The day I quit smoking
Six years ago today… I stubbed out my last ever cigarette. It was at 10:15 in the morning as I walked down to the tube station to go to Harley Street and see a hypnotherapist.
It was a strange feeling. I was really aware that I hadn’t noticed that cigarette quite as much as I should have. Should I have savoured it more, shouldn’t it have lasted longer? Why didn’t I notice smoking it – after all, I may never have the chance again!
Something in me was scared. I’m not sure whether I was more scared of succeeding than failing. Strange emotions indeed. I was torn. Part of me wanted to stop the disgusting habit and yet, there was still a part of me that hung onto it fondly – how would life be without my constant companion? This must sound strange to anyone who has never smoked, and probably quite familiar to everyone else.
Outside no 1, Harley Street I debated whether to have another one before going in and decided against it. I couldn’t go in stinking of cigarettes, could I?
I had been here before. Not Harley Street, but I had seen a couple of hypnotherapists in the past. Somehow I still held the belief that this was going to be the only way that I could stop for good and I had heard a few things about this ‘NLP’ stuff that this guy used too. Thankfully, my previous failed attempts had not put me off and I had been willing to put myself on a 3 month waiting list. Maybe this time… this could be it!
After winding my way through wood panelled corridors and peculiar staircases, I arrived in the room and sat down nervously behind the desk. This guy had done his homework. He had read the answers on the questionnaire that I had sent months ago, and we talked for a while about my ‘favourite’ cigarettes and various other aspects of my smoking. How refreshing to find someone who realised that I was an individual. Maybe this time really would be different.
I have to admit the rest of the session was a bit of a blur, from sitting in a lovely reclining chair to opening my eyes some time later, not really sure about everything that was said, but feeling that somehow, something had changed and with some excitement and a bit of trepidation I left.
I’ll never forget walking down Wigmore Street that day, as I looked around, strangely aware of everything around me, the busses, the traffic lights – somehow I just knew that the smoking was a thing of the past – I really was free of it. It was no longer part of me, just something I used to do.
That was six years ago and I can quite honestly say that from that point on I knew I would never have another one – and I haven’t. I haven’t even wanted one, not a tiny little bit. What an amazing feeling! … and what an amazing six years. Who would have known then that my curiosity about hypnosis and NLP would lead to a complete change of direction? How so much of my life has changed as a result and how great it’s been.
I look back at that day and smile… and smile some more.
By Cathy Simmons
If you too want to feel that good, and quit smoking, then call me now on 0207 4197915