Signs and Symptoms of Stress

stopsmokingToo often we treat the symptoms of stress instead of modifying the cause of the stress. How often do you take a pain reliever and hope that the headache goes away. Do you use antacids on a regular basis? Do you need a drink to help you relax? Do you think of a cigarette each time you feel stressed? These are quick fixes for an underlying problem. Often times the quick fix adds to physical or emotional stress or impairs our ability to deal with the stress in a more productive manner.

Many smokers use their cigarettes as a quick fix. Now that you are a nonsmoker you will need to find another way to deal with your everyday stress. It is important to remember that every crisis will pass with or without a cigarette.

A cigarette won’t change anything. Lighting up and smoking gave you a mental break from whatever was causing you to feel tense. It allowed you to avoid the situation for a short period of time. It may have given you time to calm down or time to think through how you wanted to react. Once you put the cigarette out you still had to deal with the situation.

Now that you recognize this, you CAN deal with any stressful situation by allowing yourself to step back and take a few deep breaths. Take a quick walk around the yard, block, or office while you think about how you want to handle the situation. Remind yourself that you are a nonsmoker. Your body has already begun to heal itself. Look at What Happens When Smokers Quit. Where are you in the healing process? Remind yourself of all the reasons you want to remain a nonsmoker. You are in control. You can choose how you will respond to the stress around you.