My third critical tool was Ben and Jerry's ice cream. Early on, the most powerful urges to smoke hit around 10:30 at night. Instead of reaching for a cigarette, I'd reach for the car keys, drive to the store, and buy a carton of Stephen Colbert's AmeriCone Dream ice cream. I'd go home, dip in, and eat every last spoonful. Once I did this three nights running; now I only do it every couple of weeks. You may call this gluttony, but I call it indulgence, knowing ice cream is less addictive than nicotine.The captain explained that once a decision was made about where to stop each night, we'd stick with it. He said, "Sometimes when you're out on the water, you get to thinking there's a better way. It's a pretty day, or you've made really good time, and you start to think you can skip the harbor where you planned to spend the night and go a little further up the coast. Do you know what to do in that case?""No. It's still too hard," I replied. But here's what I didn't say, the really crucial thing to remember about quitting smoking. Once upon a time I was an ordained minister. I pastored a church for three years and in that time, conducted funerals for a number of lovely people, young and old. From my observations back then, I can guarantee you that no matter how hard it is for me - or for you, for that matter - to quit smoking, it's far easier than dying.
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