Thankfully I have been smoke free for about 13 years and I was fortunate that I never really enjoyed smoking, so breaking free from it was not too much of a hardship. I was ready and could walk away from it relatively easily and this is the feeling I encourage in those who also want to kick the smoking habit – to become ready and leave it behind with ease.
I am all too aware how difficult breaking the habit is for some people. A friend of mine in Ireland recently told me how much he loves smoking, really enjoys it. I am not in the business to preach or persuade anyone to stop smoking so I simply listened to him. Yet I did find it odd that this ” love ” of his was very one sided. He loved but in return received a hacking cough every morning, potential illnesses of which we are all fully aware, a one in two chance of dying of a smoking related disease, potential sexual impotence and a depressed immune system just to mention a few of the gifts from his loved one.
Because smoking and other self harming and destructive habits are quite often maintained by the smoker heavily identifying with the perceived benefits of smoking – such as ” It helps me to relax ” – hypnotherapy is useful in that it can help break these links and free the habit from the smoker’s core identity.
In my sessions with smokers, I don’t persuade or frighten; I help the smoker explore his habit and become free by gently breaking those attitudes and behavioural patterns which holds the habit in place.
I consider it a great skill I have learnt – to be able to encourage a healthy lifestyle and potentially having a client leave with ten years additional life expectancy gained. A job worth doing I feel.