I’ve just walked up a hill. A very steep hill, as a matter of fact. So steep that a third of the way up, my calves began aching, my head began spinning, and my lungs seemed fit to burst. I paused for a moment. I began to wonder how I would ever get past the pain, and reach it to the top of that darned hill. I began to think about my family. Would I fall by the wayside here, never to be found again? Then an associated thought reminded me of all the happy vacations I had spent with family and friends. I could see the beach. I could smell the sea. I was there, in my mind, paddling through the surf.
Suddenly, I paused again.
I was almost at the top of the hill……..
THAT’S what you have to do in the early stages of stopping smoking. Walk away from willpower! Distract yourself!
When I thought about getting up the hill – about the physical process – the lactic acid in my calves draining, my shortness of breath – I thought I would fail. When I distracted myself – just for that short time – I climbed the hill easily.
Don’t dwell on the process of quitting! Go for a walk, fly a kite, breathe in and out slowly three times – ANYTHING to take your mind from the act of quitting. And guess what?
You’ve already quit!