Commentary

The Nicotine Addiction Trap

Posted by tbaker |

Truths From Terrah IndexBy Terrah Baker

Maybe you missed it, or it’s been longer than two seconds and you have forgotten, but now that you’ve gotten here, take a minute to look at the index photo (page 2) that corresponds to this story.

Scary, right? That’s the reality a nicotine addict lives with every day — unless you’ve started vaping, that’s a whole other story (and let’s not forget addiction is still an important part of that business). Sure, smokers may not directly force the cigarettes they inhale down their throats, but every day they are choking themselves, slowly but surely on the filth that is cigarettes and the drug that is called nicotine. (Let’s stop here and say non-smokers at this time can stop judging the addicts. You’ve just been lucky enough not to get trapped.)

Now, compare that to the images of smoking you see on TV and movies? Notice a difference? That’s because those images are made to make smoking look cool, smooth, sexy, everything but what smoking actually is — slavery to a disgusting addiction that’s slowly choking you, and will, in many cases, end up taking your life.

I’m not saying this to scare you, especially if you’re a smoker, ex-smoker or casual, newbie smoker. More importantly, it’s not to judge you — you do enough of that on your own, and we all have our own stories that have led us to where we are. I’m saying this because recently I re-read a book I have found to be the most helpful in painting a realistic picture of what the smoking trap actually looks like, and it’s not what you see in movies or on TV. Sure, real-life smokers can also portray a Humphrey Bogart, Audrey Hepburn persona, or even a rock star or bad ass persona, or any of the many other projected personas advertisements and TV have led us to believe smoking helps create. The truth — it takes away from who you are as a person and turns you into a guilt-ridden, choked out drug addict, that may someday die from their “habit.”

In fact, if you look at statistics, Cigarette smoking causes about one of every five deaths in the United States each year. So why, in a country where we make such a large deal about drinking and driving, marijuana, cancer, abortion and gun control, are we not addressing this cultural epidemic? Two main reasons: almost 100 years of brainwashing and PR, and money.

But don’t worry yourself with WHY the trap has been set, focus now on getting out of it, or avoiding it. (Luckily, the trap doesn’t have large metal teeth, and is only in your mind.) After reading this book, that basically serves as a self-hypnotization for those wanting to get back to what they were before they needed a killer drug to make them happy, I realized it’s so easy to retrain your brain with the right help. Seek out yours!

Allen Carr’s book is not the only one I’ve read that has helped me untangle thoughts of addiction to nicotine. The Tao of Sobriety that can be found at the Fayetteville Public Library taught me guilt’s role in my addiction, and how to let it go. Whatever your choice of self-help book or clinic, or tool, it’s never too late to be free of cigarettes and get back to life as you once knew it — smoke free, full of potential and free of mental, and therefore physical, slavery.

 

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