Mick (Pat’s Friend)
P: Howsaboutyeh? Good to see you Mick.
M: Good to see you too Pat; what’s happening?
P: Busy enough, just getting used to this new technique for helping people stop smoking.
M: Oh yeah, I’d love to give up the tabs. What’s it all about?
M: Yeah, you know, Harry Rags, fags, smokes. Cigarettes okay!
P: Right, now I get you, just wanted to make sure we are talking about the same thing. Well I was at a hypnotherapy workshop recently and I was working with an experienced therapist who specialises in helping people stop smoking.
M: Workshop! What did you make? No wait, don’t tell me, let me guess – using the latest Nano technology you made a miniature replica of the smoker who lives in the smoker’s ear. Every time the smoker reaches for the cigarettes, the small replica pops out and gives yer man a few slaps and a good ticking off for being a stupid Muppet?
P: Lives in his ear?
M: Well his nose then. No wait, his mouth, yeah that would make more sense.
P: Make more sense. How do you work that out?
M: His brain, that’s it – you implant the replica directly into the brain, so when yer man thinks about having a smoke the miniature replica pushes a few buttons and before you can say, “20 Marlboro lights”, neurotransmitter messages go flying around yer man’s body reminding him he is not a smoker so should just stop thinking about the smokes and walk away.
P: Have you been watching that late night science fiction channel again?
M: Yeah, how did you know that?
P: Hmmm. Well you might be surprised to hear that you are not too far off the mark.
M: Really? You made a miniature replica…
P: No Mick just pause a minute, take a deep breath and relax and I’ll try to explain it to you.
M: Will there be subtitles for the hard of thinking?
P: I’ll keep it simple. So listen up my friend and you might just stop smoking before you know it.
P: Most smokers have experienced it more than once. Several weeks down the road to quitting for good, then… one slip and all that effort squandered. All those plans and efforts gone in an instance literally up in smoke. Then of course you find yourself making up the most exceptionally creative reasons for why it’s OK to have ‘just that one’.
M: Well I know what you’re saying there. I’ve bought apples off that cart myself.
P: Cigarettes surely?
M: Obviously cigarettes, it’s only a saying; as well you know I hate apples.
P: Apples are actually good for smokers and former smokers alike as they can assist with cutting the risk of developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
M: So you are a greengrocer now? An apple a day keeps the hypnotherapist away!
P: I’m sure you would appreciate any help in giving up smoking and if by eating an apple a day keeps you away from me then that can’t be a bad thing, now can it?
M: I’m not sure how to take that.
P: As I was saying… everytime you have that “one” cigarette when your stressed out or having a few drinks or whenever it is you really need to have that “one” you can easily justify it to yourself because addiction is a smart cookie that works at an unconscious level.
M: Mm mm Cookies…
P: Mick I’m dealing with cigarette cravings not food remember? Although if you want to call back at another time I’m sure we can run through weight management.
M: Are you saying I’m fat?
P: Not at all, I’m sure you could still fit into your Communion suit.
M: Still got the money as well…
P: Anyway. So you can have all the will power in the world, but when you are at a ‘low’ point, addiction then strikes.
M: So how can I stay stopped?
P: Firstly you have to want to stop, I’m serious here, don’t waste your time or money if you are not ready to walk out my door, after a “stop smoking” session, a non-smoker.
M: Okay easy tiger I’m sure nobody wants to waste their time and money if they are not committed to quitting smoking.
P: You would be surprised how many people come to my office smelling of cigarettes, and a pack of cigarettes still in their pocket or handbag.
M: Oh come on Pat even the condemned man is entitled to a last cigarette.
P: Well it’s fair to say that at least that cigarette won’t kill him. But I’m not dealing with condemned men I’m dealing with people who want to live and live as non-smokers.
M: You a have a point there I guess.
P: You see if you decide to be a non-smoker then you have to commit to action. That is action to do something different, because if you keep doing what you always did then you will get the same results. Too many smokers try to quit but only at a conscious level.
P: Yeah they give up smoking but still crave a cigarette. So when they wake up in the morning or have that cup of coffee or have a few drinks they are always resisting temptation. Indeed there are numerous ways to try to quit smoking – pills, patches, gums, quit telephone lines and advertising to beat the band. However these don’t target the unconscious mind, so deep down at an unconscious level they are still a smoker.
M: Unconscious? What are talking about? Do you have to be knocked out to give up smoking?
