The Positive Intentions Of Your Smoking Habit
Continuing the series of articles I’ve written previous forming the 5 Steps To Becoming a Non-Smoker D.R.E.A.M. process, this week we’re exploring the first two steps which are really looking at the positive intentions behind the smoking habit.
Step 1: Discover the positive intention of your smoking habit.
The first step is to discover the positive intention of your smoking habit.
Let me ask you, what are the reasons you have for continuing this smoking habit? This is going to be a good insight into what you’re getting out of it.
Think back over the past week; when do you smoke and when do you NOT smoke?
Are there any patterns forming?
Do you find that you’re going for a cigarette around the same time each day? If so, what is happening around that time?
Think back over the course of the day. What triggers are there that tell you that it is now time to smoke?
How do you know when it is time to have a cigarette?
When you have that cigarette, what happens for you? What do you feel? Where do you feel it?
What about those times when you don’t smoke? What is happening then that allows you to put that habit on hold and focus on something else instead?
What do you fear might happen if you were to become a non-smoker? Do you believe that smoking is ‘saving you’ from that outcome?
Is that fear realistic?
TAKEAWAY POINT: Given that your unconscious mind recognises that all habits have a positive intention, understanding what positive purpose your smoking habit provides will ensure that you can work with what is needed to become a non-smoker
Step 2: Reframe your understanding of that intention.
You know smoking is bad for you, right? Yet, why is it that we have a logical understanding that smoking is bad yet we just can’t seem to break it?
The answer is because we unconsciously believe we’re getting something good out of it. Once you have determined the positive intention of your smoking habit, it is time to build a new relationship with that belief.
This can sometimes be challenging but it comes down to this; your smoking habit is tricking you into believing that it is doing something good for you. It is doing it so well, that sometimes we can’t see beyond the trick, however, like looking behind the scenes at a magic show, once you see the trick for what it is, you find it very hard to be fooled again.
So what kind of tricks does the smoking habit pull on you?
It might make you believe that it is providing you with a sense of calm and relaxation in stressful situations. Yet when the body inhales those thousands of toxic chemicals in each cigarette, it actually responds the way a body should when it is being poisoned. It releases adrenaline, which increases the heart rate and causes the body to respond as far away from relaxed as possible. What you’re actually experiencing is a combination of Dopamine release and deep breathing exercises, both of which can be achieved without the smoking habit.
Smoking might trick you into believing it is a ‘treat’ for you, or almost like it is your friend. Yet what kind of friend is going to steal your money, ruin your health, make you age before your time and backstab you by treating you like dirt? How is this different from the ‘friendship’ the smoking habit offers?
One of the biggest cons that ‘the smoking habit’ often does is to confuse people’s identity.
They describe themselves as ‘a smoker’. You are not a smoker though – you are someone who does the habit of smoking. I used to ski but that doesn’t make me now a non-skier. It just isn’t something that I do any more. You weren’t born a smoker. ‘Smoking’ isn’t a natural process we were born to do.
It’s important to make sure that we realise that we are more than ‘the label’; you are simply someone who does the habit of smoking and all habits can be changed.
With that in mind, what kind of person DO you want to be? Stop for a moment and consider what kind of values and behaviours you’re going to want to become as a nonsmoker?
Who you are defines what you do. Take a moment to sit down and consider, as a non-smoker, what do you do and what do you no longer do. Become aware of all the ‘what if’s’ that are going to come up; what if I gain weight? What if I go into a social
engagement where there is drinking? Become aware of them, write them down, consider what behaviour you’re going to show in those situations. The more you become aware of them now and know how you want to respond, the more prepared you’re going to be when
those situations arise.
These are just a couple of examples out of many that highlight what can be done to change the relationship that we have with the smoking habit, to begin to shift our perception of the behaviour and to recognise it for the trick that it actually is.
TAKEAWAY POINT: The positive intention that the smoking habit gives you isn’t real. It’s a trick. It’s… well… ‘smoke and mirrors’. It’s time to hold a mirror up to that positive intention belief and to blow it up, recognising the trick for what it is.
Next week, we’ll be looking more at how to establish new habits to replace the old habit.
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You may also like to read:
Breaking Addiction Through Counselling and Hypnosis
The Truth About Hypnotherapy and Smoking Cessation
Facts About Habits That Might Surprise You
What Does That Smoking Habit Want For You