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Mary Ella’s Weekly Message
April 19, 2010
Becoming smokefree is a process. It doesn’t happen overnight, there is no quick way to go from A to Z, and it takes a lot of hard work — as you know! If I could wave a magic wand and make all of the steps from B to Y go away, I would. But it doesn’t work that way. Working through all of the steps from A to Z will help you stay smokefree permanently.
Quitting smoking has been compared to the grief process. If you have ever lost a loved one, you know that there is no quick and easy way to get over that kind of loss. It’s the same with becoming smokefree. It’s one of those life-changing experiences. If I ask a room full of people to write down the top five most important dates of their lives, most will tell me their birthday, anniversary, birthdates of children and if they have smoked, their quit date. Quitting is a very important milestone in someone’s life.
Let’s take the example of taking a trip. You are at point A and you want to get to point Z. There are two routes you can take. One is the fastest. One involves a little work on your part—finding the great little nooks in towns along the way. This kind of route may take a little longer, but it usually ends up being the kind that you remember, the one that enriches your life experience. You will end up talking about that trip for the rest of your life, and the memories will be vivid.
What’s with this big travel analogy? The point I’m trying to make is that all of the steps you take to get to be smokefree are important ones. The exercises we suggest in the program aren’t meant as busy work, they are all included for a reason. The exercises such as the Pack Tracks, writing down your reasons to quit, and selecting a buddy will each help reinforce your decision and give you strength during the tough weeks after quitting. They are the road signs along the way on your trip that keep you on the right path.
It may be tempting to read through the lessons in the modules quickly, get to your quit date and then only participate on the Message Boards if you’re in the Premium program. That route will likely take you right back to where you started—point A. Take the time to read a lesson, stop, wait 24 hours and think about what you’ve read. Take time to work on the suggested exercises and contact your buddy. Communicate with other participants on the Message Boards, and then go back to the next lesson.
Following the “rules” of the program will help you get to point Z in the most effective way—smokefree. What are the rules?
- Read through every lesson in every module.
- Complete all of the suggested exercises.
- Give and receive support on the Message Boards.
Don’t take a short cut. Allow yourself the time you need to shore up your commitment and face the nicodemon head on. You’ll thank yourself in the end.
Until next time, I’ll see you on the Message Boards! J Mary Ella
Don’t forget: If you’re in the Premium program and want help fast on the Message Boards, put “HELP NOW” in the subject line of your post. If you’re looking to offer help, watch for those, “HELP NOW” posts and alert your other FFS Online buddies friends to offer some assistance as well.