Allen Carr, whose books have helped people all over the world to quit smoking, has been diagnosed with lung cancer.
Mr Carr, who is aged 73, quit smoking in 1983. At the time, he had a 100-a-day habit. Since then, he has become a millionaire, advising people how to quit the habit through self-help books and clinics worldwide.
According to a spokesperson, it is not possible to tell if Mr Carr's cancer is linked to his previous smoking habit. However he 'has spent many years in smoke-filled rooms since he quit while treating smokers for their addictions'.
The spokesperson also pointed out that Mr Carr is convinced that 'he would have been dead 20 years ago' had he not given up smoking in 1983.
"Since I stopped smoking more than 23 years ago, I have been the happiest man in the world - I still feel the same way", Mr Carr said following his diagnosis.
So much for following his advice
Very unfair, Kevin....... Smokers do damage which is long lasting and no doubt he would have died long ago if he had continued smoking 100 a day.
A cruel twist of fate dont you think?
That is only what if, Hilda. Who is to say that if he continued smoking he may never have got lung cancer which has happened in many people's cases. What good is it packing up if there is the real possiblity of getting lung cancer anyway? One may as well keep smoking in the meantime.
It reminds me a little of Jim Fixx. He started the jogging craze and died quite young while doing so.I think re ran himself into an early grave.It\'s the old adage.Everything in moderation.
Kevin's original posting was what one could only describe as mindless and his response to Hilda bordering on laughable. Obvioulsy he knows more than the world's leading medical professionals in the field. Allan Carr's problem has been exacerbated by passive smoking which seems to have escaped Kevin who does not seem to know the full facts. Allan Carr has helped more people over the years by advising them to quit smoking than Kevin ever will be encouraging them to continue.
I was sorry to hear about Alan Carr's diagnosis. I believe that he did the right thing in quitting smoking. He has been an inspiration to many people who quit smoking thanks to him. People that have quit smoking thanks to him get to spend more time on this earth who if still smoking would not. i wish him well and hope that he can overcome this disease.
Sicknote, My response will be typical of many people out there. Allen Carr getting lung cancer will be getting a whole pile of smokers thinking. And this is exactly what they will be thinking. "Well, it isn't much good packing cigarettes up if I will still get lung cancer." Some smokers may never change their lifestyle over hearing that news and it would be very hard to blame them because it looked like Allen Carr knew it all. Not only that he was after stopping for 23 years and the anti-smoking lobby gives the impression that you are literally free of getting lung cancer at that stage. Don't give me the passive smoking one please. I couldn't bear to listen to that crap. We should all be dying of lung cancer if that was the case, it's such a pathetic argument.
perhaps kevin should consider that quality of life is greatly enhanced by giving up smoking, and quite rightly,everyone is susceptible to suffering lung cancer whether a smoker or non-smoker. Mandy might ponder the view that Jim Fixx's life was in fact prolonged by 14 years as a result of taking up jogging, given that the diagnosis of serious heart disease was made when he was 33.
I was so sorry to hear of Alan Carr's illness. Unfortunately nothing to do with passive smoking but more to do with the 100 a day habit. If passive smoking was so dangerous then there would be no hope for any of us that have ever lived with or were brought up by smokers. Alan Carr's kicking of his habit & his programme & books have resulted in the best method ever for people to give up the fags. I greatly admire the man in every way & wish him a full & speedy recovery.
Hear, hear, Ellen! We should be wishing him well and hoping that he makes a full recovery. It is tragic to think that he now has such a serious disease even after all his efforts to save himself and others.
He made enough money out of smokers anyway, that's for sure and of course will probably get the best treatment available.
Why so cynical, Kevin? Are you a smoker? The only people really making money out of smokers are the tobacco companies and the exchequer in taxes!
Kevin - you must be a smoker and for some reason have an axe to grind with Allan Carr and the anti-smoking lobby. Can you not accept that in certain cases smoking does not help healthwise as I and other people accept the fact that some smokers lead a long and good life. Cancer can effect anyone and indeed Allan Carr could have contracted lung cancer if he had never smoked. My comment regarding passive smoking was based on a recent article in The Irish Examiner and a statement released by Mr. Carr.
