Today is February 27th, 2017.
I quit dipping Copenhagen November 27th, 2016.
I've gone 3 months or 90 days without dip.
Contrary to what I've imagined this moment would be, it is another day. It is another day without dip, however, it is another day of progress. I want to celebrate today, but I'm too busy. I'm too busy living my life and doing the things I want and need to do to get ahead.
And I'll do them all without dip.
I can't tell you all how happy it makes me to know and feel it in my bones that tobacco is not a part of my life anymore. I know that it never will be. I am so much stronger now than on November 27th, 2016. I'm so glad I was strong enough to try to walk away from it that day - it has turned out to be one of the best decisions I've ever made.
Everything has sprung into progressive action once I shook tobacco. I have taken hold of my life and pushed it exactly in the direction I've been wanting it to go all along. I have legitimately gotten into the best shape of my life, I'm happier and healthier than ever, and I'm doing way more with way less. I'm not making excuses for myself anymore, I'm not leaning on tobacco to comfort me, I'm just getting ahead... every chance I can get.
If I had advice for those of you who are scanning these blogs, contemplating your quit, this is the best advice I can give you:
- You must prioritize your quit as your #1 priority for 2 weeks. I'm talking about putting it above your job, your family, your happiness, your friends, your sleep, your exercise, your diet - everything. Your full time job for 2 weeks is to not put tobacco in your lip. Be selfish, be weird, be angry - be whatever you have to be to commit to the quit.
- Significant personal change takes emotional, momentous, and MASSIVE action. Get pissed, quantify what this means to you, do something dramatic and start.
- Take pride in the fact that you are doing something hard, and prepare to use it as a springboard to excel you forward.
- You must hate it. You have to hate dip and what it has done to you. You have to think back to all the planning, the anxiety when you would run out. Your "must-have" trigger times. You have to hate it.
- Most importantly, you must be able to look into your future, objectively, and find where you will fail next and circumnavigate that failure in your head before you get there. You have to already be mentally prepared to say no or get away from the situation, crave, etc. before it shows up. This has been the key to my success and my quit.
Excited about my new life without Copenhagen and the new doors it has opened for me.
Drop me a message or comment - I'd love to share and help others with their quit.
I quit dip on November 27th, 2016.
Today is January 27th, 2017.
I've been dip free for 60 days, or two months.
I honestly can't believe this one, but it is true. I haven't had a dip in 2 months. I feel better than ever. I've replaced my nicotine high fix with daily exercise, and I couldn't be more happy about it. It is what I focus on now. It is my project.
Again, I'll reiterate what I've been saying in these blogs about this journey I've gone on without my close Copenhagen companion: If I can quit here, I will not need it ANYWHERE. Dip is in my past - dead and gone.
I have missed it and will have moments in the future where I'll miss it again, but that is all it ever will be - a memory. I am strong enough to suppress any type of physical or mental crave, by no means is it or will it be worth it to me to give in - even once. I never want to go back to that tiny can that felt like a 2-ton anchor in my pocket.
I'm happy with my decision and I profit from it more and more every day.
I quit dipping Copenhagen on November 27th, 2016.
Today is January 16th, 2017.
I've been dip-free for 50 days.
All is well here gents (and the few and proud worm-dirt pinching gals out there).
Lots going on, haven't thought about dip much at all within the last several days. At this point, its becoming a faded memory.
I ran a half marathon and my fitness is skyrocketing. I'm slowly but surely replacing the time I would spend dipping with exercise. The dopamine release I get from intense exercise is replacing the hole tobacco filled during my dipping days.
I have overpowered dip completely at this point and have all but forgotten about it. I do not want for it, I do not think about it, YET - I am still very cautious about how I will handle things when I return home and am in my own element (as I've mentioned before in my blog). Some of the things I have on my side that will serve as my sword and shield as I face the dip temptation alone when I return are as follows:
1.) I have quit in one of the most prolonged stressful environments I've ever been in.
2.) Since I've quit, my life, health, sleep, relationships, energy, patience, and time management have improved significantly.
3.) I've broken all physical and mental ties to tobacco completely at this point.
