July 13


All You Need to Know About Hypnosis and Smoking

By Brian Lynch

July 13, 2020

Is This Really Everything I Should Know?

Well, this information is not everything you COULD know about smoking and hypnosis, or everything you SHOULD know, but it’s all you need to understand to realize that hypnosis is the quickest, easiest, most effective way to STOP smoking INSTANTLY. Without spending an unreasonable amount of money or time! For much more information, you can read my other blog posts.

My Information for Clients

This is the information I give to my clients when they come to my office to prepare for the one and only session they need to quit. That’s right: my clients quit after only ONE session! I do offer a free follow-up session for the 2-5% of the people who don’t quit permanently.

How Does Hypnosis Work for Quitting Smoking?

The short answer is that your subconscious mind exists to protect you, and you’ve taught it, absolutely convinced it, that smoking is GOOD for you. And now that you want to quit, it won’t let you!

Because it thinks it’s GOOD for you!

You need someone to talk to your subconscious, in its own language of emotions and images, and convince it to get back on your team and support your desire to quit. It can be pretty easy after that, and most of my clients don’t even feel cravings!

You Have to Want to Quit

The most important thing is that you really WANT to quit smoking. As a hypnotherapists, I simply cannot make anyone do anything they don’t actually want to do.

“Wanting to quit” has 2 parts:

1. You have to WANT to do what I tell you to do during your session. Basically, it means responding positively to what I tell you, and use your wonderful imagination to picture things vividly in your mind.

2. You have to WANT to do what I tell you to do AFTER your session which Is that you make small but important changes in your choices about managing your thoughts or feelings so that you don’t struggle.

Relieving Stress is No Excuse to Smoke

Probably the most common excuse people use to smoke is STRESS.

But people actually smoke all the time, stressed or not, relaxed or not. It’s not like you have a great day with no stress and you magically forget to smoke.

People smoke because they have a very powerful habit that they do all the time, and you reinforce the habit every time you pick up a cigarette.

You can see this most clearly when you look at the times you smoke the most – your trigger times. Probably it’s mostly during that quiet morning time with coffee, driving the car, taking a break, having a cocktail, relaxing, etc.

Smoking actually ADDS stress. Lots of it. Because nicotine creates significant physical stress to your body. Every time you smoke, your heart beats 10 beats per minute faster, your blood pressure goes up, your breathing becomes more shallow, and you create “vaso-constriction” which means all the little blood vessels in your body start to close down and force blood to the center of your body. And, for every pack you smoke, you’ll also generate about an extra ¼ cup of stomach acid.

The Two Forms of Smoking Stress

It also adds mental and emotional stress, in two forms.

#1: It adds mental stress because you’re always wondering “Oh my God, what if I run out of cigarettes?? Where’s my lighter, what if I can’t smoke in here? How bad do I smell? What if someone sees me!”

And #2 is: “What if I get lung cancer? What if I can’t quit and I end up having to wear an oxygen mask? What if I have a heart attack?  Cancer runs in my family – what if I die early? Does that cough mean I’m already sick?”

“It’s Pleasurable” is No Excuse to Smoke

Next is the excuse that smoking is pleasurable – people do it as a treat or reward when they complete a task, or after work, or to celebrate.

I’ll challenge you right now that if I paid for 10 things you would love to do that really ARE rewarding or pleasurable, (a trip to Hawaii, a new car, $1,000 cash, going out to dinner, buying jewelry) I doubt you would list smoking a cigarette.

Lack of Willpower is No Excuse to Smoke

Next is an easy one – the excuse of not having enough willpower to stop.

In emergency rooms all over this country, tens of thousands of people every year get rushed in with a heart attack – and they stop smoking instantly because they finally stop avoiding the truth -- that cigarettes are too dangerous to continue using.

Smoking to Relax is No Excuse

Now I’d like to come to the last excuse people use, and that is that smoking is relaxing. 

When you light up and inhale the smoke, which contains both nicotine and poisons, your body reacts immediately in a rapid attempt to rid itself of the toxins and poisons it’s just detected. This is the exact same physiological reaction your body would have if you took a teaspoon of rat poison. So, it is physically impossible to smoke and relax.

Smoking Does Not Cause Addiction

The habit of smoking has long been compared to an addiction – because like an addiction, it can be very difficult for people to quit on their own. 

The American Medical Association and American Psychological Association both agree that nicotine is not addicting. Some may disagree, but what no one disputes is that nicotine is a stimulant and a powerful toxin. However, if you compare it to something that actually is physically addicting, like alcohol or any of the opiates –you find that the minute the addict’s body metabolizes the last of that substance, 100% of the time they go into physical withdrawal and get very sick.

Addicts withdrawing from addictive drugs experience nausea, diarrhea, intense body pain, tremors, anxiety, muscle cramps, spasms, body chills, a runny nose and probably paranoia. So if you’re addicted to nicotine, you’d experience something like that if you quit.

But have you ever even heard of anyone going through anything like that when they got off cigarettes??? The worst you hear is maybe they are cranky or grumpy for a few days or have a little headache.

And here’s an interesting fact.

At least 72% of all women who smoke and find out they’re pregnant, will quit smoking with little or no difficulties, and not smoke for the rest of the pregnancy. 