I'm beginning to think that the pharmeuctical companies and all those quitting smoking guys are making more! Every chemist you go into they have nothing but quitting smoking products in your face. Some bookshops have whole shelves of quitting smoking books and then you have hypnotherepists and the natural healing centres. We'll have clothes next I suppose coming into this equation. The new quitting smoking mini-skirt or a whole new range of quitting smoking underwear! Then there'll be the quitting smoking car! It'll have no smoking coming out of the exhaust, no ashtray and a voice mail that says "Please don't smoke in this car!" and probably have a fist programmed to hit you if you continue! Where did good old fashioned will power go? Or does it not exist anymore? All these different areas products and areas make it sound as though the smoker hasn't got a hope. Many of them go off and spend huge money and they turn out to be a failure for them afterwards. I think this should be stopped. The smoker is only been turned into a scapegoat or someone to be experimented on.
Alan Carr did not jump on the bandwagon in regards to anti smoking. He wrote a book on how to give up & he recommended total willpower with NO reliance on any nicorette type products. It is obvious from reading his book that he was a smoker as the psychology he used was totally accurate and he understands how a smoker feels when they are trying to give up. He addressed the demons that work in your head when you are trying to kick the habit. His products were the cheapest on the market so it is very unfair to accuse him of making a business out of it. As a smoker myself for many years and having tried everything, nicorette gum, patches, inhalers, & even hypnotism, Alan Carr's book was the sole method that got me off the cigerettes and for that I will be eternally grateful to him. He helped so many and I hope he recovers fully so that he can continue to help more like me.
Of course he is after making a huge business out of smokers, anon. He's got books, videos and softwear. It costs 300 euros per person for a few hours and he usually has about 20 people at these sessions. That's 6000 euros he's collecting each time. He has clinics all over the world as well and he certainly hasn't cured anywhere near what he claims he has. I would never believe these kind of figures when you are promoting a business. Could you imagine if you said on your site that out of 20,000 people you have cured only one. Sure no-one would go to his clinics and none of us will ever know how many people actually turn up at his clinics anyway. Personally I think it is wrong to pull out so much money from people who are addicted. This should be covered by the government because it is they who sold the product in the first place. Many smokers have spent money on methods that never worked for them. I think all these type of buisness's should be stopped and the governments should step in once and for all to help the smoker overcome his addiction. The smoker has given the government enough taxes in his life and surely deserves some of it back in his moment of need.
Kevin, you don't have to pay anything to follow Alan Carrs advice other than the cost of a book & that is minimal. In fact, I didn't even buy his book I got it from a friend who it worked for, she passed it to me and I passed it on also. As for the courses, they are obviously what people want to go to & 300 euros for a course (whatever length of time) is still value for money compared to buying nicorette products and/or going to hynotists. I certainly agree with you that the government should subsidise smokers to help them give up but in fact, they do this already for medical card holders as you can get nicorette products on the G.P.S. Personally, I would prefer to see Alan Carr's programme subsidised rather than substituting 1 form of nicotine for another
Apologies typo! The G.M.S. I meant
Well, I bought Allen Carr's book myself anon and it did absolutely nothing for me. His first few pages looked interesting enough but then as you go on in the book it's only a long-winded repeat of the same thing over and over. I was very disappointed with it. Three hundred euros is an awful lot of money to come up with in one batch for some people even though they will eventually spend it on cigarettes. But when someone is smoking they always balance their budgets anyway to allow for this. There's a cut-back on food, clothing, papers, eating out, cinemas ect. People give the impression that you will have loads of money to spend if you pack up cigarettes but in reality you won't. You will either end up eating more or buying more clothes or whatever. The whole secret is to catch people BEFORE they start smoking so that they will never end up budgeting due to their habit. If someone ends up smoking for 10 years we'll say he will have lost what he could have used that money for not only in his pocket but in his mind. His plans for that money went the very day he started smoking. Overtime he would forget what some of his dreams were and so if he packed up after 10 years he would spend the money on useless things unconnected with his dreams. If he was shown his wage packet before he started smoking and shown how he could divide out his money for his dreams then it could easily stop him heading in that direction in the first place. There isn't enough emphasis I think being shown particularly to the young people on what exactly is happening with their money. This is where Ash and any anti-smoking lobby should be channelling all their energies into. They have a whole educational programme themselves right in their lap and they are not using it nor are they using it for the benefit of the smokers. If they were there would be no need what-so-ever for nicoteen products or expensive clinics that smokers have to go to. Ash needs a whole new fresh approach instead of the bully-boy tactics they have at the moment.