4.) I will return home with a quit day count exponentially longer than ever before.
5.) There is absolutely no reason why I could not continue to not use tobacco the rest of my life.
These are my rounds of ammunition if or when any cravings return if I find myself in a weak spot or with my guard down.
What weapon will you reach for when your back is against the wall?
Looking forward to the legendary 100 day club and my Hall of Fame Speech.
"Just keep the stuff out of your mouth."
I quit dipping Copenhagen on November 27th, 2016.
Today is January 5th, 2017.
I've gone 40 days dip free.
I'm a little dumbfounded looking at the number 40 today. It seems wild that 1.) 40 days has passed and 2.) I haven't had a dip in that long. At this point, I believe I'm going to continue to write a weekly blog update here for as long as I can remember and have time to do so. Posting these blogs has been fairly therapeutic for me. The early posts were very hard for me to write because I was committing to this thing that my mind and body really wanted to get away from.
The longer I went, and the more time I put in between myself and the can, the more meaningful these blog posts became. They've become my quit story. They've been sewn together with tough times. Looking back at the first blog entries today, I remember how hard I had to work to mentally override the deeply-rooted cravings through the intense withdrawal phase. I was miserable. For even just that reason alone, I don't want to go through that again.
I'm 40 days quit and I'm not going through that anymore. I don't think about it, I just live my life and do what I please. Sure, a craving will show up randomly, but I smash it within a second or less. I do not let it linger, I override it and change my train of thought instantly. The cravings are becoming more petty with time. At this point, they are a joke. They continue to show up (maybe one every other day), but I am much too strong now to let them affect me.
Talk to y'all in a week,
I quit dipping Copenhagen on November 27th, 2016.
Today is December 28th, 2016; I've gone 31 days dip-free.
I have been very busy lately, not much time to write a blog update. I have some time this morning and thought I would catch up.
Overall, I'm doing wonderful without dip. The words "dip" or "Copenhagen" make me mad. They frustrate me because of the hold they had of me; and the long-term lingering of the cravings tobacco, nicotine and smokeless tobacco have on me. I hate it.
I still get cravings once in a while; they are usually predictable. They still irritate the hell out of me though. I know I'm going through a bout with a craving, yet, it makes me mad that the instance even exists. I want dip (for a few tough seconds) and I'm aware enough that I hate that I want it.
I'm still trying to prepare my mind for when I return home from this deployment and I have access to all my normal things and my normal system. (i.e. stop at the convenience store on the way to work to grab a can for the drive) I think if I anticipate it enough here and bash it into my head that in no way, shape or form can that happen, I'll be prepped for it when it happens. Trying to be realistic.
The benefits are great, the best part is not having to constantly work a "dip plan" (I've got enough plans to worry about.)
I've logged some significantly stressful situations while quitting and off of dip, which in turn gives me power. I could have caved a number of times, but I didn't do it, even under high stress. That is why I believe this quit may be my last. I'm happy without it, and I clearly don't need it. I just want it... sometimes.
A month is something to be proud of at this point. I was more excited to log a month dip free than I was for Christmas, and that is God's honest truth. That is the present I gave myself: self-discipline and raw will.
Y'all feel free to comment and/or message me about this stuff, would love to talk to you fellow quitters. I hope my blog entries are doing some good for someone else going through this.
I quit dipping Copenhagen on November 27th, 2016.
Today is December 15th, 2016.
I've been quit for 18 days.
When I quit 18 days ago, I anticipated this being extremely hard - and it was. But every single day I log, it gets easier. The further I distance myself from the can, the less and less I remember it. I feel more powerful having a grip on my addiction. I overpowered one of the strongest addictions known to man, and all I have to do is not put it in my mouth. For those listening and so that I can talk through this process, this is what would happen if I went back to dip:
1.) I would have to shamelessly go buy a can.
2.) I would have to put my first dip in in a while. It would burn because my mouth is completely healed and un-calloused at this point.
3.) I would feel no sensation or buzz and it would be a true let down (I've been here before).
4.) I would have to face the music of being a failure to myself after turning back to it.
