It’s official, I have (for the second time in the last 4 years) stopped smoking. While the last attempt involved tremendous amounts of self-re-programming and will enforcement, this time around it’s proving to be less difficult. Conditions are just as difficult as before, including a partner and 75% of my peers who smoke frequently and passionately.

The trick seems to be simple.

Daily hatha yoga practice has strengthened my will and given me a different insight into breath observation and breath control than mindfulness of breath, which I have been practicing on and off for the past 2 years. Consequently, I didn’t feel the need or wish to smoke during the day, only the most powerful triggers and routines pushed the right (wrong) buttons and reminded me of the addiction in the evening. And even then, I didn’t enjoy it as much as I used to. The added insight into the effects of smoking on anxiety (anxiety makes you light up, the physical side-effects of the cigarette, ie. faster heart rate, make you more anxious) have made the decision even simpler.

So if you want to stop smoking start playing with your breath and build-up that will one step at a time.