I am one of Allen's nieces and obviously extremely sad at this present time. With respect to Kevin's comments, I am totally with you with regard to getting in before the smoker gets hooked, but that doesnt mean you can't successfully get an existing smoker to quit for life. I am a hypnotherapist and people may have their own opinions on whether we can successfully treat people or not, but I am a great believer in positive thinking, and if a smoker wishes to quit smoking and takes the right approach, they will do it, just like anything else in life. Allen's book may not have worked for you Kevin, but it has worked for millions of people around the world as different things work for different people. Every smoker I have treated has successfully quit, even a client who smoked cigarettes and mariguana, spending over £400 per month quit the moment he walked out of my therapy room. The money he actually put away and saved is now a deposit for his business venture, so you see it can be done Kevin, just need to think positively instead of negatively. With regard to Allen still contracting lung cancer after giving up for many years, he was still subject to passive smokers on a group basis and so subject to all the poisonous chemicals and after smoking 100 a day for so many years, then being subjected to huge amounts of passive smokers, it is really no surprise as your body can only repair itself so much.
Jo, For one thing I wouldn't believe for a moment that you have cured every single smoker that has come to you. Any-one that is trying to protect their own livelihood would easily claim this. I know many people who have gone to hypnotherepists and were back smoking within six months. There is a thing called positive thinking and a thing called negative thinking. There is also what I would term as realistic thinking. In the ordinary daily running of people's lives you will constantly hop from positive thinking to negative thinking on a constant basis. This is something that we have to accept and embrace in our lives. We can certainly strive to be more positive and nearly everybody does but to try and keep up positive thinking all the time is an unrealistic expectation for everybody. This is what happens when many people try to give up cigarettes. They go out with this gusto of positive thinking and 'think' that this will work for them no matter what. Then along comes a day when no matter what they do they cannot keep this same frame of mind. Then the despair sets in, they falter and they reach for the cigarettes again. I have seen it over and over and over. This is bad advice in my eyes. Smokers should be given warnings that there lives will not become rosy overnight but that it will stay more or less the same particularly emotionally wise. They are still going to have their up and down days and they need to be able to cope when these 'bad' days arise. So sorry, but I wouldn't be inclined to take your positive thinking seriously at all. I would prefer to steer my mind to a place of understanding addiction rather then fooling it by thinking positively. The one thing my mind is not is a fool and will soon bring me back down to earth. As I have said before I don't like the thought of smokers being constantly experimented on and taking more money off them unnessessarily. Millions of people down through the centuries have managed to beat cigarettes all by themselves. The same should hold true for today.
Hi Jo, Well, Please pass on my thanks to your uncle as he is a hero to me. I hope he comes out of this illness in rapid time. Kevin, if the book didn't work for you then thats sad but it certainly worked for me. Oh and every day I put away the money I would have spent on cigerettes and in 4 months I had 800 euros. That was a real bonus on top of quitting.
To Jo, to repeat what has been said above, some of us are thinking of Allan and his family at this difficult time and wishing him well. As for making money out of helping smokers to quit - there are many far less noble ways to make a living and no shame at all in making a honest living out of helping others. I'm a nurse - should I be ashamed that my salary comes from the suffering of others. Far from it - I am proud of what I do and so should Allan.
