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Tell a newbie how many seconds a day do you still want a cigarette

Page 11

Remember the first few days after you quit smoking? Remember worrying that the urges, wanting and craves would never end? Here's your chance to reach out and tell both smokers and new quitters what it's like now. Below are 33 pages of comments written by hundreds of former smokers who had successfully quit smoking for days, weeks, month, years and some even over a decade, sharing what it was like for them at these different points in time to be nicotine free.

If a cold turkey quitter, please email us and share with visiting newbies both how long you've been 100% nicotine-free (paste your quit meter stats if possible) and how many seconds each day you spend wanting a cigarette. We'll then add your response to the below "Tell a newbie ..." parade which Joel started back in 2001 in our original support group Freedom.

#251 | 03 May 2003 | Emmamom(DoubleGreen)

I had a brief flash of wanting a cigarette about 4 days ago; it lasted maybe 10 seconds. It wasn't strong. I haven't even been quit all that long. Kim, nicotine-free for 2 Months 2 Weeks 3 Days 2 Hours 27 Minutes 17 Seconds. Cigarettes not smoked: 2054. Money saved: $462.32.

#252 | 06 May 2003 | John (Gold)

What was the fuel that allowed all these folks to move beyond where you are now? Were they all stronger than you, have more will-power or did they simply hold their dreams close, remain honest about what it's really like living the addict's life, put tomorrow aside and instead focus on achieving full and complete victory over today, while living one simple rule - no nicotine, not a puff!

rosebud openingIt may at times feel like your rose bud has stopped blooming but with each passing nicotine-free second you move one second further from thinking about and planning to smoke nicotine throughout your entire day, cigarette after cigarette, day after day, pack after pack, year after year, and one second closer to that inner calmness you once knew, where thoughts of smoking arose only because someone else's smoking problem was met by your senses.

Someday soon you'll cherish your freedom so much that you may return here often not to try and forget or adjust but to try and remember the horrors of smoking and the challenges you faced. This is an amazing journey and regardless of whether or not the next few minutes are the easiest yet or, in the end, prove to have been the most challenging of this entire temporary journey of adjustment, they will be 100% doable!

Breathe deep, hug hard, live long!


#253 | 06 May 2003 | StepperM

I remember reading this post in my Glory Week thinking....oh boy, will I ever get there. I get excited just thinking about this, I can't believe I can actually now post to this thread and honestly say that I haven't wanted a cigarette for a few weeks. I've thought about the stupid cigs but not wanted one!!

Freegirl rainbow em
And I'm only at 4 weeks, 1 day and 16 hours!

#254 | 7 May 2003 | Madge Gold

Hi Joel. Love this thread. I've not posted a lot because I sure don't see me as a role model for the newbies. I'm have an incredibly difficult quit and if I go for an hour without confronting an urge, I'm thankful! I keep in mind what the oldbies say "it will get easier". I think part of my problem and that of most addicts, is that I want to quit, I just don"t want to go through the work of withdrawl!!

MadgeOne month, three weeks, five days, 5 hours, 55 minutes and 26 seconds. 1431 cigarettes not smoked, saving $303.90. Life saved: 4 days, 23 hours, 15 minutes.

07 May 2003 | #255 | OBob Gold

Hi Madge. Your words concerned me a bit. Whenever I hear somebody saying something like they're having an incredibly difficult quit, and they're nearly 2 months into it, it leads me to think that they could use some support. I posted the following thread for you. I've put some of my thoughts, and several links in it that might be useful.

Links and Thoughts for Madge

#256 | 23 May 2003 | Tubes GOLD

Hello All:

I may have posted to this thread some time ago but since I am going to experience a life changing event with my move overseas I thought I should post again.

How often do I think about smoking? Not very much. Even with my move coming up (my flight leaves this afternoon) the tought of a smoke is not in the forefront of mind. There is so much else to worry about!

Before I quit I probably would have had to make room in luggage for many packs of cigarettes. In fact, now that I think about it, I can remember only a couple of times where I bought cartons of smokes, usually for extended trips. smile em

Do I still have thoughts of smoking? Sure. They are different now. Usually the result of some trigger buried in my mind.....the thought pops up and lingers only for a oment.I think about what the result of that first one would be (many more after) and how far I have come, and the thought kind of whithers and is gone. I like to think of it as a cockroach.......when I expose it to the light of reason it scurries away.

