The ultimate objective of quitting smoking is to stop for good. A lot of smokers succeed in stopping for weeks, months and even years, but they don’t manage to stay quit permanently for the rest of their lives.
That’s such a pity. After going through the hard part and beating the physical cravings, you’d think that these people are already in the clear after not smoking for such a long time, but evidently, they’re not.
So, why are some ex-smokers able to stop forever, while others succumb to their old habits and become addicted again?
For a lot of people, it’s because their initial motivations for quitting do not exist anymore (such as quitting for a nagging girlfriend who is no longer around), while for others, it’s because they didn’t have an adequate plan to deal with the mental part of the addiction.
Far too many people make the mistake of overly focusing on the physical aspects of smoking cessation, and fail to give sufficient attention to the psychological side of the habit.
As a result, after struggling through the first two weeks to two months when the physical effects of not getting any nicotine into the body are greatest, if the mental addiction is not addressed, and lifestyle changes are not made, there is a high chance that smokers will fall back into their old ways and fail to become an ex-smoker.
Once you get past the initial period when the physical cravings are strongest, the key to staying quit for the rest of your life is to have a good strategy to deal with the psychological addiction.
After a few months, your body will not crave the nicotine anymore, but you may still be tempted to have a cigarette. This may be because you think it will make you feel good, or just out of habit as you still associate yourself as being a smoker.
The perceived pleasure from taking a puff will always be there, regardless of how long you’ve stopped smoking. For many people, it remains with them always. As time goes by, this urge to smoke may get slightly less, but it is always present, so be prepared for it.
You’ve had a bite of the apple. You know what it tastes like now, and how good it can make you feel. You can’t go back to the days of being a non-smoker. You will always be a smoker now, just not an active one, but an ex or reformed smoker who knows how bad it is for you.