The majority of people help others so that they will gain substantially themselves. If you were really out to help others then you would do it for nothing.
Well Kevin, firstly I actually have not charged any of my ex-smokers for my help, but as Hilda rightly commented, even if I had, there are far more deviant ways of earning a living. I do not disagree with anything you have said at all Kevin. At the end of the day, we are all human and have our up and down moods. I do not claim that my client's lives will change overnight and that because they give up the evil weed they will be a completely different person as soon as they walk out the door, but, when I refer to positive thinking, I try to get my clients to take back control of their lives, which not only refers to their smoking habit, but also taking control back of their lives in general. For years smoking controlled Allen and that was his frame of mind towards his smoking habit. By enlightening the client that they can control their habit, it usually becomes a no-brainer so to speak, common sense in fact. My mother died very young at the age of 47 due to breast cancer, but she again was a very heavy smoker, and I am under no illusion that the smoking helped her along nicely to her death. Her consumption was probably near Allen's of 100 a day. The lasting memory I have of my mother is her hacking cough, therefore the thought of having a cigarette from my point of view has always never been an option. What I am trying to say Kevin is that education and common sense are usually all that it takes, but then if people do not want to give up, then every excuse in the book will be used.
Jo, Many people feel out of control in their lives simply because other people tell them that what they are doing is wrong. People should be allowed to judge these situations themselves. There are many many different types of smokers in the world. Some only smoke at weekends, others only at night, some only with alcohol, others all day long. There is a theory out there at the moment that smokers cannot control their smoking and that is a very wrong theory. I have watched and conversed with smokers for many years and I know all the different types of smokers that are around. In Allen's case he reached the 100 a day mark which is undoubtedly an out of control situation. But other people have been in Allen's situation and have beaten cigarettes themselves. Allen though decided to use his advice and experience to try and get others off cigarettes the same way as he did. But the very thing that controlled Allen's habit for years actually turned out to be a blessing for him because it made him a fortune of money afterwards. I hope Allen realises this. This is the whole irony of this. On the one hand he is trying to give up something that he perceived as an evil weed yet in turn that evil weed gave him much more money then he ever spent on cigarettes at the time. Sometimes in life we are drawn to particular people, animals, places or products that we hate so that one day we will learn to accept them rather than hate them. I would say that Allen Carr has been helped most generously in gaining this particular insight. Maybe it is also time Jo, that you moved on from that lasting memory of your mother and the choice she made in her life and look for other memories where she was laughing and happy. No-one has to go and save the world because of one perceived tradgedy in their families.If anything your mother did you a favor because now you don't smoke and might have an easier death because of it. She was your education but for others she was not. All anyone has to do is help one person who in turn will help another and that is always enough. It is in everyone's nature to do that. At the moment smokers are being exploited and not helped. Smokers not only smell of tobacco at the moment. They smell of money and there are many vested interests. They make products and claim massive success from them yet there are still millions upon millions of smokers all over the world.
Firstly Kevin, please be assured that I do have happy memories of my mum, as she was a very joyful person and saw the best in everyone, but unfortunately, when you are a child, you remember the most frequent behaviours, which I'm sure you already know, and the most frequent behaviour, was the hacking cough. Thankfully, I am a very positive, joyful and humerous person myself and do not wallow in my grief and have used my education with respect to nicotine and its effects to help others. I agree that of course there are all different severities of smoking, but lets be honest, we both know it does nothing beneficial for you whatsoever, so whether you smoke 1 or 100 a day, you are still not benefiting from it one bit. Anyone who says they enjoy a cigarette is just trying to justify it, as I'm sure you already know. Yes Allen did make himself a good living out of his knowledge, and why shouldnt he? we all need to earn a living and as I said previously, I personally would be very pleased with myself for achieving the results he has, but you must not also forget that he has compaigned vehemently for the nicotine companies to become obsolete. Why would he do this if he didnt genuinely care for his cause as this would mean an end to his income? At the end of the day Kevin, people will make all the excuses in the world to smoke, but there are no excuses. If you want to stop, you will find the means to do so and most smokers will agree with that. In my opinion smokers are not exploited, as everyone knows the effects of the poisons in cigarettes, but it's their choice to carry on slowly killing themselves if they so wish.
