GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. If you are quitting or thinking of quitting, please -- join us! We kindly ask that politics be left out.
You can also click the GUS tag to view all diary posts, or access the GUS Library at dKosopedia for a great list of stop-smoking links. Check it out! Want to make sure you never miss us? Follow (♥) the GUS tag to keep GUS in your Stream and easily find the link to the latest one. It's just that easy!
A message to ALL quitters: You don't have to avoid GUS if you have a failed quit. We won't give you a bad time or nag you. We consider the failed quits as "practice" for the real quit.
It's easy to get sideswiped by the big stuff, those major life challenges that leave us wondering how we will ever cope and convince us happiness is both a long time off and far, far away. People get that. They understand, even sympathize.
It's harder to remember sometimes that it's the little stuff that gets us down, more often that not. It's amazing how quickly an okay day can take a nosedive, the sun can hide behind a looming cloud, and our sense of fun up and deserts us when we are forced to confront the irritating minutia of life: interactions with negative people, a trying day at work, that dreaded appointment, a stack of bills, a bad hair day or an outfit that isn't working, rude drivers, bad weather, sucky people on the internet, or even those small, internal frustrations we have about our own behaviors and responses.
I frequently see these little aphorisms and sayings floating around the internet, especially on social media sites like Facebook and Pinterest. They are so widely shared, I think, because they strike a chord with such a wide variety of people (with an equally wide variety of circumstances, temperaments, and coping skills): we nod our heads when we see stuff like that because we get it. We understand. We recognize it in others and we know how it feels, personally.Don't let stupid little things break your happiness.
Take that one. I not only nodded in recognition (and "Liked" it, and Pinned it), but it got me thinking about how often we allow small, unpleasant experiences to color our whole day (or even longer, a process that ends up resembling one of those snowballs rolling downhill, getting bigger and nastier and covered with gnarly-looking debris as it goes on). Recognizing the kind of control we have over our own responses to things is a critical part of the process of behavioral change. Our lives don't have to be the snowball.
In the last GUS diary, a community member mentioned how they'd had a moment of backsliding during a particularly stressful encounter. The slip was temporary, in large part I think due to their mindful---and impressively quick!---response to the incident. They recognized the reasons for the slip (stressful interaction, with a side order of misplaced nostalgia) and more importantly, figured out that the initial response (smoking) was not helpful or productive. They're already back on track.
Sometimes all it takes is a little nudge to get you back on track. Taking a small respite from the grind or the things that are getting you down can change your whole day. I had made plans to meet my sister for coffee last Sunday. We've both had stressful weeks, and wanted to unwind for a bit in a fancy little coffee shop she likes for their vegan baked goods and excellent coffee.
Well, after making the trip there, the place we chose turned out to be closed. We had a 30-second moment of "WTF, Universe? Was it something we said?" and then we made a conscious decision to just move on. That resulted in our ending up at a great little Mom & Pop style doughnut shop with tasty treats, low prices, childhood tunes on the PA, and an hour of focusing on the good stuff instead of the bad. That conscious little "Happiness Break" really helped.
These breaks---and the things that bring us relief, or happiness, or just a simple moment where we don't focus on the things that are bringing us down---don't have to be elaborate affairs. It can be as simple as a quick cup of coffee (or a nightly glass of wine), playing a song or game you like, remembering to stretch and take a few deep breaths, spritzing yourself with perfume, playing with your critters, taking a few minutes to peruse Pinterest or the happy fun time-suck website of your choice, playing a video of cute animals (thanks effervescent!) or even spending a little while connecting with your friends, family, or community...and remember, GUS counts!
What's your happiness break?
If you go to Google Translate and type in “pv zk bschk pv zk pv bschk zk pv zk bschk pv zk pv bschk zk bschk pv bschk bschk pv kkkkkkkkkk bschk” from English to German and press the listen button, it’ll beatbox. Or just click this link and click the little sound icon on the right, which says "Beatbox" when you mouse over it. (make sure your speakers are turned on).
You have dealt with so much and done the best that you can.
Take a moment to appreciate how strong you are.
