Before we light up our first cigarette of the day, how long waiting is long enough? How long are we supposed to wait before we light up? There are no two smokers that will give the same answer. We need to find a time period that is just at our comfort level, or just a little bit outside of our comfort level, and build from there. Some people will want to light up as soon as the alarm rings in the morning and will find that a mere five minutes is more than enough waiting. Others can go on for hours before lighting up. There is no right or wrong length of time, there is too short or too long length of time. To approach this with a preconceived notion of right and wrong is set up for failure, we want to approach this with a learning attitude. We want to find out where our limits are and expand them slowly. Three to five minutes are more than enough for a craving episode to pass. This little piece of golden knowledge is an unknown fact to smokers. Few smokers are conscious of the fact that it takes between three minutes and five minutes from the first thought of smoking a cigarette, to intense unbearable craving and to going back to normal. The craving episode will come pass regardless if we submit to the urge or not. The urge to smoke will pass if we smoke and it will pass if we don’t smoke. The craving episode will pass if we smoke and it will pass if we don’t smoke. One last time, it makes no difference if we give in or not, the craving episode will come to pass. We want to choose a time unit that contains at least one craving episode. We want to experience at least one craving episode without giving in to the urge. We want to practice our ability to say no and our ability to withstand temptation.
Unlike Smoke Cessation systems with huge relapse rates, not only are we allowed to cheat with time limit method, we are encouraged to cheat. Cheating, when moral judgement is removed, is a creative way of achieving the results we desire. Cheating awakens our creative potential to think outside the box. Even the guilt of cheating is a welcome break from the guilt of smoking. All we need to do when cheating with the time limit method, is to be honest with ourselves. Cheating can be sleeping a little longer in the morning to make the time to the first cigarette shorter, and it can be drinking a whole lot of coffee to cope until it’s time for the delayed first cigarette. Taking longer showers in the morning is a great way to cheat and to find our way back to enjoying the pleasures of life that we as smokers so often deny ourselves. When we start to miss out on work or have nervous breakdowns from overdosing on coffee, we need to be honest with ourselves and review our approach. Did we choose a time limit that is too long? Is there extra stress in our lives? We will find along the road that those cheating tricks, such as relaxation, long hot showers and sugar become part of our smoke free selves. We need to find healthy alternatives to smoking that with time will replace smoking. We need to cheat using pleasurable activities for the monkey to make the correct associations between pleasure, health and non-smoking, in order to achieve the best results. Long hot showers are more pleasant than a craving episode, a nice hot cup of tea is more pleasant than nicotine withdrawal, sex so much more satisfying than a coughing fit. We can use NRPs as long as we understand that NRPs only prolong our addiction to nicotine. We can use NRP if we find that not smoking even for a few minutes is absolute hell, knowing that we will eventually need to face purgatory of quitting NRP.