21 February 2006

Lesly's 2 Year Smoke Free Speech

Lesly's 2 Year Smoke Free SpeechToday is mine 2 month milestone, that's why second post in the same day (it's a miracle :), and, here and so forth I want to post a copy of Lesly's 2 Year Smoke Free Speech from quit smoking at about.com. Lesly's photo at the left of this text. I like this story and I hope you will too...

"Two years ago I was a smoker.
My cigarettes were my best friend..."

Two years ago, I was a smoker. My cigarettes were my best friend and most constant companion. I could not walk from one room to the next without my cigarette pack and lighter firmly gripped in my hand. I could not sleep through the night without getting up and spending time with my "best buddy". The whole world was my ashtray. No place was sacrosanct - not the car, not the family room, not my children's bedrooms. There was no "No Smoking" sign that could daunt me - I'd been known to lean against them to cover them up while I smoked. If you had asked me, I would have told you I was a considerate smoker. That's what all smokers think. The truth is there is no such thing as a considerate smoker, just like there is no such thing as a considerate Russian roulette player. Eventually, you are going to make a mess that someone else has to clean up.

I like to say that SOMEHOW, all the stars and planets aligned themselves perfectly with my decision to try, try again to kick the butts out of my life. Of course, that is not completely true. I had done extensive reading, and had found this forum where I lurked day after day, watching as people actually QUIT SMOKING! People who sounded amazingly similar to ME!

In the beginning, it was very rough. I struggled, and I had constant visitors. Their names were anger, self doubt, anxiety and depression. I couldn't seem to keep them out of my space, and they hammered me relentlessly about the AUDACITY I had to think I could desert my "best friend". I kept my eye on the prize and tried to ignore their nattering.

I got sick of the visitors and decided I needed reinforcements to boot them out of my life. So, I invited in Determination to be my body guard. Next, I welcomed in Gratitude as my new best friend. These friends served me well; they were great positives to replace that negative chatter. The unwanted guests still tried to hang around, still tried to sneak their way in, but they got weaker and weaker as the walls of my smoke free world got thicker, the locks got stronger, and my friends and I marched on. Gradually, the chains of addiction loosened - almost so gradually, I didn't really notice.

I can remember telling a Newbie the other day about my car stalling out in a parking lot on a frigid, below zero day with strong, gusty winds. The towing place I called promised to have a truck out to me within an hour. It got there 3 hours later. Was I mad? HECK yes! I was anxious, and mad, and freezing and I felt like crying. But through all of that - I never had one teensy weensy THOUGHT of a cigarette. It didn't even occur to me! When I posted this to the Newbie, it took me back - WOW! I never even realized it until weeks after the fact!

Do I still get depression, anger, etc. knocking at my door? Yeah, I do, but they would not DARE come around because of a cigarette. Determination, Gratitude, and I have come way too far for that! If I have thoughts about cigarettes at all, it's kind of like you would think of an old lover that you happen to run into. You might look at them and say - hmmmm! I had some GREAT times in that relationship! Then you think a minute, and you say - OH YEAH! NOW I remember - that SOB (gender neutral) was a rotten, no good slime bucket that was trying to destroy me! Thank GOD I kicked that Ash out of my life (pun intended)

So, to make a long story longer - As Henry Ford said: "If you think you can or think you can't you are right"! So I say - give yourself a huge dose of positive attitude and be amazed at the miracles you can create for yourself in your own life.

Thank you so much for making this journey with me, and for allowing me to make yours with you. We are All AWESOME ASH KICKERS!

Two years, 49 minutes and 30 seconds. 25586 cigarettes not smoked, saving $4,477.58. Life saved: 12 weeks, 4 days, 20 hours, 10 minutes.

Smoking Cessation Quit Meters - Track Smoke Free Time

Quit meters are downloads which, when installed on your computer, keep a running log of your smoke free time. Several are available free online. Many will also track various statistics as you quit smoking - life saved, cigarettes not smoked and money saved. Quit meters are effective stop smoking motivational tools.

Quit Keeper
Quitting can be a tough process, every encouragement can make a tremendous difference - that is where Quit Keeper comes in. Not only will it keep track of your stats, it will track of all of your quit buddies and let you know when their milestones are approaching. A quit meter that is absolutely free!

QuitMeter Counter Standalone
QuitMeter Counter Standalone calculates to the second (or minute, or hour, or month, or year—you name it!) how long it has been since quitting smoking, along with the amount of money saved. The program is fully skin able and completely customizable via the vice-o-matic[tm] interface. This whimsical meter has a one-time fee of $9.95 U.S. dollars, but you can download it free for a week to try it out first.

