Every now and then, one of the always fascinating comments left on Self Help Daily will be so dead on that I just have to share it with everyone. Richard, from RWP Solutions, left a comment on the Is Soda as Bad For Us as Smoking post. I’ve never smoked but I’ve been a first class Diet Dr. Pepper addict for years and years. And years. And years.
Richard had the following to say about smoking, “As a smoker I am finding that I am addicted to the act of smoking as much as I am the smoke itself. I crave picking something up, putting it in my mouth, stomping it out. I need to have something to do with my hands and I find myself using cigarettes as “thinking” aids.”
He makes an outstanding point – we often are more addicted to the actions than the results. When I’m thirsty – water, tea, juice… any liquid satisfies the thirst. It isn’t as though diet soda is the only drink that makes the thirst go away. In fact, tea chases thirst out of town like Marshall Matt Dillon chases out cowboys with ill intent. (If you need help overcoming addictions, see addiction treatment in South Carolina.)
Sometimes when it comes to things that have a tight hold on us, I think it’s more of a habit than a preference. The problem is, say what you will, habits are comforting. If mashed potatoes and chocolate pudding are comfort foods – which they surely are – then habits are comfort feels. I enjoy buying my bottles or cans of diet soda, I enjoy buying it in restaurants, I enjoy drinking it as I work at my computer. It feels good. It feels comfortable.
But I have finally gotten the upper hand. I have pretty much outsmarted myself because I switched “holds” and switched “comforts.” Now, instead of having a diet drink near me, my cat, and my coffee all day – I have iced tea (either black, green, or flavored tea) in the happy mix.
If you have an addiction or a bad habit that you’re trying to weed out of your life, try not to focus so much on the addiction or the habit, itself. This only gives it strength, power, and increases its hold. That’s the last thing you need! Focus, instead, on your strength and your resolve. Focus on things that give you similar comfort and happiness. If smoking is YOUR Diet soda-type hold, find other things to do with your hands – especially during those critical times when you want to smoke the most. Keep suckers or hard candy on hand.
Only you know what will work for you, because only you know what it is that you need. I’m simply here to tell you that you are stronger than the addiction or the habit – after all, you’ve been around longer! You created it, it didn’t create you.
Look it dead in the eye, lower your voice to an intimidating level and say, “I brought you into this world and I can take you out.” Then back up the tough attitude with a tough plan. I believe in you 100 percent and I raise my glass of iced green tea to your success.
A nail is driven out by another nail. Habit is overcome by habit. – Desiderius Erasmus