(This song is much better if you imagine Bert from Sesame Street on lead vocals.)
Who's Your Li'l Buddy?
1BQ, 3rdGenFeminist, A Man Called Gloom, Abra Crabcakeya, Actbriniel, addisnana, AfroPonix, aishmael, Alise, Alpha99, ambeeeant, American in Kathmandu, amk for obama, andsarahtoo, angry marmot, Anne933, anodnhajo, aoeu, AoT, aquarius2001, arcadesproject, Archie2227, arodb, Arthur Wolf (in memoriam), assyrian64, Aunt Acid, awkawk, b4uknowit, bamablue, BARAKABETH, barnowl, b barrie, bdizz, beatpanda, beefydaddy18, BFSkinner, bgblcklab1, BigAlinWashSt, Bike Crash, BirderWitch, BJKay, bleeding heart, blingbling65, blue husky, Blue Intrigue, bluedust, BluejayRN, BlueJessamine, Bluerall, bluestatedem84, BoiseBlue, boudi08, Brahman Colorado, breedlovinit, BrenP, BrianParker14, Bronxist, BrowniesAreGood, bsmechanic, buddabelly, bumbi, BusyinCA, cactusgal, Carol in San Antonio, CathiefromCanada, CathodeRay, CDH in Brooklyn, cee4, Cen Den, ChocolateChris, ChurchofBruce, ciganka, cinnamondog, citizenx, ClapClapSnap, claude, Cleante, Code Monkey, codobus, Coldblue Steele, Colorado is the Shiznit, coloradomomma, common green, commonmass, Common Sense Mainer, congenitalefty, coppercelt, dadanation, dangoch, DarienComp, dauber, Dauphin, Dave in AZ, Dave in Northridge, David54, deedogg, demkat620, Dexter, Diana in NoVa, Dickie, DiegoUK, Dingodude, dirtdude, distraught, djMikulec, docreed2003, dolfin66, donnamarie, Donna O, dotsright, Dr Teeth, DRo, droogie6655321, Dube, duckhunter, Eclectablog, Eddie C, EdgedInBlue, effervescent, elbamash, El barragas, el vasco, entrelac, ericlewis0, Everest42, Ex Con, ezdidit, fhamme, Fineena, fiona2, fishhawk, Flea, flumptytail, Friend of the court, fritzi56, FrugalGranny, Garrett, Gator, 2ɹǝɔnɐɥɔb, GDbot, Geiiga, GenXangster, glorificus, glpaul, gooderservice, gooners, gravlax, GreenMountainBoy02 (in memoriam), greylox, grndrush (in memoriam), GrumpyWarriorPoet, GulfExpat, gzodik, Haole in Hawaii, HappyinNM, henlesloop, here4tehbeer, HeyMikey, hideinplainsight, High Tide, hiliner68, history first, hold tight, Hugh Jim Bissell, hulibow, I love 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wolfie1818, Wordsinthewind, Wreck Smurfy, x, xopher, yet another liberal, Zotz
Have you had some experience with the effects of smoking, and want to write a GUS diary or host an open thread? Please sign up in the Butt Can (Tip Jar), and name the day and time that works for you (AM, PM, late-night, early-bird...). Weekly GUS Diary Schedule (regular diarists featured in bold) is below. And look at all those open slots just calling your name!
Wed PM: Vacationland (Whoomp! There it is.)If you can spare a few hours, please consider hosting GUS - doesn't have to be a permanent slot; it can be a one-time deal or just an open thread!
Thu AM: Open
Thu PM: Open
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Fri PM: Open
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Sat PM: Open
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Sun PM: Open
Mon AM: paulitics
Mon PM: Open
Tue AM: gchaucer2
Tue PM: Open
Wed AM: Open
Not sure where to start? Just ask for help in the Butt Can (Tip Jar). Seriously, it doesn't have to include specific elements or require all sorts of fabulous diary formatting skills. The regulars will make sure stuff gets carried over from diary to diary, so if you want to just tell your story or provide an open thread and host for a few hours, that's cool too. We would be ever so grateful, truly!