Some smokers already ‘know’ this, because they have heard it said somewhere before. Even so they may find themselves reaching for a cigarette when stress levels go up, and might be puzzled as to why that is when they already know consciously that tobacco isn’t relaxing. I can explain exactly why this is: the Subconscious DOESN’T know… until the hypnotherapist explains it during the therapy session. In fact, the Subconscious has been led to believe the exact opposite over many years of tobacco advertising.
The alarming reality is that nicotine actually causes heart-rate to increase and blood pressure to rise. You might not notice that at the time though, especially if you are already distracted by some annoying stress factor, such as your husband for example. Thanks to him, your heart rate and blood pressure are already rising! The last thing you need is something which will actually drive them higher, but that is exactly what nicotine will do, which is why smoking triggers heart attacks and strokes that would never otherwise happen.
So why the impulse to reach for tobacco? Let me explain what is actually happening. Although a craving feels very much like a need or a desire, it is in fact only an irritating impulse prompting you to reach for a cigarette and light it. If you do not respond you will get another impulse, and they can be pretty annoying so you usually respond quite quickly. The moment you do that, the irritating prompting signal goes away. Notice how you do not have to actually smoke the cigarette and get all the nicotine out of it for that to happen? The signal disappears the moment you light up, which is a relief because it’s an irritating signal. The immediate disappearance of that impulse is also the reason heavy smokers sometimes light up, put the cigarette down in the ashtray and forget all about it, because the impulse is only motivation to light it. Smoking the rest of the cigarette has nothing to do with the craving signal. It is simple habitual repetition and expectation, with no great motivation driving it. The irresistible urge to light up (craving) has already gone by then!As every smoker who has ever tried to stop smoking with willpower alone will tell you, the impulse to reach for tobacco does not come from the conscious mind. The decision to quit was a conscious decision, and willpower is a conscious effort to enforce that decision by bravely resisting the urge to smoke. That urge comes from the Subconscious mind, which has no idea you made a conscious decision to quit. All it knows is that you are apparently not responding to the first prompting impulse, so it sends another, stronger one. And it will keep doing that until you DO respond!
Why is the Subconscious doing that?
I’m glad you asked me that. Perhaps surprisingly, the answer is: tobacco advertising. Yes, I know – it has been banned. So it has gone. Or has it? “Happiness is a cigar called…” “Relax, with a fuller flavour!” Sound familiar? That’s because they didn’t spend millions of pounds every year drilling that into everybody’s Subconscious minds for nothing. So yes, your conscious mind may have been told already that tobacco isn’t really relaxing at all, but if no-one has told your Subconscious mind, it has exactly the opposite idea. Therefore when you become agitated, the Subconscious decides: “We need one of those things that’s going to calm us down!” and sends the signal go and get a cigarette, go and get a cigarette! In fact it isn’t really stress that makes you feel like doing that, it is your Subconscious reaction to stress. And once I explain to your Subconscious mind that actually the tobacco companies were lying to us all along: at stressful moments nicotine is even more likely to cause a heart attack than it normally is, so can we please have those annoying craving signals switched off? …your Subconscious mind will be quite happy to shut them down.
Of course, there are a number of other things I have to explain to the Subconscious as well, but you don’t have to do anything. You spend the whole time lazing about in a comfy chair. You’re not asleep – in fact you feel quite normal really, a bit like when you wake up in the morning but you don’t have to get up. After the session the cravings are gone. No bad moods, no weight gain, no overeating.
If you like the sound of that, read on. Or just call:
Office: 0161-474-8120 Monday-Friday 8.30 a.m. to 6.30 p.m., or call/text Chris directly on 07748 838 644 any day, any time.
Consultant Hypnotherapist Chris Holmes BA(Hons) HPD DipCAH MNCH is a Senior Registered Hypnotherapy Practitioner (General Hypnotherapy Register) and has been providing effective and confidential hypnosis and hypnotherapy services at Central Hypnotherapy for Stockport, Manchester, Tameside and Cheshire since August 2000.