5.) I would have to make the decision to keep dipping or start a quit counter all over again at that point.
6.) I would have subconsciously let down all whom I've told about my quit (which is a large list at this point).
7.) All my mental strength I've gained from this quit would be dumped and ruined with one pinch of tobacco.
That doesn't sound like a process I'd like to go through anytime soon. When you get into the tax of it all, the pros of quitting outweigh the cons tenfold. Its extremely hard to see that until you quit. Now, I'm honest, and I've been honest throughout writing this blog. I get a cravings still after 18 days; 2-3 times a day. One pronounced craving after dinner, like clockwork. I still have to fight it every night. It lasts about 30 seconds and its fairly strong. I won't ever let it beat me though. A can of Copenhagen, or even a deeply rooted addiction vehicle such as nicotine will not keep me from my quit. This quit is mine and I am in control of my life.
One day I didn't want to dip anymore.
So I stopped.
And I'm never starting again.
It takes 21 days to make a habit. I'm on day 18. Talk to y'all in 3 days when I've got one of the best habits known to mankind; non-tobacco user.
I quit Copenhagen November 27th, 2016.
Today is December 8th, 2016.
I've been quit for 11 days.
The last few days have been great. The more time I put in between myself and the can, the more power I feel I have over it. I have almost completely severed the nicotine addiction, which feels incredible (this took about 4-5 days).
I feel like I don't have an anchor tied to me anymore. I don't have to worry about "dip logistics". I don't have to worry about paying for a can or a log - its just something I don't even buy anymore. I've already saved around $50 in this short period of time. I cannot stress how incredibly fast my mouth has turned around in 11 days. My teeth are incredibly whiter and healthier, my gums are back to normal (after 10 years!) I do have some recession on my gums, but they look a lot better today than it did 10 days ago.
Now, with all the positive, I will say this: I have to still monitor the triggers; I am not naïve. These are my triggers:
1.) After a meal (specifically dinner).
2.) Boredom / time alone
3.) Driving (haven't had to face this one yet since I'm deployed)
4.) Watching a movie (another one I'll have to stare down when I get back to the states)
5.) After a workout (I've done well here)
6.) While drinking beer (Again, another one I'll have to face when I return home)
7.) While doing yard work / manual labor
8.) On the golf course
I have to stay on track. I think the more time I log off dip, the harder it will be for me to go back to it. The extreme test for me will be when I return home to the states and I'm driving down I-35 in my truck or when I'm having a few beers at the house, or when I'm on the golf course with my dipping buddies.
I have to continue to hate it, and associate it with the most disgusting, grotesque thing I can imagine. I really enjoy being free from it right now.
Hang in there,
I quit dip on November 27th, 2016.
Today is December 6th, 2016.
This entry will summarize quit days 6-9 which were December 3rd-6th.
I feel great. I feel as if I have shaken the nicotine grip that was around my mind and throat - demanding me to think about and want dip. I do not have urges or physiological symptoms whatsoever. No lip twitch, no waking up in the middle of the night, no tonguing my gums/lip, no nothing. The beautiful thing is that I made it through the withdrawal phase of quitting in a high-stress, busy environment.
I was worthless for those days, but now that I am through the woods - my mind doesn't have a SECOND to think and/or fantasize about dip. My mind cannot change itself back - I've made a decision and that's what we're rolling with, ZERO EXCEPTIONS. I'm so busy that it doesn't even cross my mind. I am surrounded by dippers - and it doesn't phase me. I'm so convicted that I've written dip off in my brain as "something I did in the past".
My oral health has turned completely around. My mouth feels great. My gums and bottom teeth have completely cleaned up and look very healthy. Morning is when you make your money quitting dip. Your mouth just feels brand new.
My general health is great too. My resting heart rate is 42 beats per minute.
Feeling extremely relieved to get through (what I assume to be) the toughest part of the quit. I feel stronger every day I put behind me.
I quit dip November 27th, 2016
Day 4 was December 1st, 2016; and Day 5 was the subsequent 2nd of December.
Day 4 was pretty smooth. I was very busy yesterday - to the point in which I couldn't get people out of my office to catch up. I was busy enough to not find room to write a blog entry.
