Why do your quit attempts fail? Why do smokers like you fail at quitting? Have you always wondered why so many people fail at quitting smoking? Why do you fail over and over again? Are you seeking knowledge to help you finally quit smoking and actually be successful at your quit attempt? If you are you’ve come to the right place!
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Also, I want you to put in the comment section if you struggle with these very things, or if you did struggle and you were successful tell us about that in the comments section. Allow other people that read these posts to benefit from your experience.
If you’re just struggling and you have questions put your questions in the comments section. That’s the whole point of the comment section!
One last thing before I jump into the content. At the end of this post I’m going to put a link to my calendar so you can book yourself into a free 15 minute phone consultation with me. I’m just going to get you on the right track to quitting smoking for the rest of your life.
Take advantage of it. We’ll have a good time. It’s fun. It’s really quick, simple, and easy. Just make sure you read to the end of this post because if you read to the end I’m going to tell you the #1 thing that people who manage to actually stay quit do.
Let’s just hop right into the content.
Quitting smoking and failing – here is what you need to know. The average smoker tries 30 times to quit smoking. That’s no different than me when I was trying to quit smoking.
As a former smoker myself, I probably tried MORE than 30 times. I can’t even remember how many times I tried to quit smoking and failed. It literally feels like thousands. Now, I’m sure it’s not. I’m sure it’s less than 100, but it was a lot.
There were so many times I would wake up the morning thinking, “I’m going to quit today,” and then by the end of the day or early the next day I would fail and start smoking again.
I remember 1 time in particular. It was a nice warm summer morning. I woke up. It was a beautiful day. I’ll never forget it.
I said to myself, “I’m going to quit smoking today.” I got up out of bed, and I didn’t smoke. I was very determined. I had engaged my will power to quit and to quit for life.
“I’m not going to smoke!”
I had a shower. I had breakfast. I had my coffee, but I didn’t smoke, and I always smoked when I had a coffee.
I got in my car, and I didn’t smoke in my car. This is another place I always used to smoke, but I didn’t smoke. I made it to work. I got through the 1st quarter of the day without smoking. I had a break that most of us would take around 10:30. We’d go downstairs. We might have another coffee, and we’d hang outside the office building and have a cigarette.
The other smokers and I called it “the smoking pit”.
I had my break and I didn’t smoke. I went back in. I went to lunch, and I didn’t smoke. Now, I hit the end of the day. I hadn’t had a cigarette in almost 24 hours. Now, I’m constantly thinking about cigarettes! The cravings are starting to kick in.
I have no plan, zero plan, and I’m constantly thinking about cigarettes. I’m driving home and I cannot stop thinking about cigarettes. I drive by the gas station I usually buy my smokes from. I’m thinking I just want a cigarette put me out of my misery, but I drive by anyways.
I get home. I’m still somewhat determined, but I’m feeling really weak like I’m going to break any minute, and I can’t get cigarettes out of my mind.
After dinner it’s just too overwhelming. I can’t deal. I get in my car. I drive right back to that very gas station I drove by literally hours earlier and managed to say no to with my willpower. I bought a package of cigarettes and I lit up, and I smoked.
Does this sound like you? This is very familiar to almost anyone who’s tried to quit smoking because almost everyone who tries to quit starts with cold turkey. Only 7% of people manage it.
The #1 reason why people fail at quitting smoking, and why we go through this loop of quitting and then re-quitting is this. You know what cycle I mean – quitting, then starting, smoking and quitting, and then starting smoking again, and quitting again. We loop through this over and over and over and over again! Why? It is because the method we’re using. We’re trying to quit smoking cold turkey.
That’s the #1 reason why we fail.
The #2 reason actually is stress. This post isn’t about the #2 reason, but I’ll put a link here that you can click on if you’re a stress smoker. This link will take you to my video specifically about how to deal with stress when you’re quitting smoking: https://youtu.be/gOMuuptWh8A
What we are dealing with today is will power. The top reason why people get stuck in this quit-start-smoking-again-quit-again loop over and over is because we don’t have enough willpower.
When I say “willpower” what do I mean? I just mean cold turkey. All cold turkey is, is using your willpower to quit. The 2 terms are interchangeable. They mean the same thing.
There is nothing more to cold turkey than using your willpower to quit. If you want to pick the #1 way to fail at smoking over and over again cold turkey wins at a 7% success rate.
Let’s break this down. We’re going to talk about those people that manage get into the 7% and be successful. Let’s look at what it is those 7% actually do. It’s important to understand that to know how YOU can be successful at quitting smoking.
Before we do that let’s look at the 93% of people who fail using willpower. There’s a couple of really good reasons why.
Why do 93% of people only manage to quit smoking with the aid of a paid program? We know that’s the truth from science. If you’re like me, you are in that 93%. So, why do you and those 93% of people fail?
Here’s the reason. It’s about willpower.
Willpower is your ability to control or to exert control to do something or restrain an impulse. When it comes to smoking what will power is really doing is restraining that impulse to smoke.
Here’s what that means. Your conscious mind says, “I don’t want to smoke” but your unconscious mind says, “Smoke feel good. I have a habit of smoking.”
It’s actually very complex, and we’re not going to get into all the details, but essentially your conscious mind is going one way and your unconscious mind is going the other way. Your conscious mind goes, “No smoke” while your unconscious mind goes, “Yes, smoke”.
This is what we call in neuroscience being psychologically incongruent. You are incongruent. You’re consciously thinking, “I don’t want to smoke. I don’t smoke. I don’t want to. I don’t want to smoke,” but you have this uncontrollable desire to just smoke.
You can call it a habit or an addiction, or whatever. That’s for another post. The point is it’s pulling you in the opposite direction of what you consciously want.