Tubes teeth em
Nicotine Free 3 Months 2 Weeks 6 Days 14 Hours 10 Minutes.
2958 LESS Nicotine Delivery Devices
$791.52 MORE in my Pocket
2 Wks 6 Days 13 Hrs 9 Mins 22 Secs MORE in The Saddle, In The Wind

#257 | 23 May 2003 | Parker GOLD

"I like to think of it as a cockroach.......when I expose it to the light of reason it scurries away."

Thanks for that image, Tubes. You have quite a way with words!

Not sure if I have ever posted to this thread. How many seconds a day do I still want a cigarette? That would be zero seconds in the day. I do not want a cigarette because I know where it will lead. Fortunately, I studied hard here at Freedom and know that one = all.

Now let's change the question to: how many seconds a day do I think about cigarettes? That would be anywhere from 5 seconds to maybe 2 minutes. Tops. I actually think about smoking very little considering the fact that my husband is a heavy smoker and I'm around it all the time.

I smoked for 32 years so having occasional thoughts of cigarettes seems to me a small, nay, a miniscule price to pay for my freedom. I cannot emphasize enough how painless and fleeting these thoughts are. Please do not think that this quit has been a piece of cake. I am not unique. I did not magically cast off my addiction. There have been moments of powerful longing. However, my Freedom education has stood me in good stead through those. I used all the techniques taught here. Visualized the handful of cigarettes and an ashtray overflowing with foul-smelling butts. Chanted never take another puff....over and over. Re-read my reasons to quit list. Read Joel's articles and other people's posts. Posted encouragement to others. Worked hard at having an attitude of gratitude.

I don't have to work hard at it anymore. Not smoking feels normal and natural and comfortable now. I've been around here for almost a year now (!) and I've watched lots of people grow into comfort. Some of those were people who did not believe they would ever find it. I believe comfort is available to all of us. Give your quit time to grow and mature. Allow it to send down deep roots and take hold. Nourish it every day by celebrating your accomplishment. Be patient. Your quit will flower.

Best wishes all,
'love em Parker - free and healing for 50 weeks

#258 | 23 May 2003 | CookiesGold




#259 | 26 May 2003 | TXCorndog

Hmmmmm, great thread, Joel! I had about 3 thoughts of smoking today, lasting probably just a couple of seconds each. I would only classify one of those fleeting thoughts as *wanting* a cigarette, and it was quickly talked down by thinking of some of the things I have learned here.

I had a bit of rough going the first couple of weeks, but my quit has become so much easier, no longer a bite-the-nails, white-knuckle kind of thing, and more of a pleasure of enjoying life without that smelly, unhealthy crutch, and a new sense of pride emerging.

I very much relate to your words in an earlier post, Joel, that if the symptoms perceived as withdrawal are still there after weeks of no nicotine, that something else is going on, maybe revealing problems that were already there, but masked by nicotine.

I have chosen freedom from nicotine for 1 Month, 2 Weeks, 1 Day, 9 hours and 32 minutes (45 days). I have saved $130.50 by forgoing 453 cigarettes. I have saved 1 Day, 13 hours and 45 minutes of my precious life

#260 | 26 May 2003 | James (Silver)

I'm happy to say I don't want a cigarette at all. "I don't smoke." Cool, eh!?

6.5 months quit

#261 | 27 May 2003 | notamoment (gold)

In the early months of my quit there were some rough times but they didn't come frequently and they didn't last long. I always found if I could distract myself with some other thoughts or activities that all thoughts of a cigarette vanished before I realized what had happened.

Now, I'm happy to say, I haven't had a craving in months... it just simply does not even occur to me to want one. I spent a week with my sister in North Carolina in February. She and her husband both smoke Marlboros (one of my old favourites). There were a few times when I was left alone in the house with full cartons of Marlies on the table. I remember looking at them and wondering how I ever smoked all those cigarettes in the past. I just honestly didn't want one.

