Cognitive Behavioral Quitting: A Therapist’s Way Of Killing The Desire To Smoke

 Quitting smoking is never easy because if it is, I would have stopped a long time ago.  I have tried a dozen ways, but every attempt failed.    

 

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I started smoking when I was in my 20s.  I started doing it to relieve stress from work.  Smoking while working made me more creative and helped me concentrate and focus on my task.  Because of the many benefits that I was getting from smoking, I never noticed that I already got addicted to it.   

 

It’s All A Lie 

My therapist told me stress is a part of life and smoking is not in any actuality relieving my stress, and it may, in fact, make my feeling pressured and anxious even worse.  When a person smokes cigarettes, the nicotine (a mood-altering drug) reaches the brain causing the release of dopamine.  Dopamine is a chemical responsible for that relaxing feeling one experiences as he smokes a cigarette.   Because of the pleasure and relaxed feeling, the body craves for it, thus making smoking addicting.  The relief from stress that I got from smoking was only just a short-term sign of withdrawal from nicotine.   

 …a “don’t let yourself think about it” approach to addiction therapy may not only be ineffective, but may even make things worse. — John Smith Ph.D.

Addiction Comes First 

Smoking had become a distraction in my life, but I could not just throw it away.  Every time my urge to smoke hit me, I would stop whatever I was doing and gave in to my craving to smoke first.  My daughter has been asking me to stop, and even my wife.  They used to tell me that they didn’t want to lose me because of my bad habit.  It scared me too, as I started to feel heaviness in my chest.  Walking up and down the stairs started to become a struggle for me.   I have all the reasons to stop, but I did not know how to do it back then without missing the cigarettes.   

 

Sometimes Just Willpower Is Not Enough 

I’ve tried so many times to stop, but I feel a bit off each time, and I just could not imagine how I can go on with my life without my cigarettes.   Each time I fight my craving for smoking, it just becomes stronger because of my addiction.  My willpower is not enough to stop me.    

 In order to maintain success, become aware of your patterns, particularly how and when you smoke. Observe yourself, perhaps taking notes. — Marni Amsellem, PhD

My therapist told me that eliminating my craving from the core is the most effective way to quit smoking naturally.   Just stopping will make me miss nicotine and would make me feel like depriving myself of something, making myself miserable.    

 

My therapist explained to me that the standard approaches to quitting smoking like nicotine patches, gums, and lozenges are just substitutes of nicotine addiction which I already have.  They don’t remove my desire to smoke but merely aids me to quit smoking temporarily.  The worse thing is they only increase my urge to smoke because it made me feel like sacrificing in order to stop.  Once I cease from taking these temporary aids, I will surely go back to smoking just like every other smoker who tried but failed.    

 

Killing The Core Desire To Smoke 

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Most of us have the intuition that if you have any strong goal, then your preference for things that would help you satisfy that goal will increase. If you really need to smoke, then suddenly, cigarettes will look really good to you. — Art Markman Ph.D.

Quitting becomes harder because those temporary solutions do not take away your fear, and you will still light a cigarette after some time.   

 

I’m not saying that all of the above is not effective.   It all depends on the person, but they are not for me. Some of you may have tried those methods too, but still were not able to quit or else you won’t be reading this anymore if you have successfully stopped smoking.   

 

The best and easiest way that worked for me was killing my desire to smoke as suggested by my therapist.   My therapist taught me some techniques on how I can take away first my craving for smoking, and then I finally stopped.  With this method, quitting became more natural and stress-free. I never felt pressured and deprived.    

 

Cognitive Behavioral Quitting  

CBQ method was the technique used to me by my therapist.   It was a stress-free and permanent method.  It killed my desire to light another cigarette, and I never experienced any cravings.  Because there is no craving, I did not experience any physical withdrawal from nicotine.    There was no weight gain, irritation, no headaches, and no loss of concentration.   

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Cognitive-behavioral quitting is about  

  • choosing to stop 
  • believing that you can do it and you can successfully overcome all the obstacles 
  • being determined by smoking your last cigarette 
  • knowing how to deal with your emotions by eliminating the desire to smoke and stay relaxed without lighting a cigarette  
  • staying happy living a healthy smoke-free life  

 

Cognitive-behavioral quitting helped thousands of smokers to stop smoking permanently.   It is said to have a 94% success rate.   Try it, and it might work for you, too!