Smoking was enjoyable, mostly. A crutch to bridge the periods of boredom, the uncomfortable pauses in social events, to cover nervousness and to take away appetite, the relaxing effect after a meal. I used it and abused my body. Not that I ever thought much about that aspect.
Two things happened that brought it home to me just how unsociable smoking was to those who didn’t. One couple who socialised in their kitchen/diner would always put the extractor fan on when I lit up. I didn’t really notice because we were in the kitchen weren’t we, until someone else pointed it out and that made me so selfconscious I didn’t smoke in their house from then on.
On another occasion, on the way home from babysitting I realised I had left my handbag behind. I ran back to fetch it, and found my friends had opened all the windows and doors and were spraying odour killer around. I was horrified and somewhat ashamed that they felt so strongly about the smell of smoke.
So I could go for short periods without smoking when necessary which to me was almost as good as giving up.
However gradually my friends stopped smoking, and I was virtually the only in our group who puffed away. I began to feel selfconscious and the disapproval was palpable so I started to go outside to smoke.
All this happened years before the current smoking regulations came into force but I was determined to stop. And as Mark Twain said, it was easy, I did it lots of times!
I tried herbal cigarettes, herbal tablets, hypnosis but in the end it was sheer willpower, self disgust and exasperation that finally tipped me into the smoke free habit, together with using chewing gum loaded with nicotine. I gradually managed to reduce and have now been totally smoke free for more than 15 years.
In truth I would have much preferred to use a more natural product and when I heard of the new Rescue Chewing Gum I really wanted to tell everyone about, but especially anyone who is really desperate/keen to junk those cancer sticks.
Chewing gum really did help me, I felt calmer. Recent research has shown that chewing gum helps to relieve nervousness, improve alertness and reduce stress. Research also shows that chewing gum for an hour in the morning seems to reduce the appetite to some extent. But the reason why I am so interested in the Rescue Chewing Gum is the natural ingredients used, each piece of chewing gum has a liquid Rescue centre – the famous combination of five flower essences discovered by Dr Bach almost 80 years ago.
Suitable for vegetarians a month’s supply comes in a handy portable box ideal for taking Rescue on-the-go. Rescue Gum costs £3.95 and is available from Boots, Holland & Barrett, Lloyds Chemist, independent pharmacies and health food stores as well as grocery stores nationwide. For more information visit www.rescueremedy.co.uk
Why not buy some on your way home tonight and take the decision to stop smoking – It’s No Smoking Day tomorrow, let Rescue get you going!
Tips to help:
Keep an eye on your progress – keep a chart, by day
Keep your hands busy – get going on those word puzzles, sodoku, whatever that are in every paper these days
Give yourself targets of really positive treats – a weekend break, an active goal – climb that mountain! Yes, you’ll feel more energetic as all those toxins slowly leave your body
Acknowledging a dependence on nicotine and tobacco is a crucial first step and can be the all-important catalyst that smokers need to seek professional medical help and succeed in become smokefree.
There are Stop Smoking Services provided for free by the NHS. This support has been shown to increase a smoker’s chances of stopping by up to four times, compared with going it alone.
Why not join the million smokers who will use tomorrow to try to quit. It could just work.
Or perhaps you know someone who is desperate to give up smoking and might benefit from some help? You could make it your Good Samaritan deed for today! and tomorrow …. why not for the next twelve days! If you help just one person to quit smoking wouldn’t that be worth the effort?
Kate Campbell, Contributing journalist
To enter the draw send an email to email@example.com with NELSONS RESCUE GUM in the subject box and your contact details in the text area. Make sure your entry reaches us by 18 March 2011. One entry per household. The draw is restricted to readers resident in the UK.