Thursday, August 10, 2006

My two least favourite words are.....(part 2)

.....willpower and discipline (but you already knew that).

A couple of years ago, I finally stopped smoking. I'd been smoking for a number of years and done the willpower thing (didn't work), I tried the chewing gum and patches (didn't work), I had 1 - 1 sessions with a smoking cessation counselor (didn't work), I had hypnosis with a very creepy hypnotist (didn't work and cost me a lot of money to boot!).

When I stopped smoking, it was very simple; I just released the need to smoke.

Being energetically ready

And I was ready, energetically ready to stop and using willpower and all of the other stuff was a smokescreen (pun intended) for me not being ready and not acknowledging the downside of stopping (oh yes, there are some!).

I didn't stop on my own, though. I had support. In the UK there are free stop smoking groups run by trained counselors, which I intended. But ultimately, I released the craving and urge to smoke. I wish I could say that I did it by using EFT, knowing what I know now, I would use it, but I used the Release Technique.

I had fairly mild cold turkey in terms of craving - in fact I was surprised by how relatively mild they were. But there was emotional upheaval. Any drug, any addiction is often a mask, camouflage for suppression of emotion and I let rip with all of these suppressed emotions: from anger to elation to joy and everything in between. I really did appreciate the support of the counselors then.

Letting go of my addiction

But my point is that in the end it wasn't willpower that stopped me, but rather just letting go of the need to smoke. This sounds quite easy and it was. But more importantly, it felt safe to stop smoking. Whatever my smoking was designed to help me with, I realised that I no longer needed it anymore; I'd outgrown it.

I use the smoking example re: willpower, because everytime I hear someone talk about smoking or any other addiction, willpower is usually mentioned and everytime I end up screaming at the TV or radio or shaking my head vigorously at reading the newspaper.

Willpower is just a stick to beat people with for not "succeeding" and it's lazy thinking. Using willpower is actually helping you turn more towards the behaviour/actions that you want to cease. Just like the English national football team, you run into an invisible energetic wall of your own resistance. You are working against yourself.

Using willpower is very draining and is unsustainable in the long run, which is why people very easily relapse into previous behaviours ie falling off the wagon.

Ask yourself if anything that you've achieved and that you're proud of had willpower as component?


At September 25, 2006 8:55 PM, Blogger Lee said...

Hi, Julie

Just a short comment... I just used your article on Procrastination from The Ultimate Article Directory in my ezine.


The best to you in all things and keep up the writing,



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