Everything was going very well; until I was prepping/packing for an upcoming event.
I encountered the hardest crave-attack I've ever experienced last night. It was overwhelming. My body and mind we screaming in unison to throw my decision to quit away at all costs and finally put a dip in once and for all.
My stress levels were high, but I fought it off. I was pacing and sweating and extremely uncomfortable. It finally began to subside and I went to sleep.
Today has been incredible (Day 5). I feel like I'm gaining mental control back and the physical withdrawals are starting to fade. My lip and mouth muscles are not twitching hardly at all anymore. This is the first morning I've woken up and not immediately thought about and/or felt the strong urge to put a dip in. I got up, brushed my teeth, and started my day (with a toothpick in, of course.)
I'm starting to develop a physical and mental HATE for smokeless tobacco.
Its crazy what my brain is doing because part of me feels like a good friend of mine that has kept me company for a long time has DIED, and it makes me sad.
But the other half of me loathes the idea of dipping altogether. The can, the dirtiness of it, the trail of dip I left everywhere, the lesions on my gums, the hard dependency, the planning I had to do when I was on the run, around family, etc., the "sick" cycle where I would be sick enough to not dip, but as soon as I was well, I jumped back into it, the dip ALL OVER my truck/vehicles, the anxiety I would have when I didn't have a can ready to go off the last pinch, the receding gums in the mirror and many more circumstances.
Dipping was fun, and I enjoyed it - but that was something I used to do. Its a dirty habit meant for someone else. I'm smart enough and tough enough to leave that behind. I'm clawing my way out of the woods and I can see the end of the treeline ahead. I still have obstacles; but I can see them. I'm planning on negotiating them, and I am anticipating them. Sure, a snake could come up, unforeseen. But the closer I get to the treeline, the stronger I become. As many POWs will say: "1,000 days of evasion are better that 1 day of captivity." Tobacco shackles you up, throws your ass in a box and throws away the key.
I also got a chance to (inadvertently) talk to a behavioral health psychologist - for those of you tuned in, years of behavioral health and psychological research went behind what I'm going to tell you here.
I told him what I was trying to do, and he empathized with my decision and approach SIGNIFICANTLY. He told me these important things about quitting tobacco:
1.) It is comparable to coming off of a severe cocaine addiction. Nicotine addiction is substantially stronger than a heroine addiction. (So, pat yourselves on the back - we are going through withdrawals (and trying to stay sane) similar to those coming off of heroine and cocaine).
2.) 2 weeks. Get to 2 weeks. Fight your ass off to get to 2 weeks quit. After that, your success rate goes up exponentially.
3.) This phrase: "You can quit, but you'll still want it your whole life." is garbage. Don't listen to it. You have to hate dip; you have to rearrange your thoughts, feelings and emotions about dip - you have to associate dip with the most repulsive, horrible thing you can imagine. You'll never want it again.
4.) Keep going and keep talking about it. There are people all around you that will help - put them to work.
Quit on, guys!
I quit Copenhagen on November 27th, 2016.
Today is November 30th, 2016.
I'm feeling much better today with everything. This has become a profoundly testing and religious experience for me - full of divine intervention.
I've heard stories of death, heartache, extreme strife, pain and resiliency. These stories have barged into my life randomly, without reference and with incredible application.
I can't explain this, but I must continue to run with it. I'm beginning to not have the physiological urge to want to dip every 10-15 seconds... it is starting to fade by the opposing good feeling and thought of breaking free from this addiction.
My bottom lip is continuing to twitch every 30 seconds or so throughout the day. I have to physically intervene for it to stop. It is a reminder to me of how terrible I've been to myself and my oral health by choosing to dip Copenhagen for the last 10 years.
I'm beginning to be able to focus on work holistically again. I can hold a train of thought and conversation without feeling sorry for myself and/or thinking about dip.
Last night was awful, again. I woke up every hour on the hour until 0300AM. I woke up tonguing my gums and bottom lip, dreaming/thinking about dip.
I'm very much looking forward to the physiological symptoms to pass. Once I get through this phase, it will be an attempt to forget.