P: No. Remember when you were talking about the little man inside your head, pushing buttons telling you you are non-smoker, well there is a part of “You” inside you. As the only voice you hear in your mind is your own. A non-smoker doesn’t have to resist smoking as deep inside them they are programmed not to smoke.
M: So if I want to give up smoking I have to get my inner voice to tell me I no longer smoke?
P: Through hypnosis you can uncap that powerhouse of emotions, memories, feelings and reprogram your inner mind. You no longer smoke and you don’t even want to smoke. You are a non-smoker. Just imagine not being controlled by the need to smoke. You no longer have to worry about having enough smokes. You no longer have to run outside at work, the pub, the restaurant just to stand in the pouring rain, the freezing cold to have that “one”. I mean would you do that if you didn’t smoke?
M: Are you serious or what? I hate having to go outside for a cigarette.
P: Well stay inside and focus on living your life free from cigarettes.
M: Okay Pat so obviously hypnosis is your thing but I’m not into the “swinging pendulum, look in to my eyes, you are feeling very sleepy hocus pocus”.
P: Mick come on you have known me long enough to know hypnosis is really just deep relaxation and you are fully aware of what is going on around you but you are more interested in what is going on inside you.
M: So how come at these hypnosis shows, yer man has people eating onions as if they were apples and get them to bark like a dog when they hear the word “Rover”.
P: Remember all hypnosis is self-hypnosis. The only voice you hear is your own.
M: Unless you’re bonkers.
M: Oh come on Pat don’t go all “la day dah politically correct” on me. The World is full of nutters who commit atrocities because of the “voices” in their head.
P: Yes and these people are in need of psychiatric treatment. I am referring to ordinary “Joe/Josephine Public” who want to give up smoking not someone who blows up half the neighbourhood because the local shop has run out of baked beans.
M: Yeah ok smarty. If all hypnosis is self-hypnosis then, with all due respect, what do I need you for?
P: Well you need me to guide you through the journey to your goal.
M: Are you up for election or what? That is a politician’s answer if ever I’ve heard one.
P: Okay Pat let me put it this way. Do you remember when you were learning to drive and you started off with an instructor beside you…
M: Please don’t remind me– Frankie the chain smoking Elvis lookalike.
P: Well, be that as it may but he was there to support and escort you through the goal of learning to drive.
M: No it wasn’t an escort, a red three door fiesta if I’m not mistaken.
P: Oh Mick, please. I am like you’re driving instructor, no not a chain smoking Elvis lookalike; moreover I am helping you through the steps of learning a new process and reprogramming your mind at an unconscious level. I mean I bet when you started to drive you were thinking all the time about checking your mirrors and looking at the gear stick to see what gear you were in. But now you can arrive at your destination without remembering what route you took.
M: Yes it’s like the car knows where it is going and it drives itself.
P: Well that is why you come and see me to give up cigarettes. I teach you how to master this new process and give you the skills to continue on your own through – self-hypnosis.
M: And become an ex-smoker?
P: Well you don’t call yourself an ex learner driver so you are not an ex-smoker you are just like someone who does not smoke. You are a non-smoker.
M: A non-smoker. I like the sound of that.
P: Yes, it does sound good.
M: Here that’s all fine and dandy but you know I’m busy ducking and diving, bobbing and a weaving…
P: Quite, it must be difficult holding down four jobs!
M: Four jobs, what you talking about? No I mean I don’t have time to come and be tranced out to the magic that is Pat’s hypnotic voice so what can you do for me, if I cannot make it to your gaff?
P: Gaff, really, it’s a proper room designed for natural relaxation.
M: Well okay respect to you on that front but I can’t get there what can you do for me?
P: Well I can give you some exercises and techniques, which are designed to develop awareness and through experiential phenomenon understand just what it would be like, as if you were really with me.
M: You know English is my first language, right.
P: Forgive me Pat, basically, it is notes on how to relax, breathe and learn how to induce self-hypnosis. By learning these techniques you can reach your inner self, that “little person” in your mind and instruct him to “press a few buttons” which will make you feel and see yourself as someone who does not smoke.
M: See I told you it was all about the miniature dude in yer head.
P: So you did Pat, so you did.
M: Right so, can I have them or what?
P: I will send them on to you. But better still, choose to make an appointment to come and see me and make the changes in your life that you want for the benefits to your health and wealth. Who knows it might just be the best decision you ever make…
researchers at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands reported smokers eating moderate amounts of fruits and vegetables, particularly apples, halved their risk of developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a common lung ailment among smokers.