Don't believe the people who say the cravings never go away. That may be true for them but it's not true for me. I crave a cigarette ZERO minutes a day now. But, I am still grateful every day.

Susan (at the end of my rainbow em I found GOLD!!) smile em

#262 | 31 May 2003 | Clare Silver

I don't know if its habit or a craving, but maybe a couple of times a day, the thought of smoking just jumps at me.. It is only very weak now, and only lasts for a couple of seconds... I remember a few weeks ago, when the cravings were a little more stronger, I almost enjoyed the battle.. in a weird sort of way.. I think it was because I knew I was going to win and I loved that control. I could almost hear myself saying, "come on, I am going to win but you can try anyway" Thankfully I haven't had that happen for a while.. These days, I don't have time to think anything because the thought is gone as quick as it comes.

Clare 4m, 1day, 13 hrs

#263 | 22 Jun 2003 | GoldenPeachyPie

+I think about smoking now about a couple of times a week , just that I am so glad I took the plunge and don't smoke anymore , and as to actually wanting a cigarette , that would be ......NEVER !!!!

And I never thought I'd be able to say that !!

Peach XXX 8 MONTHS +

#264 | 22 Jun 2003 | Golddabler1

Hi y'all. I think about having a cigarette about tree times a week and thankully i let the thought float on by like a passing cloud.

Rickdabler 3 months 6 days 12hrs happily nicotine free. wink em

#265 | 14 Jul 2003 | TheConverted

Well I suppose Im a newbie to quitting smoking , Im on day 10 and I think of smoking at least 5 times a day at work and almost constantly in the evenings when Im at home. My wife smokes in the house and thats probably got something to do with it. This is the longest time that I have quit for , the previous times where only for a few hours and then I couldt stand it any more. My greatest motivation at this very moment is watching my wifes aunt dying form lung "something" cancer and having to use oxygen 4 times a day and actually just sitting around at home waiting for the "day" to come - I dont want to end up like that.

#266 | 15 Jul 2003 | EmmamomSilver1

This thread is so important to people just starting out. Within just a couple of weeks, I forgot to think about smoking every day. I right now have maybe 2 thoughts of smoking each week, and I think them through with the knowledge I've gained here, and then I forget smoking again.


I have been quit for 4 Months, 4 Weeks, 9 hours, 14 minutes and 46 seconds (148 days). I have saved $901.43 by not smoking 4,006 cigarettes. I have saved 1 Week, 6 Days, 21 hours and 50 minutes of my life.

#267 | 15 Jul 2003 | CookiesGold

Once in awhile, not much at all now really. When I do think about it, I really think and then the feeling goes completely away. It gets better each day, and I am so happy for that.Life sure does go on. wink em

Cookie Thumbs up em I have been quit for 9 Months, 1 Day, 18 hours, 54 minutes and 37 seconds (274 days). I have saved $1,923.51 by not smoking 10,991 cigarettes. I have saved 1 Month, 1 Week, 3 hours and 55 minutes of my life.

#268 | 15 Jul 2003 | txsmamaGOLD

NEVER!!! I NEVER want a cigarette! Sure, I think about it almost everyday, but I never want one...I'm just thankful of how long I've gone without ONE SINGLE PUFF and am VERY proud of myself (15+ years smoker here). The fact that I still think about them is enough for me to realize the grip of this addiction and that in itself is a TURNOFF...I beat it, and y'all can too!!!!! My lungs are recovering!!

Just thought I'd share that with everyone...
De rose em
One year, five days, 19 hours, 40 minutes and 18 seconds. 9270 cigarettes not smoked, saving $1,390.57. Life saved: 4 weeks, 4 days, 4 hours, 30 minutes.

#269 | 15 Jul 2003 | Nascargal1722

I had to give it some thought. But it seems that the only time I have a craving is after I eat. And it wasn't a physical craving like when I first quit. It was more of a psychiological trigger. Kinda of like my head saying " Aren't you forgetting to do something?" And of course, I'm thinking, "No" And then it's gone. Probably last about 6 seconds. And only about once a day. I know it's about how I use to light up after I ate. So I still think thats suppose to be the end of the meal. But it doesn't last long. It happened tonight after dinner. It also happened yesterday, when I was at a BBQ.

