πŸ”₯ [NO SMOKING] πŸ”₯ 1 year - 1 month - 14 days - (and counting)



"I can't breathe..."

Each day, it seemed as though my lungs were more labored than the last. The weight planted firmly on my chest seemed to follow me everywhere I went.

Can you imagine not being able to take a full breath?

You writhe for just one satisfying pull of precious air - but it doesn't come.

You even try pressing all the air from your lungs hoping you can give yourself the illusion of taking a full breath. You make a "huuueeeeeyyyyy" sound, as you wheeze out every ounce of air from your body.

It works a little - but not enough. You're starving for air. Thirsting for it. Longing for it.

Yes... it's all around you.

But somehow, it's out of reach.

This is where I was a couple years back

cig in hand.png

I smoked cigarettes and was diagnosed with COPD by a doctor that I wrote off immediately as a lunatic.

"Whatever... I can still outrun most people my age..." I thought to myself, trying to stack up proof against the unwelcome news.

I mean, come on... I was 30 years old and in pretty decent shape, right? Nevertheless, that erroneous doc said I needed to quit smoking.

And at first, I didn't listen. I continued along my path of self-destruction as if nothing had been said.

But after a few months, I began to notice that my regular breathing was becoming a daily struggle. And I'm not talking about "walking up the hill" breathing... I'm talking about "just sitting at the computer desk doing nothing" breathing.

And can I tell you something?

When it's hard to breathe just sitting there - things start feeling a little dicey.

"What if I never got another full breath?"

terror pic.png

I'm sure this question popped into my head hundreds of times in the days before My Decision. And yet, I still persisted to put those blasted cigarettes in my mouth - one after another.

My daily itinerary looked like this:

  • Wake up: need a cigarette...
  • Cup of coffee: need a cigarette...
  • In the car: need a cigarette...
  • Write ANYTHING: need 10 cigarettes + 3 cups of coffee...
  • Social setting: go outside - smoke a cigarette and pretend I'm not agoraphobic...
  • After sex: need a cigarette...

...and the list goes on.

If you've been a long-term smoker, this may sound all too familiar.

Something had to change...


Sometime around June 2020, I began to take inventory of my thought processes. There were so many changes happening in my life, I needed to relearn how to focus and get on track.

I wanted to take command over the things in my life rather than be ruled by them. And as I thought of my future health and struggled in my seat to breathe - smoking became a target.

And that's when My Decisions happened.

My Decision...


I decided.

Quitting smoking was a mountain I wanted to climb - a dragon I wanted to conquer.

And the need to succeed was expedient.

Each day of failure was another step closer to reduced lung function. One day, that wouldn't just mean no more running or hiking in the outdoors...

It would mean never being satisfied with the air I need to live.

So, I started my journey to quit. And I posted about it on June 1st, 2020. My post (which was a rather 'click-batey' piece called A Familiar Bondage), explained that I was going to try using a new method for dissecting my own operating system (brain) to produce a desired outcome (behavioral change).

And guess what?

I failed...


And because I failed... I didn't post again for a while. After all, I was a bit embarrassed at my own lack of ability to control my behavior.

I was so sure I had it. But like many smokers before me and many who will try after me - I totally did NOT have it...

And Then... There Was September 22nd.

You see, I wanted to give you an update (especially for people like @stortebeker, @minismallholding, @uthus2k, and @j85063 who engaged with those posts or wanted to know how it went). Because September 26th, 2020 - I posted that my wife and I @audiefaith actually quit.

It had only been 4 days since we stopped at that point. But I was certain we had it beat...

Was I right?


Well... on September 22nd, 2021 - one year later - we celebrated one year free from addiction to cigarettes...

  • Free to breathe...
  • Free to enjoy life...
  • Free to put $600+ per month BACK into our wallets...

It's now been 1 year, 1 month, 14 days and counting since our last smoke. And we're never looking back (except to appreciate it).

A bit of running, anyone?


To add more excitement and really take advantage of being a non-smoker, my wife and I started running. Up until two weeks ago, we were running every day.

The cool, crips morning air. The sweat and the burn. The great gulps of wonderful oxygen flowing through my body. It was incredible!

With some grit and perseverance, I had pushed myself to run 3 miles every day at approximately 23 minutes (or at about 7:30 per mile). And my wife, (who is significantly shorter than I, and had never run before in her life) had worked up to nearly 1.5 miles.

It was liberating!

And I can breathe!!!

(...even though we both injured ourselves a bit. But that story is for a different post. πŸ˜‰)

So... anyway... the point is:

We beat it! And we're still going strong.

So... if you're struggling to quit, like we were - then here's the post I wrote explaining some of our methods and what worked for us: WE FINALLY QUIT! [A Familiar Bondage].

I hope it works for you!


P.S. If we're not acquainted, let's be friends! 😊 Drop me a comment, throw me a vote/follow... whatever feels right.


That's just the best! You've both done so well. Do you think it helped doing the journey together?

Interestingly enough, my uncle actually died of COPD this year. He chose not to quit when he was diagnosed, so he slowly deteriorated. The crazy thing is he went on for years and was 70 by the time he passed. I think he would have been in his 50s when diagnosed. The thought of not being able to catch your breath like that and it going on for years on end...I can't imagine why he did nothing about it. I've never had the addiction, though, so I can't really judge. I do know there are times when I feel like I'm not getting enough air, but a few deep breaths will usually cure that. I struggle with face masks for this reason. Thankfully I rarely have to wear them for long.

So pleased for you and I'm hoping you're breathing well again. That's a scary situation to be in.


"So pleased for you and I'm hoping you're breathing well again. That's a scary situation to be in."

Ya totally... what's even better is that my running is unimpeded and my breathing is better than it's been in years. My sophomore year in high school I ran cross-country. Trained for weeks and my best time on a 3 mile race was 21:08.

I was only about 2 min. off that time after just a week of running again at 32 years old! Crazy. I give all the glory to God.

"I struggle with face masks for this reason. Thankfully I rarely have to wear them for long."

That's one of the glorious things I enjoy about working from home!

Do you also?


I'm lucky enough to be a housewife currently, so I only have to wear them in public indoor spaces. Also at the climbing gym, but it can come off as I climb, so it mostly stays on my chin.


Yeay!!! Congrats man! To be totally honest, at first I had no idea what your mention was about, not even remembering last year's comment (sorry!). But seeing how you quit (and more than that, kept it up for a year!!!) deserves recognition. I know, many people would not be able to. Or they would see a relapse as a reason to throw the towel all together (that is quitting the quitting). But not you, so awesome right there!!! And also props on taking up running. I hope you are doing it on sand, dirt, forest floor, or anything but the pavement. And actually, even then your knees should be fine for the first years or so.

Hahaha, and you know what's a great way to reward successful tobacco abstinence? That's right: some cold, tasty !BEER πŸ˜›

Cheers to both of you!


Thanks man! Appreciate that. And actually we've been running on pavement which is probably a big part of the injury past I've not talked about yet. But just about healed up now.


Hooray for you!

We ran out of smokes on a Thursday about a week and a half ago. It was not a pleasant thing going cold turkey, but prayer got us through.

Thanks for your update!


Prayer is what's up! God carried us through 100%. All we really did was make the commitment and rely on His grace. :)

Thanks for dropping by.