So why is it so difficult to quit smoking? Surely it's because I'm addicted to the Nicotine???
Well let's think about that for a minute. When you smoke a cigarette you go through three stages of behaviour. This may take a second or an hour, or for someone trying to quit smoking through will power alone, weeks or even months.
At the first stage there is a trigger. The thought enters your head for a smoke. It may be caused by someone offering you a cigarette, or it maybe because you are stuck at traffic lights in the car, or maybe even because you have a gin and tonic in your hand, and you always have a fag with a G&T. Whatever the reason the thought of smoking a cigarette has been triggered in your mind.
Secondly, once the thought of a cigarette has been triggered, then you begin to think about the cigarette more and more. The anticipation of smoking builds up and up and the desire to smoke the cigarette increases, until…
Thirdly and finally, you smoke. And everything returns back to equilibrium or normal. The desire to smoke has been satisfied!!!
Except….there are of course times in the day when you get to the second stage, thinking of smoking that cigarette and you become distracted. The phone rings or someone knocks on the door, or maybe you get busy at work or if you have children, maybe they need something. Every single smoker at some point during the day gets distracted from smoking.
So what does this tell us?
Well what this really means then is that SMOKING is a WANT, rather than a NEED!!! If smoking were a need, like an addiction to a hard drug like heroin you would never be distracted from the craving for the drug, whatever the situation.
A lot of smokers often wonder why they can sleep soundly for 6, 7 or even 8 hours a night without any craving whatsoever. Also, have you noticed how most smokers smoke a similar number of cigarettes each day, whether that be 10, 20 or 30 a day. It may fluctuate a little depending on how much stress the person is under, but broadly speaking the number of fags smoked each day remains fairly constant.
Now compare this to some other addictive drug habits, whether that be alcohol, heroin or any other form of drug and you will see that the person needs to keep increasing the amount of the drug they take to get the same level of effect.
But hang on a minute Rich, I tried to give up before and I got terrible withdrawal symptoms, I got really irritable and piled on a few pounds in weight as well, so surely this must mean that smoking is addictive?
Well for sure smoking is addictive, but the addiction is psychological rather than chemical. Let me explain a little further:
All decisions we take are benefit orientated. So as a human being I will always take the decision I think will give me the most reward, or benefit. This means that the difficulty in giving up smoking is two fold, as we tend to overplay the immediate benefits we will get from giving up smoking, and underplay what we were getting out of smoking in the first place!!!
The problem with most of the reasons we want to quit, whether they be health reasons, financial reasons, family members nagging etc - is that they are not tangible. They are not real to us – either because we cannot experience them or because it is about something that will occur at some point in the future.
In addition, smokers are often being told they get nothing out of smoking, but this of course is simply not true. If it was there would be no smokers!!! Every smoker I have ever met (and there are hundreds) always says they find smoking relieves anxiety and stress. It does not take it all away, but just makes them feel a little bit better Helps take the edge off a particular situation. Now even to a non-smoker like myself that does not sound too bad at all – especially if I could have it 20 times a day!!!!
So how will Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy help me quit smoking??
Well using positively phrased suggestions hypnosis can help redress the balance in our favour, and create tangible benefits for us to quit smoking. How about if you were to feel healthier – not in 6 months time, but right now and especially the next day after you've had a good nights sleep. What about if you felt a tremendous sense of pride and pleasure now that you are a non-smoker???? Well of course there would be no need to smoke – because you are getting more out of not smoking than your were from smoking!!!
If you want to kick your smoking habit for good then call Richard now on freephone 0800 1777 556.
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