This meter is similar to the ShareMeter above. Good for Mac users. Use the page to calculate smoke free time. You are able to include a QuitMeter Counter on your own web page.

QuitTime Quit Meter
QuitTime is a free downloadable Windows quit meter. It gives you smoke free time, cigarettes not smoked, money saved and life saved by not smoking. When you minimize QuitTime, this information can be displayed on the windows taskbar so you can see at a glance the progress you've made. You can also hot paste this information into any windows editor to let other people know how great you're doing!

Quitomzilla is a Firefox, Thunderbird and Mozilla Suite extension that aims to help you quit smoking while you surf the web or wait for new emails. It appears as a small icon in the application (browser or email client) status bar. When you pass the mouse pointer over this icon, a tooltip will be shown giving the information about cigarettes, money and time saved. Quitomzilla raises an alert notification every time you reach a "milestone". It can display stats in several different languages as well.

16 February 2006

Reasons to not start smoke other than it will kill you

message to teenagers

Young people continue to get addicted on tobacco even though they all know that it is bad for them. 1/3 of those who smoke eventually die from it. Is this sufficient motivation to not start smoke? No, it is not, and here is why.

Young people are immortal. Teenagers live forever. Common perception of time is logarithmic and when your 18, your parents are much older than you are and your grandparents are so much older than you are, that in your mind that is like perpetuity. The health effect from smoking are so far off in the future that it is beyond the limits of teenager's imagination.

If you do not smoke before you are 20, you will not start. By the time you get to 25, you have developed the mental skills to be able to defend against the social pressures to start. The facts are that people over 20 do not start smoking. Smokers come from teen smokers who cannot quit.

Though, there are many other reasons to not smoke other than cancer and heart attacks. These reasons are actually a lot stronger, affect you a lot sooner, and affect all smokers.

Life as a smoker is a life of addiction. You cannot quit. You may think you can quit. You may live your whole life thinking you can quit. But the reality is, you cannot quit. Sure, some people do quit, but only through tremendous exertion. And even those who do quit are fighting to stay that way for the rest of their lives.

Once you are addicted, you have to have it. There isn't any choice because it is uncontrollable. You will smoke. Battle is lost. You don't want to smoke. You wish you could quit. You intend to quit someday, but not today. Today you will smoke. And every time you smoke you will think back and wish you never started. Talk to anyone who smokes. They will tell you themselves. Both smokers and nonsmokers alike agree that a person who doesn't smoke should not start.

When you get to smoke a pack a day your lifestyle will be greatly distorted. Every event in your life will be based around being in places where you are close enough to go somewhere to smoke. And if you are going somewhere where smoking isn't permitted, the issue will be how long you will have to go without smoking and if the event is good enough to give up smoking for that period of time.

Because smoking is addictive, you are not really choosing if you are going to smoke or not. You are really choosing if you are going to become a smoker or not. Because most people who want to quit smoking cannot do it, you have to ask yourself this question, "What do I want to become? Do I want to be a smoker?"

Friend that smokes will want to smoke in your car while going to the movies. If they cannot smoke on the way, there they will have to smoke outside just before going in. That way they can get their "fix" that will last them for two hours. If they are really addicted, they will have to smoke one in the middle of the movie. So, instead of enjoying the story, they will be looking for a boring part so they can sneak out and burn one without missing anything.

Cigarettes are so addictive that you will even smoke when you're sick. You can be in be coughing your head off and so sick you can barely get out of bed, and you'll still get up, put on a jacket, and go out on the front porch in the middle of winter to smoke one. If you wake up in the middle of the night needing a cigarette and you don't have one, you will put on some clothes and drive to the nearest open store at 3:00 in the morning to get a pack. During the war in Bosnia, smokers were so addicted that they would trade food for cigarettes even though they were starving.

Do you want "gotta have a cigarette" to be part of your life? Before you start smoking, you should consider if you want to spend your life addicted.

Life is short. It's may seem like forever when you're young, but it's just a blip and then your gone. During your life, you will experience a lot of things and who you are and what you think about is what defines you as a person. You are what you think and what you do. Imagine if you will that at the end of your life that your thoughts are downloaded and put into a great database and sorted by category of thought and added up by time spent thinking about it. If you are a smoker, you will find that the number one activity in your life was either smoking or thinking about smoking. If you are a nonsmoker you number one activity is getting laid or thinking about getting laid. When choosing between cigarettes and sex, I'll take sex.

