Nothing Works Unless You Do

Holly's Quit Story


Holly is a member of the support forum here at Smoking Cessation. She recently celebrated a year smoke-free and had some valuable tips to share about how to succeed in quitting tobacco.

Thanks, Holly, and congratulations. A year smoke-free is wonderful!

From Holly:

As I write this, I put out my last cigarette 365 days ago.

I began my quit-smoking journey in September of 2010 with my first genuine quit attempt.

That quit lasted for three weeks. I tried several more times after that, all without success. I would sometimes make it as long as 8 days and then sometimes only a day.

I tried again New Years 2011...I was serious that time...I made it just over a week. I tried everything from nicotine patches, to gum to Chantix...even those electronic cigarettes. I remember admitting utter defeat and crying on my porch steps. I prayed to God for him to help free me from this demon. I felt like I would never be free. I made a promise to myself at that moment: I would quit smoking before the year was done.

Setting a date did nothing but cause me more stress and anxiety, so I decided not to set one. I committed myself to researching and educating myself on everything about smoking cessation. Every day, I would surf the web for information and support.

On the night of June 23, 2011, I was sitting on my porch smoking as usual before going to bed.

I had two cigarettes left in my pack. I smoked them. It was then that I realized that I had none left -- unheard of for a smoker, we always have our cigs on hand! I decided that it was a sign. This was My Time!! I stubbed out that last cigarette at 11pm and went to bed.

I haven’t smoked since that night, and yesterday I celebrated my first year of freedom.

A few days after I quit, I found the guts to post on this forum (which I had been lurking on since my last failed attempt). It was a life saver. I truly love and respect all of the friends I have made in my quit group, the Quitters Jun-ited, and on the forum itself. In the fragile moments of my quit, I would read posts from the One year Milestone folder. I longed to be one of them and began dreaming of what I would say when my day had come. It got me through a lot of tough days. I am no expert on quitting smoking, but if I had to list my most valuable pieces of advice it would be this:

Nothing works unless you do. Simple as that. All the gum, patches and medications in the world won’t work unless you do too! Quitting smoking is tough and it can be messy. Don’t expect for a quit aid to do it for you. It’s like showing up to a marathon expecting not to run! Those things will take the edge off, but in the end it’s all you. Step up and own your quit. Give yourself some credit!

The craving to smoke will pass whether you smoke or not, so why not just keep your quit?!?! It really is true and it is helpful to recite during a bad crave episode.

When you are in the moment, your mind will play on all sorts of emotions trying to get you to give in and light up. In reality, the craving will pass. Hang on to your quit instead.

Smoking is no longer an option. Once you accept this as your mantra, the rest is reason is a good reason to smoke. Throw away any excuse for lighting up… there is none, simple as that.

Find your strength in helping others. The support you will find on this forum is like none other and has been a critical factor in the success of many ex-smokers. Seek support and lend support, even if it is just someone who quit the day before you. We get stronger by giving our friends a shoulder to lean on.

I could go on and on for days about all of this, but in the end, I just want to express my ultimate sense of gratitude. Thank each and every one of you guys on this forum for being there to support me and to help me get to where I am today. FREE!

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