While I didn’t entirely stop myself from consuming all the sweets in the house, going outside and digging in the garden was exactly what I needed to keep my hands busy. I had a few more healthy snacks later and avoided my crazy plan to go get Dairy Queen ice cream. The only difference between my sweets/food craving is that I tend to go on auto pilot and just “follow my nose…” to quote Toucan Sam. I’ll have to apply some of what I have learned to help me tame my inner cookie monster. So what have I learned in 28 days?

1) You need a good reason to not do whatever it is you want to quit. This reason has to be bigger than the payoff you’d get from giving into the problem behaviour.

2) Meditation is your friend. I’ve meditated on and off since I was 14. Science backs it as a legitimate way to feel less anxiety and more compassionate. It changes your brain. I teach my students how to meditate when I teach anger management. But I haven’t been so good at following my own advice until now.

My favourite is the Peaceful Sleep Meditation on Fragrant Heart. I’ve been doing it almost every night to drift into a peaceful sleep.

3) If you can survive the emotional rollercoaster of the first two weeks you’ve got this. I literally felt like a teenage girl during those weeks. I was scared neuroplasticity wasn’t really a thing that my brain was screwed up forever. It isn’t.

Two more days and it has been 30 days nicotine free. I just got to stay mindful and not go on auto-pilot impulsive nicotine quests. I can do this.

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