Don’t quit trying to quit smoking

Don’t quit trying to quit smoking


Whenever I ask smokers why they don’t quit smoking, the kind of answers I get most are:

  • “I’ve tried to lots of times… but I just can’t do it.”
  • “I know it’s a bad habit, but I’m too far gone.”
  • “I’d love to quit smoking but the urge to smoke a cigarette just drives me nuts every time I try to do it. I just can't resist it.”
  • “I am addicted to nicotine.”
  • "I've tried lots of different ways but they've never worked."

I tell them, “When you really think about it, I think you would have to agree that being addicted to nicotine is not the reason why you can’t quit smoking. That’s the reason you smoke. The only reason you can’t quit smoking is that you don’t know how to quit smoking.”

Let’s face it… if you knew how to quit smoking, you’d have done it by now.

Also, you should come to terms with the fact that you don’t really have a smoking habit. Using those terms to describe what you are doing is just a way of rationalizing the fact that you are doing something that way down deep you know is really dangerous. It’s called junkie-thinking.

Most of the books, products and programs I purchased during my 43-year quit-smoking effort approached smoking as a habit. Very few of them that I am aware of, approach smoking right up front as an addiction. to the drug nicotine. I think that’s because they know that if you felt you were addicted to nicotine, you would be way more motivated to make a stronger effort to eliminate your addiction than you would if they just get you to see it as a habit since a habit seems a lot easier to deal with.

In all my years of trying to quit smoking, nobody that I am aware of ever approached quitting smoking as a learnable skill.


The people who sell and market the nicotine withdrawal products, e-cigarettes and prescription drugs won’t make any money if you just go out and learn how to quit smoking all by yourself and then do it. Once I made it out of that swamp of nicotine addiction, I was free of them forever. (them being anyone who profits in any way by exploiting my addiction to nicotine)

When I realized that learning how to get myself ready to quit smoking was the reason I had succeeded at quitting smoking forever. I was amazed that I had not thought of approaching it that way before… because it makes such perfect sense and I had approached so many other things that I succeeded at that way - e.g. learning to walk, skate, ride a bike, sail a boat, run a business... etc.

Can you play a piano?

If not, there is really only one reason why you can’t play a piano. It’s not the fact that you can’t do it. It is the fact that you don’t know how to do it.

Can you break par on a golf course?

Again, if you can’t it’s only because you don’t know how to do it. These are skills that you have not learned and developed. Most PGA golfers can break or at least get close to par on most golf courses and that’s because they went out, learned how to do it, did the work and then… did it!

Just about everything in your life that you can do is something that you had to learn how to do first.

Quitting smoking is the same thing… a learnable skill.

So then… how do you learn how to quit smoking?

The technique for learning how to quit smoking is no different than any of the other skills you have learned throughout your life.

  1. You identify exactly what it is you need to learn.
  2. Then you learn everything about it. (the more you learn, the better you’ll get.) I can help you there.
  3. Then you do it.

You may not get it right the first time, but you’ll get better if you approach quitting smoking from the point of view that you are in the process of learning how to do it, and you are prepared and motivated to do whatever it takes to do that. All you need then is persistence and here’s what U.S. President Calvin Coolidge had to say about persistence:

“Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence.
Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.
Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.
The slogan ‘Press On’ has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.”

Now then, not learning how to play a piano or break par at Augusta National won’t kill you, but if you don’t take the time to learn how to quit smoking before you try to quit smoking, you are taking a big risk. You are betting your heart, your lungs and even your very life here… plus you are going to waste a lot of time and money.

And now for some good news

Learning how to quit smoking is easier than learning how to play golf or a piano… a lot easier.
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