Kevin, all smokers smoke because they are addicted to nicotine. No smoker can control an addictive drug, no more than heroin addicts can control their addiction to heroin. Thatís utter rubbish. There are many reasons why smokers differ in their smoking pattern. Not everybody has the lung capacity to smoke 100 a day. Not everybody can afford to. For some the dread of the health risks gives them the constitution to smoke only 2 a day or maybe only why they are drinking etc. But ALL smokers smoke to relieve the withdrawals from nicotine, be it physical or psychological withdrawals. Allen Carr is only one man. A man who has helped countless numbers of people to quit this deadly addiction and live longer, happier lives. The people making millions are the drug pushers behind the glossy packets, tobacco giants, governments and pharmaceutical companies
Kevin, the smoker who smokes only when he is out for a drink, or in the evening etc are not compromising their health in any way. They have it controlled. Its the ones (like me) that couldn't control the amount I smoked (couldn't afford it but would do without essentials to have my ciggies) that gained from Alan Carr's knowledge. He didn't suggest that you relied on any other substitute & the fact that he kicked it, gave me hope & made me believe that I too, could do it. Also, his psychology of how the brain works when you start to wean yourself off the ciggies made total sense to me, and made me realise that Alan was a genuine person as he was the first (and only) that explained what was going on in my head when I was in the throes of dependency. As for making money, if you want to reach out to as many people as possible you have to make money in order to do that. I work in the caring profession and also do complimentary therapy. I regularly charge nothing when I give my treatments as I believe in helping those that couldn't normally afford such treatments & I also believe in 'giving something back'. However, if I was to do that full time I would have to charge something as I incur costs ie. heating, lighting or travelling expenses to hospitals/homes etc and could not afford to do that for very long without getting into terrible financial problems. It is a balance. Nurses get paid to look after the sick in hospitals. Do you think they shouldn't? (albeit a miserly sum considering their workload). Unfortunately we all have to live, pay bills etc. If you want to give up the habit you will when the time is right for you. I heard a DJ on RTE 2 some months ago saying he had kicked the smoking habit but 2 years down the road was still on some crazy amount of nicorette gum every day. To me, he just substituted 1 addiction for another. At least Alan Carr clarified that when you make your mind up to kick the habit, there is no other way but to go cold turkey. I totally agree with him.
First of all Razor and Jo, no-one can predict whether a person lives longer or not from packing up cigarettes. That's only another false saying because we are not capable of knowing this kind of knowledge at the moment. You could certainly convince yourself alright that you have lived an extra 20 years simply because you gave them up. I have heard many people say this. "Oh, I would definately be dead now if I didn't pack them up!" It's only crazy people think like this and it is wrong to convince people of false truths. The real truth is that no-one knows how long you will live and therefore you cannot even put a minute onto their lives. You say Allen campaigned vehemently to close down the tobacco companies. Well, that is news to me because I never heard him. I also think it would be far better if he campaigned the governements to force the tobacco companies to make safer cigarettes. What you don't seem to realise is that many people like to smoke. The minute we defend the habit we are told straight away that we are in denial and we are making excuses or we are addicted. Therefore the smoker cannot say anymore because no-body is interested in listening. And that is where the real problem lies today and why so many people smoke. No-body is listening. If a child went to the hospital with a pain in the morning every one that looks after that child listens attentively to what the child has to say about where the pain is so that they can alleviate the suffering. No-one though wants to listen to the smoker. The smoker is addicted and so all he has to do is pack up the cigarettes and the problem is over. Next case please. It's absolutely pathetic. It is not I the smoker then who is blind to his habit, it is those who look on and 'think' they know how to solve it. To say that a person who smokes occasionally,( say at the weekends with alcohol)is addicted is another ridiculous statement as is the person who only smokes one cigarette a day. These smokers are looking at treats and have always stuck to this and never smoked any more. I know of a mother who smokes only in the long summer holidays when her kids are around constantly. Does that mean that for the other nine months of the year she is still addicted to cigarettes? If people who only smoke 2 a day because they are in dread of the health risks how are they able to control their smoking? This is only proving that people can control their smoking anyway. Your addiction notions doesn't stand up properly in lots of cases thereby proving that heavier smokers are smoking for other reasons.
