In honor of World No Tobacco Day (May 31st) and the unofficial quit smoking month of May, I have some advice: stop smoking. It’s possible to already hear the tobacco users around the world crying, complaining, and leaning heavily on the defensive crutch that their habit is addictive. People who smoke may not be able to handle this article, but it is time they had a dose of reality. It’s time for them to just stop smoking.
The amazing thing is that you have seen the aggressive yet honest anti-smoking advertisements. You have heard that it’s the number one preventable cause of death. There is no longer any debate that it is horrible for your health. So why are you still doing it? You should just stop smoking.
Some people claim to be social smokers or only smoke when something (usually alcohol, food, or sex) triggers their desire. I have got bad news; you are a smoker. There’s no gray area. You either smoke or you don’t. Using labels like “social smoker” is only a semantic and psychological trick you’re pulling on yourself. Many of the harmful effects of smoking negatively change your body immediately whether you have one a day or 40. Change your habits for a month and don’t engage your trigger or social temptations. You can just stop smoking.
There is also a type of smoker that says they can quit anytime they want. They say that for twenty years while that bad habit continues to get more ingrained into their daily lifestyle and it becomes part of who they are. Some smokers argue that they like the freedom they have to choose to smoke. I hate to break it to you, but you are a slave. You are shackled to your tobacco master. Whenever you go somewhere, your cigarettes and a lighter are your companions. If you run out or don’t have a light, that immediately becomes your top concern. You plan your activities and social interactions around the schedule of smoking. If you think you have complete control and freedom then try and not smoke for the next month. We’ll see how soon you come running back to your master. The first step is to admit the control it has over you and then you can just stop smoking.
Once you admit the problem, then it becomes just as easy to blame your actions on the addictive nature of smoking. That’s just another trick that is being pulled on you to continue down that destructive path. It’s just another excuse to get away from responsibility. You need to control your actions and determine your future. It only takes one time, when you are about to smoke, to stop and take control back. Just stop smoking that one next time. When the next urge hits you, then all you have to do is stop one more time again. You don’t have to think and battle for the remainder of your life all at once. All you have to do is focus on stopping just the next time. Each time you do that is a victory and it becomes increasingly easier.
Finally we have the smokers that are still clinging to their ultimate argument, that they like smoking. That is interesting. You like emphysema, lung cancer, poison, toxins, heart disease, stroke, and damage to your throat and kidneys? What exactly do you enjoy about having chronic bronchitis, cataracts, airway infections, harming the health of those around you, getting a hole cut into your neck, having amputations, or being attached to a breathing machine for the rest of your life? All of these things are definitely in your future unless you just stop smoking.
In addition to just stopping, there are also a number of resources that can help you:
- NCI Smoking quit line : 1-877-448-7848
- American Cancer Society website or hotline: 1-800-227-2345
- American Lung Association website or hotline: 1-800-586-4872
- National Institute of Health tobacco cessation studies and materials website
- Tobacco Cessation Hotlines: 1-800-784-8669