I have not known any better.

I have been smoking since the last 15 years almost now. The month I left home for college, I started smoking. I still remember the first drag that I bummed from a batchmate in college. I even practiced smoking alone at my room so I can finish a whole cigarette alone.

So, I have never really lived alone without smoking in 15 years. A constant companion, I do not know how it feels to not smoke, and face the usual situations that I face in daily life.

I did not quit somking as a new year resolution, neither did I slowly quit it. It just happened one day when I didn’t have cigarettes, and I didn’t want to smoke. I didn’t resist the urge or anything… there was no urge really.

And the 15 odd days that I have been without smoking, I have realized that the cravings for cigarette are basically for some very specific events /occasions

For me, the events most associated with smoking:

  1. When you got nothing to do, you smoke
  2. When alone
  3. Before and after a meeting
  4. When you want to take a break
  5. when watching a movie
  6. When drinking

I simply drink water and chew toffees now for these. And I have a variety of chewables that I can choose depending on my mood too.

Come to think of it, the only thing I miss about smoking is just that my hands used to be occupied doing something. If I replace that with something to fidget with, the only other withdrawal symptoms that I have is the occasional heating of my chest in anticipation of a smoke whenever I encounter the circumstances that were associated with smoking.

Stressful situations are the most challenging, and What I have realized is, if you are able to resist the urge for the first stressful situation and figured out an alternative, chances are you will stick to it.

I hope not to overthink this, or make a big deal out of it. Probably turning a new leaf is not that big a task as we make it.

Marketing & Product Expert. Loves Cross-pollination of ideas. Writes about experiences with products & thoughts on company strategies.