17 August 2006

Is not as much choice?

The tobacco companies have promoted the idea that smoking is a matter of personal choice. There really is not as much choice as they have suggested to their customers. Nicotine addiction is as hard to break as heroin or cocaine addiction. By telling smokers that smoking is a personal choice, the tobacco industry has helped to keep its customers in denial about the true extent of their addiction. If smoking is a choice, then what is the rush to quit? The tobacco companies have used this spin to help keep millions of customers buying their deadly products.

Admitting that you are smoking more out of addiction than choice will help motivate you to go on to the next steps - taking control of yourself and becoming a nonsmoker. This admission will further serve you by helping you stay smoke free later. In the months and years after you quit, when temptations to smoke occasionally overpower you - and they will - remind yourself, "I have an addiction and I'm powerless over tobacco." Saying this to yourself in overwhelmed moments of desire will help give you the strength to say no to "just one" cigarette. If you can make it for just five minutes without giving in, the urge to smoke be controllable or disappear. In this way, you will be able to stay smoke free for life.

If you have tried to quit smoking and failed before, take comfort in the fact that most smokers fail several times before quitting successfully. Your past failures are not a lesson that you are unable to quit. Instead, view them as part of the normal journey toward becoming a nonsmoker.

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