Quitting smoking successfully is something that involves many resources, and that you must truly commit to. After all, you may have been smoking cigarettes several years, and long habits are not broken overnight. When dealing with a substance as addictive as tobacco, and with habits as powerfully reinforced through repetition as smoking cigarettes, then it is that much more difficult to change. This is why once you have taken the positive step to quit smoking cigarettes, there is always the possibility of a relapse, as unpleasant as that may sound.
Relapse occur most often when you think that you have the addiction beat, and that you think you can have “just one” cigarette. Understand that when you relapse, you are never having just one cigarette. You are, in effect, smoking all the cigarettes you will smoke until you quit again. So before relapsing, tell yourself if you really should be smoking those 10,000 cigarettes… Are they really worth it?
Common belief holds that relapses occur most often in threes: three days, three weeks, three months, and three years. There is no scientific basis for these numbers, but anecdotal evidence as well as personal experience point to a grain of truth to these numbers. The important thing is to pay attention to the cigarette cravings you will get. Realize that they are nothing more than your dying addiction trying to trick you into injecting some new life into it. Don’t do it.
While previous smokers will never be free of the danger of relapse, you must know that an early relapse is not the death sentence to your quit smoking efforts. You have to resolve to be more careful and to pay closer attention to the relapse warning signs. When you are able to see them for what they are, you will be able to quit smoking cigarettes for good.