Paula I have chosen not to smoke for 1 Month 1 Week 6 Days 22 Hours 53 Minutes 32 Seconds. Cigarettes not smoked: 879. Money saved: $164.83.

#270 | 15 Jul 2003 | David Gold

teeth em I may have a very fleeting thought (seconds at the most) about once a month! It's not really a withdrawl pain but I guess just a recognition that "yeah, I used to smoke" That's it. I can't believe that I feel such comfort. Life is Good!

1 year +

#271 | 15 Jul 2003 | TaranieriWag

I have been free of cigs for 22 days now, I can't believe how often I don't think of smoking! My husband smokes, I now make him go outside, because the smell is so bad it makes me not want a smoke. Its great that I don't even get cravings anymore, in such a short period of time. I love it! It amazes me that I don't want to smoke! Thank you God, and I will remember to "Never take another Puff" and I will do just great! I have a lot of energy now too that I got back in such a short time.

#272 | 15 Jul 2003 | Rickgoldx5

Nada, Zero,Zip Never anymore and I'm so glad!!


One year, two months, one week, four days, 5 hours, 19 minutes and 57 seconds. 34977 cigarettes not smoked, saving $209,866.34. Life saved: 17 weeks, 2 days, 10 hours, 45 minutes.

#273 | 17 Jul 2003 | 66skylark

I think about smoking about 2 times a week. I smoked for over 30 years thumbs down em and this is my one and only quit.thumbs up em I also live with a smoker.crooked em When the thought crosses my mind - I just smile and say to myself, "I don't smoke." That's about how long it lasts too!teeth em FREEDOM is great!!!! JUDI Six months, three weeks, two days, 5 hours, 50 minutes and 21 seconds. 8209 cigarettes not smoked, saving $1,846.81. Life saved: 4 weeks, 12 hours, 5 minutes.

#274 | 24 Jul 2003 | MsArmstrongKIS

Hello, newbies! I am finally posting to this thread, because I finally feel confident in my reaction to cigarette cravings.

When I say "finally", keep in mind that I mean FIVE MONTHS. This may sound like an eternity to you, but put it in a different context--five months is a blink of an eye! Five months flew by like a freight train! It took only five months until I felt this way, and I could have suffered through many more years or decades of smoking, which really would have been an eternity!

I never want a cigarette anymore. Sometimes I have a desire for a cigarette. Allow me to explain:

To want something is to understand every option, every angle of the question, and make the correct, informed decision. This is what I WANT. What is it that I overwhelmingly, irrevocably WANT after five months? My continuing, wonderful freedom.

To have a desire for something is to be governed by the senses instead of by rationality. Desire is the animalistic response to life. So every so often, maybe once every couple of days, I have a fleeting desire for a cigarette. Extremely fleeting.

Look, I've seen life both ways, now. I know which life I want. You do, too. Make the distinction between rationality and desire. That distinction gets easier the more experience (read: time) you add to your first, correct impulse that smoking is not something you WANT to be enslaved to.

These days, I spend most of my time feeling enormously grateful and thrilled NOT to have a cigarette. It is a lovely feeling. Lots of pride, positive thoughts, strong thoughts, happy thoughts--totally worth the first month or two!

5 months 11 days nicotine free

#275 | 11 Sep 2003 | CKAgger Gold

Well, how long time today have I found myself actually wanting a cigarette ...

This morning, I had to return home after taking the kids to school on the way home, as I crossed the lawns between the blocks, I found myself thinking of smoking, and thinking that I'd become used to some chemical drug to find comfort; And then, once more, I realized that since the sun and the grass etc. all give me stimuli which affect my brain, I am actually still using chemical stimulants - of a more natural sort ... but I'm doing without nicotine.

But, all in all, I think I think today I thought about smoking for perhaps nearly sixty seconds.wink em


I have been quit for 1 Month, 3 Weeks, 3 Days, 12 hours and 27 minutes (55 days). I have saved kr 2,831.45 by not smoking 1,665 cigarettes. I have saved 5 Days, 18 hours and 45 minutes of my life.

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