pantheon - Free and Healing for One Day, 20 Hours and 5 Minutes, while extending my life expectancy 3 Hours, by avoiding the use of 46 nicotine delivery devices that would have cost me $9.19.