Okay, Don't Quit
Your first undertaking focuses on gathering information about your smoking habit. You need to notice each time you smoke no longer can you smoke automatically. The times and situations connected to each cigarette must be dissected and examined for weaknesses. Weak points will be attacked; strong points will be undermined. In order to direct these efforts, you need to identify specific target cigarettes.
Making lists simplifies the identification process. Your lists of smoking times and situations will become your personal guide for directing attacks and maneuvers. Since these lists are based on the precise way you smoke, the program becomes customized to your personality and life situation.
Make a list of every time you have a cigarette. Be specific, e.g., at breakfast: after cereal, while drinking coffee. Don't worry about quitting or cutting back at this time, just list each time you smoke. If the situation is repeated, list each time it occurs. For example, three cigarettes with coffee would be listed as three separate cigarettes. Each cigarette with be the focus of an adjustment so be sure to list every one.
Since your routine and circumstances will vary, you may need additional listings for weekends and holidays.
This is a typical smoking list:
Habit or Addiction?
Once you have a solid list and are aware of when you're smoking, you need to recognize whether the cigarette is due to a habit connection, or whether it's part of your nicotine addiction.
For example, the four cigarettes you have while waiting ten minutes for your ride to work are probably habit cigarettes. On the other hand, the first cigarette you have after a three hour movie is probably an addiction cigarette. Saying to yourself, "I need this cigarette," usually marks it as an addiction cigarette.
Your smoking needs to be divided into habit and addiction cigarettes.
The distinction between habit and addiction cigarettes plays a major part in your divide and conquer efforts. It allows you to customize a counterattack for each type of cigarette. In the early part of the program you'll leave the addiction cigarettes alone your disruption and routine breaking efforts will focus on the habit cigarettes.
The easiest way to make the distinction between types of cigarettes is to examine your need level at the time you have the cigarette.
Throughout the day, whenever you have a cigarette, write down whether it's a habit or addiction cigarette. A piece of paper slipped into the cigarette pack works well ("H" for habit, "A" for addiction). No times or dates are needed, just H or A.
The goal is to recognize the difference between the two types of smoking.
Some cigarettes aren't really habit or addiction types they're stress reducers. Anything familiar helps you deal with pressure and uncertainty. These stress reduction cigarettes function as elaborate worry beads. For now, treat your stress reduction cigarettes as habit types. Later in the program you'll explore alternative stress reducers. Appendix A offers a short stress management plan for anyone needing to reduce stress levels.
Once your list is complete, rewrite the list with your most important cigarettes at the top and the least important at the bottom.
Here's the previous smoking list, arranged in order of importance:
Just knowing when and what type of cigarette (habit or addiction) you smoke is not enough information to direct an attack. Smoking connects to every fabric of your life: your senses, your contact with others, your routines, and even your fashion statements.
For the upcoming maneuvers to be effective, you need to know the specific connections attached to each cigarette.
For each cigarette on the list, write out what each of your senses are doing, what other events are going on, and if any equipment is involved.
This list will be a long one, but it is essential to future steps.
2. With coffee in morning.
11. After lunch.
19. After dinner.
5. With coffee while planning.
1. Getting up/dressed.
17. Driving home.
3. While driving to work.
12. On the phone.
13. On the phone.
9. With coffee.
14. On the phone.
15. During meeting.
16. During meeting.
20. During movie.
8. With coffee.
4. While driving to work.
6. On the phone.
7. During meeting.
10. On the way to lunch.
18. While reading the paper.
21. After snack.
22. Watching television.
23. Watching television.
Tired of making lists? This is the last one. Remember, you can still smoke whenever you need to.