Thankful for toothpicks and gum right now.
Its day two for me walking away from Copenhagen. It was really hard for me to muster up the stones to write this entry.
Feeling pretty defeated today. I feel defeated in the fact that I've been worn down by taking tobacco out of my life. I'm so dependent on it. Its like someone took my pacifier away and I'm being a baby.
I've thought about it all day, roughly every 10-15 seconds. My bottom lip is twitching.
I woke up last night 3 times thinking and dreaming about Copenhagen. I've been off of it for around 50 hours now.
I've been an asshole to everyone that has walked in my office today, I'm seeing red and I feel weak.
My exercise has increased - to the point where I was deadlifting so much weight and so many reps this morning that I looked down and my hands were covered in blood from ripping them up on the bar - I didn't even notice.
I think I might be losing my noodle a little bit. Copenhagen - you have really screwed me up.
I'm trying to drink coffee and chew gum to keep the flow of things going.
I really enjoy reading other quitters' posts on here - what people are typing feels very familiar - I feel like I know you guys.
The things that are keeping me strong are the fact that I know in my heart and soul that I need to be tougher, meaner and more longstanding than a can of tobacco. Someone typed in one of the posted articles here "JUST DON'T PUT IT IN YOUR MOUTH." I've repeated that phrase over and over and over again the last 2 days. So simple, yet so profound. Many people have died because they couldn't "not put it in their mouth."
I intend to live and see my children, grow old with my wife, and have unlimited success. Dip does not fit in that family photo.
Hanging on for another day.
I am Chip.
I have no business dipping Copenhagen, but I have for 10 years to the nose.
I'm 27. I began smoking in high-school and quickly transitioned to sweet Copenhagen Long Cut and Wintergreen within the first year of trying smoking. I tried it and I've had a can within arms reach ever since (basically).
I've been in the military since 2008, and have always dipped. I have a dip can pocket on my uniform.
I have quit twice. I quit during an Army school in 2012 (which I could legitimately not have tobacco, not authorized.) This lasted about 30 days; after the school was over - I was coaching myself to not go back, I didn't make it home before I broke down and stopped at a gas station and picked up a can. It was a let down. No buzz, nothing special about it, but it didn't stop me.
I would continue to dip until mid-2014, where I tried to quit again. I was much more successful the second time. I was home with my wife and had a little more control over my life and it was my decision for dip to be thrown out of the picture.
3 months. Things were great. My health was top notch. I thought I was out of the woods... hadn't thought about having a dip in awhile. Threw it all away one night I drank a few beers and snuck out of my own house to buy a can of dip down the street (disgusted). Same story, it was a let down, but I continued on.
So here I am. Thanksgiving 2016. I'm deployed. And I now feel like its time for me to quit (again).
Something profound happened to me recently, I think. I re-watched the movie "127 Hours". I can relate to being trapped and having no control over my personal freedom and/or decisions ON THE LOWEST LEVEL. I've never had my arm pinned to a wall at the bottom of a canyon, but I've been to US ARMY SERE, and I've dipped Copenhagen for 10 years.
There is a scene in this movie where he is on this psychological see-saw where he is beginning to make the decision to leave his arm behind, or die.
I have no children, and I very much want to have children with my wife when I return from this deployment. At this point in the movie, Aaron (the main character) looks through a hazy crack in the wall and sees his unborn son, that does not exist yet. His son is a toddler, and is sitting on a couch looking back at his father, with an expression that insinuates "Dad, are you going to do something? I'll never exist if you just die."
Kind of got to me, not to mention, my sweet wife has been so patient with me over the years. Even I think its a gross habit - I mean, I wouldn't kiss me. She must really love me.
I'm ready to quit. Dipping just doesn't fit into my profile anymore. I'm ready to be a professional that does not have a weakness. I'm ready to be so incredibly mentally and physically fit that I can compete in races and lifting competitions regularly. I'm ready to be the best and most wonderful version of myself.
I've quit twice, and failed quitting twice.
I gave up dip yesterday, 27 NOV 16, and I pray God gives me the strength to hold on through these first 100 days.