Doctors often report patients who have emergency bypass surgery often come out of surgery and quit that day for the rest of their lives.

What could make the pregnant ladies and people being rushed to surgery stop without hesitation, with no side effects, and effortlessly?

Because their subconscious mind had new information that made them realize smoking wasn’t important, and they quit right then. And a big part of our job is to give your subconscious mind the kind of information it needs to help you stop smoking just as easily as they did.

Smoking is a Really Powerful Habit That You Can Break

The good news for you is that unlike an addiction, a habit can be turned off once the subconscious mind decides that it’s not worth it.

So, how is it such a powerful habit? 

Because it’s conditioned, or reinforced every single time you smoke. If you’re a pack a day smoker, do you realize you’re bringing a cigarette up to your mouth 300 times a day???

So after you quit, you can NEVER EVER have a Single PUFF, DRAG or DRAW from a cigarette.

Because if you do, you’ll re-activate the habit, and once you do that, you’ll be right back to smoking. 

What Doesn’t Work

You probably know a lot of people who’ve tried nicotine gum, patches and NRT, which stands for “Nicotine Replacement Therapy.”

According to studies reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association ”The use of NRT for smoking cessation is no longer effective in helping moderate and heavy smokers quit for the long term, and it has no benefit for light smokers.”

And the patch has about a 14% success rate after one year.

Mistaken Ideas About Hypnosis

At this point I want to clear up a few misconceptions about hypnosis. 

I don’t “take control” of your mind, and you won’t be “asleep” – in fact, don’t expect to “feel” much different than you do right this minute except that your eyes will be closed, your body will be more relaxed, and your mind will be more focused. There are no side effects, and you can’t get “stuck” in hypnosis. Another myth is that you’ll be so deeply “under hypnosis” that you’ll be like a zombie or stiff as a board – you can’t move, can’t think. None of this is true.

I have no control over your mind at all. I have absolutely no power to make anyone do anything they don’t want to do. The most I can do is guide your subconscious mind with suggestions, but only if it was where you wanted to go in the first place.

With hypnosis I’ll talk to the subconscious part of your brain and help it understand that it’s not helping you by smoking, and once it gets that, it will be only too happy to turn that habit off, and that’s what makes it so easy to stop. I will remove your desire to smoke.

What does it feel like to be hypnotized?

The answer is it feels just like when you’re very relaxed and day-dreaming.  Most people don’t realize that we actually flip back and forth between our conscious and subconscious mind all the time, every day. Any time you imagine something, or daydream, or even remember something from a long time ago, you’re actually accessing your subconscious mind, and it’s a bit of self-hypnosis.

Dealing with Cravings

Some clients ask: “When I quit before, I had cravings and felt like I wanted a cigarette? If that happens now, why does it happen, and what should I do?” 

The answer is: What you think is a “craving” in reality is just a nagging little voice in your head that keeps reminding you you’re doing something different! There is nothing physical going on.

If you’re like me, I put my pants on right leg first. I do it that way every single time. If I put my left leg in first, it feels weird, and I have a little feeling or “tug” to do it the other way. It doesn’t mean I’m “addicted” to how I put pants on. 

So many things are habitual. It may even be annoying or irritating for a short time when you stop doing a habit like smoking, because you’ve been SO used to doing it – but I can assure you that IF you experience anything that “feels” physical – grumpiness  or irritability, etc. – it’s all just a temporary residual emotional effect of this habit.

Anything that feels like a “craving” or “withdrawal” is just that habit talking to you – reminding you that you’re doing something different. And it will pass very quickly if you simply replace that feeling or any little struggle you might have (and most people don’t have any, by the way) with some other behavior that does what you used to use cigarettes to do. 

For example, if you used cigarettes to relax, what your body is really wanting is the relaxation, not the cigarette, so do something else calming and relaxing. Go for a walk, do some deep breathing, read a book, take a break –anything that will get the job done.

The Power of Self-suggestion

Let’s use the power if self-suggestion to our advantage. Here are your specific instructions in case you have any struggles – even a tiny one.

1. The first things is to focus on how great you feel not smoking. How nice it is to smell good, how much better your coffee or food tastes. Imagine your lungs are repairing themselves, your breathing becoming easier, having more energy, all the things you can enjoy as a non-smoker. Keep those thoughts in your mind and you’ll be surprised how easy it is. The more you focus on those things, the more your unconscious mind will support you.

2. If you have any struggles – and most people do not – then it’s your job to pick something else to do instead of smoking to relax, reward yourself, keep from being bored, or whatever specific thing you used to use smoking to do. Ask yourself, “What am I trying to convince myself this will do for me?” Then it will be easy, because smoking has NEVER EVER satisfied you. They do not solve any problems, they do NOT help you. They never have and they never will.

Make the Change that Could Save Your Life

So, at this point, you should be feeling very positive, optimistic, and maybe already imagining how great you will feel when you stop smoking!

If you’re ready to quit that dangerous, nasty smoking habit, give me a call at 727-612-8164 to make an appointment. It may save your life!

Brian Lynch

About the author

Brian Lynch is a Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist specializing in smoking cessation and weight management.

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