What happens when these 2 things battle?
Well, your conscious mind can do 5 to 7 things at 1 time. That’s how it’s designed. It’s basically a wimp. You’re unconscious mind, on the other hand, is a super computer. It is so powerful that with all of our understanding of science and quantum computing to this day we cannot build a supercomputer to rival your unconscious mind. That’s how powerful your unconscious mind is.
So, you’ve got this wimp of a conscious mind trying to use willpower to go one way, and you have this super computer that’s wired with a habit to go the other way. Who do you think is going to win? Your unconscious mind of course!
Let’s go down another layer. How does it actually win?
What’s actually happening at a neurological level is willpower, your ability to exert control over an unconscious impulse, is not an unlimited resource. It’s limited. You only have so much of it. It is finite not infinite. It goes down and deteriorates and disintegrates over time.
The further you go throughout the day the less willpower you have. This is 1 of the reasons for sleep. You sleep to bring your willpower back up.
This why people that understand willpower do things that use their willpower in the morning when they have the most of it.
This is a good hack.
For example, if you are on a diet decide what you’re going to eat for dinner in the morning because that is when you have the most willpower. If you don’t by the time you get to 6 o’clock you’re tired and your willpower is low. All these things throughout the day cause your willpower to diminish.
Picture this. It is the end of the day you’re tired, you’re frustrated, and you’re cranky. It’s hot outside, or whatever. You’re driving home and it is 5 o’clock. You have not planned for dinner. Now, you have to go to the grocery store.
You think yourself, “I should buy salad and chicken to make myself a chicken salad for dinner. That will be healthy and help me lose weight,” but you drive by a pizza place. You have diminished all of your willpower, and you have not planned for this. Guess what you do 9 times out of 10? Your unconscious mind just goes, “I want pizza” and your conscious mind just gives in because you’ve depleted most of your willpower. That’s how willpower works.
It’s the same reason I failed in my story about getting to the end of the day only to go buy smokes after dinner.
Why did I fail? Why couldn’t I stop thinking about cigarettes? It’s because I’d depleted almost all of my willpower. I was trying to use my wimpy conscious mind to overrule a super computer to make a smart decision.
I didn’t plan, and so I failed.
That is what’s actually happening to you. That is why you fail time and time again. That is why it is so hard to quit using will power! You only have so much of it, and it diminishes over time.
That’s what life is like for those of us that are in that 93% group and have to use a paid program to quit smoking because we can’t quit through willpower. That’s the reality.
There is something to be learned from these 7% of people that actually do manage to quit with willpower. We really know 2 things that they do that are different or unique. One thing is something they do, and 1 thing is something they just have. Let’s start with what they have.
They have an IQ of 150 or higher. If you have an IQ of 150 or higher it’s likely that you’re going to be in that 7% that can quit using willpower. If you are a high achiever you are more likely to be in that group. High achievers are able to power through their willpower to the end of the day. It kind of makes you hate them just a little bit more it, doesn’t it?
I’m not one of those people. I do not have an IQ of 150. I wish I did, but most human beings have an IQ between 85 and 115. That’s 68% of all human beings. So, the 1st thing that people in the 7% have is they’re high achievers and they have high IQ’s. That’s awesome for them. That’s great. You probably even know some of those people. They’re probably somewhat annoying, and they probably quit smoking no problem, just like that. That’s just the way it is.
Let’s look at the other thing that they do differently. Do you know the other thing that high achievers in that 7% do that the rest of us mere mortals don’t? They plan. Not only do they plan, but they plan more than a week in advance before quitting smoking.
Quitting smoking is not about, “I’m just going to quit when I wake up this morning” like me with no plan. In fact, my entire plan was, “I’m just going to quit today.”
That’s not a plan!
For people that are in that 7% that’s not what they do. They plan more than a week in advance before their picked quit date. They prepare. If you want to know more about how to prepare your mind for quitting smoking, and actually plan so you have a better shot at being in that 7% just click on this link to my website where you can download a free eBook, How to Prepare Your Mind for Quitting Smoking.
Here is the link: https://quitsmokingtoronto.ca/
Just go to my website and download it. It will tell you all the steps you need to do to prepare your mind for quitting smoking to get you into that successful 7%.
So, that’s the 2nd thing about them, but let’s just go back and look at these 93% of people who aren’t in that group now. What is there for them? What can you do to get through this cycle of quitting smoking over and over again?
Well, what you can really do is plan. If you do not plan you’re most likely to fail. You need to plan. Failure to plan is planning to fail. I know it’s an expression, but it is really, really true.
That is the #1 thing you can do to break yourself out of this quit cycle.
Plan. Plan for the cravings. Plan for withdrawal. Plan for what you’re going to do when you’re driving home and you drive by the place you always buy cigarettes. You have to plan for these things.
Let’s just go over this.
If you have other insights into how you managed to do it then please put that in the comments section below, or if you’re struggling and you have questions about what you can do put those questions in the comments section below as well. That’s the whole purpose of the comment section.
If this is your 1st time reading my content and you want more tips, tricks, and hacks on how to quit smoking for the rest of your life then check out my YouTube channel and subscribe. Be sure to hit the notification button too, and remember that there’s a link below to put yourself into a free 15 minute phone consultation. https://calendly.com/quitsmokingtoronto/30-minute-appointment-strategy-call?month=2020-10
Take advantage of it. It’s free, and it’s fun! You can also follow my Instagram. I post lots of videos of people who have done my program on my Instagram channel in short little snippets so you can their experience hear in their own words.
Thank you so much for your time and attention. Blessings to everyone I look forward to working with you soon. Stay safe. Wear a mask, and be healthy! Blessings.