Most of what you hear about smoking is that you'll be sick when you're old. But in fact, you will also be sick when you are young. One of the early effects of smoking is you will be short of breath. You will not be able to run as far as you used to or walk uphill on hot humid days. You will find yourself wheezing and coughing and you just will not have the physical stamina you used to. You will be 25 years old and not be able to keep up with nonsmokers who are 45 years old.

Unlike other drugs, smoking involves the participation of nonsmokers. For example, if someone is smoking, I have to breathe it. And nonsmokers very much do not want to be part of someone else's addiction. When a smoker smokes, the cigarette smoke fills the room. Everyone has to breathe it. And to a nonsmoker, it stinks. There can be a room with 200 people and if just one human being smokes it changes everything. You are now in a smokey room. The smell goes everywhere and gets into everything. Even after the smoker leaves, his smell is still there. It also gets into my clothes and my hair. If I'm in a room with smokers, I have to go home, change clothes, and take a bath to get rid of the smell. Sometimes I have to put my clothes outside so as not to stink up the house.

Thus, nonsmokers do not like being around smokers. And it's not as if smokers do not care. But smokers have to smoke and they will smoke. So, nonsmokers have to deal with it around them and let them go outside and throw cigarette butts all over your yard. And even if you have a smoker over and they don't smoke you can still hear their troughs. You look in their eyes and they're thinking, "Please, please, please, just let me smoke one cigarette, please, please, please."

A smoker is not just a person who smokes some cigarettes. Smoking is a lifestyle. And the lifestyle of a smoker is very different from that of a nonsmoker. Because smoking becomes so integrated into what you do and affects the decisions you make it becomes integral to who you are as a person.

So, since nonsmokers don't want to be forced to deal with the side effects of smoking, smokers are always surrounded with this nervousness when they are around nonsmokers. Smokers will tend to hang with smokers and avoid nonsmokers. They tend to go places and do things where they can smoke and avoid going places and doing things where they can't smoke. Thus, if you are a smoker, smoking will control where you go and what you do and it will alter the course of your life. Smoking is not only and addiction, it is a lifestyle, and it defines who you are as a person. So, if you are considering smoking you are not just deciding if you will smoke some cigarettes. You are deciding if you want to "be a smoker."

Most if not all of teenagers want to grow up and get married, raise a family, and live happily ever after. But who you marry will depend on whether or not you smoke because nonsmokers tend to avoid smokers leaving smokers to the smokers. Smoking is a very important aspect to a relationship. If you pick up the personal ads in any newspaper, you'll see a lot of people specify a smoking preference. So, if you decide to become a smoker, you will more likely end up married to a smoker. And you'll have kids, and they will grow up being smokers.

To grow up is not only about making your own choices, but to take responsibility for the choices you make. What you do affects who you become and if you make bad choices, you will get bad results. You are at an age where the choices you make will affect the rest of your life. If you screw up it is you who are screwing up. You are faced with a great many things. Do I smoke? When do I have sex? What if I get pregnant? What do I want to be? What do I believe in? Who do I trust? What drugs should I try? Who will I marry? Do I want kids? Do I want to go to college? These are important decisions and if you realize that if you make wrong choice, you will have to live with the results.

When you make your own decisions, you take the responsibility of deciding your own future. If you make good decisions you are going to have a better future than if you make bad decisions. You are what you choose to be, so choose wisely.

08 February 2006

The Benefits of Smoking Cessation - Positive Effects of Quitting Tobacco

The benefits of smoking cessation are unlimited! Education is an important part of a successful quit smoking process. When you know much about nicotine addiction, it much more easier to manage withdrawal. Knowledge will give power to you. Firstly, you need to understand the mental side of this addiction, because this is most strong part of desire to have just one cigarette! The urge to smoke a cigarette can be overwhelming. Take some time to learn how to interpret what your body is trying to indicate…

What about positive effects of quitting cigarettes? Yes, it is really nice to stay away from smoking… The volume of strength during the day is overwhelming; and to sleep the sleep of the just is fine; every breath feels so clean and refreshing; more energy, fortitude and self-assurance; more cash in pocket; dress don't stink; coughing is gone; ability to smell again; more work with less effort; house and car smell good; allergies have improved; more free time; white teeth; fresh breath; clear thinking; no more guiltiness about secondhand smoke for children and family; confidence in ability to achieve any goal!

Really, everyone, who stopped smoking, have more respect and even pride in himself.