How to Give up Smoking

A big part of how to give up smoking is to increase how much pain is associated to continuing smoking. And, to enhance our perceptions of pleasure for a future without smoking. Whether it's to gain greater health, to look better or to have more energy. Whether it's to save money, feel more in control or to increase your sex drive. We are all motivated by pain and pleasure. We are driven away from that which we perceive to cause us pain and towards that which we perceive will bring us pleasure. And, these PERCEPTIONS can be intensified.

Perceptions of Pain and Pleasure

Imagine, if you will, a cartoon character clinging onto a pole, suspended vertically out of shark infested water. The higher up the pole they go, the further away from the sharks they are and the safer they feel. However, say they lost their grip for a moment and slid down the pole towards the water. As they start to sense the sharks biting at their heels, they are suddenly re-motivated to head back up the pole to safety.

Image of Cartoon Man clinging to pole looking afraid (for article about how to give up smoking) from James Branna Hypnotherapy

Why we cling on to Smoking

To use the sharks' analogy; when we smoke we are usually halfway up the pole. We know that the sharks are down there and we know the risks. We are aware that giving up smoking would be a good idea, but we are not really that close to the sharks yet.

Cartoon Shark for article how to give up smoking by James Brannan Hypnotherpy for smoking cessation

In other words, we don't perceive enough PAIN yet with smoking to change our mind about it. At least the pain isn't that close to us or immediate enough for us to change our mind at the moment. It's perhaps human nature not to change unless we come to a point where we feel WE MUST. It's only when we perceive enough pain associated with something that an internal shift occurs. After which we tend to commit to making the change and it may even feel like a "no-brainer".

How to Give up Smoking using Hypnotherapy

In Hypnotherapy, what we do is get your unconscious mind to associate more pain with smoking. We make it more immediate as well so that it pays attention. Then we go on to associating greater pleasure with being free of cigarettes so that you can start to feel really good about your decision and more positive about your future. We allow your unconscious mind to look closely into the future and make its own decisions about what serves your life better.


The Two Paths

Image of person walking down a beautiful countryside path. For article about using pain and pleasure perceptions in order to stop smoking with Hypnotherapy. How to give up smoking by James Brannan.

One thing I do with my clients is to guide them to imagine two paths in front of them. One leads off to a future of continued smoking and the other to a future where they're smoke-free. I get them to really experience going forward in time and sensing the truth of what occurs as time goes on. What this does is allows the unconscious mind to see things more immediately. Usually, our mind 'brushes off' things that are out in the future. But when it has the opportunity to sense a future reality in this way, then it gains a whole new perspective. At the same time, it amps up your motivation 'ten-fold' in the present to make great decisions and to feel good about them.


Feel great about yourself

Once these adjustments of pain and pleasure have embedded in the mind, the challenge of how to give up smoking becomes far easier. These alterations of thought allow stopping smoking to feel good. You will have a greater sense of GAINING from stopping smoking than losing something.

Image of woman breathing fresh air and feeling great with sunset behind her. For article about how to give up smoking with Hypnotherapy.

You will feel like you are FREEING yourself from something that you no longer want. Rather than perceiving that you are depriving yourself, you will be more focused on everything that you are now GIVING yourself. Health, more money, freer breathing, smelling better, freedom from nicotine controlling your thoughts. And, more great benefits that only you can think of for your life.

To find out more about how to give up smoking you may like to read the parent article of this one: How to Stop Smoking with Hypnotherapy.

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