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You’re almost there. You want to quit. In fact, 80 percent of your brain is sure you can. But 20 percent insists that you can’t. How do you make it over to the other side without falling SPLAT on your face?

 

Do this. Make a list. Of ten reasons you should quit.

Here’s mine.

1. Smoking Made Me Sick

For real. Within a few minutes of inhaling a few cigarettes, my throat would start to tickle and my head would begin hurt. The day after a binge, I’d wake up with a nasty cold that kept me in bed when I had a million things to do.

Smoking shrinks your blood vessels, clogs up your lungs, and wears down your immune system. Your body is less able to fight off bacteria and viruses, so, yes, you get sick. And there’s of course the lung cancer and increased chances of heart attack, stroke, and other serious health conditions.

2. My Husband Told Me I Smelled

He didn’t issue an ultimatum: “It’s either me or the lung rockets.”
But he did, one night right after we had sex, say, “You smell like smoke. And it’s not sexy.” I could have, theoretically, told him to visit a place where there are no lemonade stands. But I knew he was just being honest with me, and that I needed to file that information in the “reasons I should quit” box.

3. I Wanted to Set a Good Example for My Kids

I got tired of hiding it from them. It was getting complicated. I rationalized that smoking in front of 11-month-old Katherine was okay because she would never remember it and she would be unable to tell on me. But three-year-old David could very well process it and file the picture (and definitely debrief the rest of the house on the white candy sticks). It was too much of a risk. One day I finally said to myself, “Self, if it’s so important to hide this habit from my kids, shouldn’t I quit?” And there was silence.

4. I Looked Stupid Lighting Up After a Run

You can picture it, right? Here I was working so hard on my wellness
program: eating lots of greens, loading up on Omega-3 fatty acids, trying to get adequate sleep, meditating, and of course exercising five times a week. So when I’d light up after a good run, you can imagine the stares. The snapshot was like a Sesame Street episode where you have to pick out one thing that doesn’t belong in the picture. That one thing was the white stick.

Continue reading why I quit smoking.

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