The Pay Off
You know that Nicotine
is a drug and that it acts on your body. But what you may not
realize is that you have two physical connections to nicotine.
The first - physical addiction - is obvious. But the second
– physical conditioning - is easily overlooked.
Nicotine stimulates the brain, relaxes muscles and suppresses
hunger - an extremely useful drug. Ask yourself which is faster
• Deep breathe
to clear your head - or smoke?
• Stretch to relax tense muscles - or smoke?
• Eat properly - or smoke?
Because you 'like'
how smoking takes care of your needs and simplifies your life,
you form a strong emotional attachment to it. Why should you
care how it works when all you need to know is that it does
- fast and effectively? So the physical pay off gets hidden
beneath an emotional pay off.
synapses Calms me
synapses Wakes me up
blood sugar Suppresses my hunger
When you decide
the long term costs of smoking outweigh the short term benefits,
you try to stop. Now you miss it and crave it. So you need to
find substitutes for nicotine. But until you know exactly what
this drug did for you can't know how to best replace it. And
the fastest and easiest way to find out, is to get back to the
basics and begin with your body. Otherwise your emotional attachment
will cloud and delay your ability to find the most effective
alternatives. Then you will waste most of your time trying to
psychoanalyze and/or resist your cravings rather than using
Cravings are simply
your body's way of saying; "I need and I need it now -
I need food, comfort/relief, stimulation, relaxation, time out
etc." They are your body’s way of insisting that
you take care of yourself and it’s always your choice
how to do that. When you give your body what truly needs (once
past the physical addiction), you will never crave nicotine.
You don't need to
deal with the deep rooted source of your anger, for example,
you just need to deal with the effect that it has on your body
(tense muscles) which triggers a craving for relief (nicotine
or stretching). As soon as you take care of your body’s
needs in a timely, appropriate and effective way, your craving
for nicotine will dissipate.
In the beginning
‘Life after Nicotine’ requires a certain amount
of thoughtful preparation and practice. But it quickly becomes
your new automatic behavior and only then is your quit/relapse
cycle finally broken.
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Stephen Polansky All rights reserved.
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