STOPTOBER: Emotional Smoking


There are many reasons people start and continue to smoke. Most are learned habits, like being raised with smoking parents, smoking after a meal or smoking when talking on the phone.

Despite knowing the damage smoking can cause 9.6 million adult still smoke in the UK*. However one of the biggest stumbling blocks to quitting is emotional smoking!

Emotional smoking can fall into two categories:

  1. People who smoke to relax.
  2. People who smoke to manage their stress.

Generally these are one and the same but often the emotional reason at the time can be different. Being able to manage your emotions without cigarettes is the key to your future as a non-smoker.

There are three key elements in this process

  1. Understand that smoking doesn’t manage stress. When under stress your body produces a hormone from your adrenals called cortisol. In normal levels this is important for normal life. But under chronic physical or emotional stress this becomes a significant problem. The high cortisol levels lower important hormones such as estrogen and testosterone and DHEA. DHEA is basically your live long and feel good hormone, low levels cause you to feel more pain, feel tired and moody. The important thing is that smoking is a strong physical stress which causes the release of too much cortisol. If you understand nothing else then re-read this part.
  1. cigaretteUnderstand that smoking has no upside whatsoever and that there is only harm with zero benefit. Because of the problems above this eliminates any imagined benefits, because just like the government adverss state, every cigarette is doing you harm. When you do something to your body, day in and day out that causes you harm it is not a stretch to realise that there is no benefit.
  1. Learn and use stress management tools in your life like meditation and exercise. Busy people and those that have never felt the benefits of stress management rarely give it any thought, or place any value on using ways to management it.

More often people look for external ways such as alcohol, cigarettes or drugs to manage their lives, and all of these ways fail. Exercise reading or watching television are better choices but all stimulate the mind instead of calming it.

Angie-Green-and-Black-Dress-4-200x300Spending time in nature, whether in a garden, a forest, by a stream, or at the beach are a big step forward. But it is not often possible to be in these places every day.

Introducing specific stress lowering methods while in hypnosis is the fastest way to create a viable alternative to the false stress management of cigarettes.

If you are want to give up smoking, or feel that you can reduce your cigarette consumption, there are many methods available. You can read more on the NHS Website, check out the ‘Mind Treatments’ available at MindBody Therapy and even listen to an exclusive collection of ‘Stop-ify’ songs selected by Angie Greaves on Spotify.

*Statistics from ASH

Cover Image from Pixabay
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