Yoga and Meditation: Escaping My Smoking Craving

I decided to quit smoking cigarettes. I think this kind of habit is the worst.

I think that psychologically, I was confused by my habit. I hope that by writing this post, I can understand why it is that I became fixated on this habit.

I am fit, I work out. I started meditating. I understood, once I went to my first yoga class, that my lungs are important. I do not know how else to describe it. I feel like a lot of my anxiety was caused by improper breathing, which of course, is worsened by smoking. So I decided to quit. Gradually, I got to the point where I smoke <1 cigarettes. Today was the first day I did not touch a single cigarette.

I think that smoking to me, was a destructive habit. I think that by breaking up with it, I can find the true me. I do not know if any of this makes sense, even to myself as I am writing it.

I relate it to my desire to get into yoga, and what I have learnt is that by undoing, by unlearning those parts of you that you do not agree with, you can live more authentically. Of course, my mind does know that there is a part of myself that needs to be recognised, my dark side.

I do believe that there is a purpose to a dark side, I do believe in lessons being learnt through suffering, and through some kind of pain. I think that smoking is a habitual kind of pain that you inflict on yourself. Breaking up with that habit marks the end of my self-sabotaging.

I am in a process of healing, and accepting love into my life again. I breathe. I relax and I move on from the person I was when I got deep into my addiction, with cigarettes, with harm. With negative beliefs. With self-denial. With doubt. I open up and accept love into my life again. I hope that I can stop smoking. I love the fact that I can breathe properly, I think yoga and practicing meditation has made me more mindful. I cannot smoke now without my whole body being aware of the poison that is going through my lungs. Without being hyper vigilant about the kind of fumes that will be running through my mouth and into my body. I cannot, I think that respect for my body will dictate my life decisions. I commit to my health.

I urge myself to never smoke again. I remind myself that the present moment is something to savour, and to throw myself into.

Addiction is learnt. I believe. With some predispositions of course. Biology and nurture go hand in hand, I do believe, and this is after some reflection and some looking inward that was achieved through my yogi practice, that behaviours can be unlearnt. Addiction can be broken, and not just as a form of wishful thinking, but as a result of some true connection with the self. A self I think that everybody, soul, whatever, can attest to having underneath layers of I would say, anti-self.

The totality of it being a beautiful, complex human being. Always worthy of love. I think that love of a human being should go beyond accepting the good and the bad, but to be able to thoughtfully and mindfully (in the case of yoga), accept that part of yourself as something that is as true as the positive and the good. To be able to do that, I believe, in essence, creates a type of mindset where nothing and nobody can shatter an illusion, or take away from the present. To put it simply, accepting yourself, good or bad, and knowing that you are not perfect, allows for you to be comfortable with the present. Not try to hide from it. No fear of being “imperfect”, and whatever manifestations of escaping from the present moment will dissipate. Addiction, fear, insecurity. They cannot be controlled like the things that we do, or maybe they can. The point is, they are part of you. A totality, a sum of your parts, my parts, that create a beautiful synchronicity between your soul, your ego and the coping mechanisms you have adapted for your own survival. None of which are anything to be shameful of.

I think that by being one with myself, I can wholeheartedly attest to the fact that my imperfections are something I do value, and they are my own. To wish that I was perfect or to create a standard for myself that feels uncomfortable, although it is truly blissful and mind-opening, is a part of myself I value just as much as the part that picked up the cigarette. Loving both parts of myself will create something that does not exist outside of myself, rather, it exists as myself. And having no need to escape from myself can create the kind of life I want, which ultimately, is just acceptance of the fact that I do not think that perfection is something I ever want, and putting it out there is something that marks the true growth, which in essence, is something that is totally not out of reach if you realize that plants, just like humans, grow from soil, which is dirty. All of which gives birth to life, which is not supposed to be anything beyond living. At your own will, at your own pace, at your own desire, which are all essentially labels we have towards our own desire to feel pleasure and avoid pain. This simple biological mechanism I believe is what we operate from, rationalizing our own decisions for our desire to experience life blissfully, or not. All of which I think is fascinating, beautiful and definitely not worth judgment from anyone. Call that my yogi mindset, I think that a huge take away from yoga is that relaxing once in a while is important, for sure.

I do believe that my ultimate goal in my life is just to be totally aware of myself and just get to the point where I’m actually happy with it. And that of course, is a direct contradiction of not having to escape the present moment, however, if it comes to building something, I hope that having a future-mindset, or that desire to escape from the present moment, however justified, can just be something I’m cool with. Life is a journey, I remind myself, and I always have to, which is also something I think I have to keep reminding myself as I go along totally aware of my own shortcomings and strengths, hoping to have it all be okay in my own eyes.

I hope that I can quit smoking, for the reason that I want to. I think that is about enough on the subject of smoking, I was aware of my intention to quit as I started writing this blog post, now I am aware that smoking is but an outlet, one that I would so much rather replace by writing. So I might give this a shot, aside from my meditative state that I like to delve into when I’m trying to let the urge to smoke pass. Today is day 1. I may follow up on my progress tomorrow.










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