Meditation exercises to stop smoking
Daily routine and responsibilities leave us very little time for ourselves. Little by little we are filling ourselves with stress (both physical and mental) to which we seek exit routes, that eventually become behaviors, many times mechanical behaviors, which are harmful for us in the long term.
When we make things automatically, there isn’t almost awareness of the act itself. The practice of mindfulness or meditation is a health tool and our mechanical actions are going to be shown through it. The consciousness of the act is the automatic loosening.
Here I propose a couple of simple meditation exercises to stop smoking with which you will learn to focus on your own mechanical actions and modify them step by step.
Exercise 1 – Pay attention in the act of taking a cigarette
Watch your feelings and body movements, what happens to your breathing, heartbeat… Now bring your attention to your mental movements.
Be aware of your acts. If we reject things we won’t be able to observe them. Knowing the nature of things is important to change them. It’s a work of acceptance because with the denial we only reject the denied object.
Meditation is an exercise of attention. Notice when you throw the smoke of a cigarette, doesn’t it seem like you would like to expel something else? As if through the smoke you tried to get rid of stress. Observe when you take a cigarette and put it in your mouth, in the act of inhaling a puff of smoke is like if you wanted to fill something, something that is apparently empty. Sometimes the act of picking up a cigarette is like catching a dummy. Ask to yourself: What am I satisfying with the cigarette? What am I calming?
Through the practice of meditation and mindfulness we are going to take contact with the body and mind. With the body sensations, with the stresses and physical limits. We are going to see how our mind goes from one place to another and depending where it goes, it causes different states of mind and body.
We should observe the way our mind fights with the body and our will fight against any body desire. The practice of meditation will allow us to focus our attention and then calm mind and body.
Exercise 2 – Take time to sit down and look for your verticality
This time focus on observing the feeling of your shoulders. If they are tense leave them relaxed, let your arms and hands rest on your legs.
Perceive the feel of your face. If it is stressed, relax it as far as you can. Release the tension from your face and close your eyes.
Gradually focus your attention on your breath, on the air that comes through the nose and moves the chest, the stomach, the ribs… The way the air goes through the nose and moves your chest, stomach, diaphragm, etc. Breath by breath, feeling that physical movement, that feeling.
The mind isn’t still. This is simply an exercise of attention. When you lose the perception of respiratory movement, observe where your mind has gone, where are you and come back to the breath.
It’s about working your attention. Your attention should be where you decide and accept it. You note how many times you lose that contact to return to it.
With the practice of mindfulness, we will see how our mind is getting calm, relaxing, leaving space for calm and tranquility. This calm will allow us to see with more clarity, more awareness.
Wanting to leave an habit that harms is an act of love and courage.