Hey Mystrose! I’ve seen you around helping people out heaps. I’m grateful for that, thank you for all that you do.
I want to point something out, just from my perspective.
I feel shame, because I made a big deal about it and failed.
Last night, I thought, “why the hell am I smoking this?” I just put it down and I haven’t picked it back up.
I feel like at this point, all I’m doing is wasting money and messing up my lungs. It’s just not doing anything for me anymore. I’m bored with it in a way.
You feel shame for what you perceive to be a failure, but whoa, this actually strikes me as a huge success. I’ve struggled with substance addiction myself, and hitting a point where I really started to question what I was even getting out of it anymore, when I was feeling bored with it, was a huge turning point.
It’s possible that this minor relapse could be used as ammunition against future cravings. Maybe you’ll be able to fight them off with these memories by reminding yourself that you haven’t actually been getting much out of it lately anyway. Mindfulness is a common technique for applied to help people cede cigarette smoking, for example – smokers will be asked to really pay attention to the feelings, tastes, smells that they experience leading up to, while they smoke, and after. Some people notice that it obviously tastes and smells really bad, that their heart thumps like crazy, their throat hurts, their breaths feel less effective, and so on. Maybe this could help you too, in retrospect or in the case of another relapse. It sounds like you’re already doing this to an extent.
I seriously think you’re doing great. The way you’re talking about this sounds healthy to me. There’s no denial, you’re taking an objective look at your situation informed by how you’ve felt before and after using. I think it’s worth celebrating these little victories. Go you!
In terms of assisting with cravings, Wings has mentioned what I would have tried to say already. The habits you’re dropping leave behind a lot of empty space, and that space will feel less glaring if you fill it with something else. That could be anything, but healthier coping habits like exercise are definitely a great idea. A stationary bike would be perfect! Sometimes it might help to do something creative with the feelings you’re facing in the moment, too. Here are some examples to express what I mean: Angry dancing with headphones on when you’re just fed up, writing lyrics about how crap it feels to be stuck with cravings you can’t ignore, drawing pictures of happy trees and serene landscapes to help you feel like I’m there. The right answer would be whatever feels right to you in that moment. I hope that helps in some way!
You’re doing great, thank you for sharing!