It was in a sense, similar to how I developed the habit in the first place-unconsciously, and almost by chance. I had weighed all the family, money, and health arguments in favor of a quit smoking decision, but simply could not climb over the prevarication barrier.
The seat belt sign was on, so no prizes for guessing that lighting up was not allowed as well. It was 1988, so airlines had not mustered the courage to forbid smoking on their flights. I guess I was far too important in the commercial terms of a frequent flyer, for any cabin crew to tell me what to do, in any case. That was not different from flunkeys at work, a docile wife with a mere child at home, none of who could direct me to quit smoking, or to do anything else for that matter.
It must have been the blue sky because the thought came to me from virtually nowhere. What if I were to hold off lighting up until we had landed? It was a relatively short flight, so delaying the next ‘cancer stick’ could hardly count as a quit smoking kind of surrender! I passed up the coffee because I could hardly remember when I had last drunk the stuff without a satisfying cigarette to follow.
It became a kind of game when I was on the ground again. I held back from reaching for my pack and lighter until I had checked in to the hotel, until after dinner, until the next morning, and so on. I kept telling myself that I had not actually quit smoking, and was only experimenting with delaying the next smoke for a bit.
What I have Learnt after I Quit Smoking
My self-deceit approach is probably not the right way for you to quit smoking. It does not apply in this Millennium either, with a whole new array of aids to kick the dreadful habit. However, there are things I have seen and experienced after I quit smoking, which you might find handy when you take the plunge, which I pray will be right away!
Badgering smokers does not work. The realization and motivation has to come from within, and all the people who have succeeded in climbing the quit smoking mountain have like I, taken the momentous decision abruptly. Positive strokes, such as hints about all the things to which you can look forward, work better than dire threats about fatal diseases and penury!
You can never let your guard slip. Everything you may have heard about vicious rebounds after one has quit smoking, are true. You may not have lit up for a decade and more, but the addiction lurks inside you like a genie, ready to spring back and take over your life again at the first puff!
Let me end this piece on a cheerful note: you will breathe easier and slower almost right away. Food and beverages will acquire new and delightful flavors. Your longevity will climb as quickly as spare cash in your wallet, and finally, the day when the stench of tobacco will sicken you is not far off at all!