I have been to Allen Carr's clinic twice, have read easyway, and only way - So far, it has not worked for me. However, I still think there is something in his method that does work and I can understand why it has worked for so many people. Maybe I haven't got the right message yet or haven't understood the method - but I do believe that one day, when I do give up smoking, it will be partly to do with Allen Carr and the other part to do with some willpower at least. I do feel sad to hear about Allen Carr's illness, but I also feel that after smoking 100 cigs per day for such a long time, he is very lucky to have survived this long. Smoking is an evil, and it will catch up with you one day - accept it or not. No point thinking it won't happen to you, because it most probably will. I do not disagree with Kevin at all and I also don't disagree with Allen Carr fans. At the end of the day, if you really want to stop smoking and be healty, you will do it by using whichever method works for you. I know of people who use both Allen Carr method and to help them during the initial 3 weeks also use nicorette patches/gums etc. Whatever works for you - just try it & don't give up. That is what I plan to do next week! I hate smoking, its taken away all my energy - and I will give up or try to by any method that works for me - so to all of you out there - do what you think will work for you - whichever method works - there is no right or wrong. By all means read Allen Carrs's books, and if you still think you need extra help of nicotine substances, then don't hesitate - use both methods if u have to.
Alisha, there is probably a method in Allen Carr's book but it is not written in the proper explanatory fashion for everybody. It is like the text books they use in school. Many children have failed exams on the text book only because they didn't understand it whereas if they were given a different text book they probably would have passed. Others need to be shown it in practical terms as well but the only real message that Allen Carr gives is that it has to come from ourselves. Anyone can come up with that idea. Most people will give up cigarettes because they simply don't need them anymore. Some people have dropped them at the whim of a hat. There has to be far more complexity involved so if that is the case and not simply addiction. Addiction would have to take time to come off of whereas some people don't need time. I believe that this essential and vital part is being missed. Something has to be cleared up first (which is something I don't know) before a person will even be willing to give them up. The only other thing I can think of is that certain people need certain doses of an ingredient in tobacco until the body is actually full and there is no more room. Maybe this happens to some drug addicts or alcoholics as well. In the case of cigarettes it may not be the nicotine at all. It might be some other ingredient. While every smoker I think would prefer to give up and know what damage it causes there isn't enough willingness to do so. We should be trying our hearts out to give them up but we don't. We just keep reaching for them all the time which doesn't make any sense at all. And the more we are told it the more careless we seem to be. I'm baffled!
Why does Kevin sound so angry ? Because it didn't work for him ? I gave up from reading Allen Carr's book 16 years ago and even if I do develop lung cancer now, I will always be grateful for many things that being a non smoker for 16 years have given me. As soon as I gave up, silly non smokers asked me " Do you feel better" ? NO ! after 3 or 4 days I still felt like sh.., but after 3 or 4 months I began to realise that I could smell again ! Daffodils, roses, bread, a freshly bathed baby ( my young niece), I had forgotten such smells existed. After a year I began to FEEL healthier, colds didn't always incorporate a hacking cough and I did not get so many colds anyway. After two years I began to forget about ciggies altogether and now they no longer feature in my life. I am talking as someoone who once got out of bed in the middle of the night, after realising I didn't have a spare pack in my cupboard. I couldn't sleep, because I knew I only had one left, so I drove to an all night garage at 3.30 a.m. to buy some and then slept happily. I smoked approx 50 -60 a day. Believe me I was totally addicted !! I am so grateful to Allen Carr, I don't care if - as Kevin says - he has made a lot of money from it, I would gladly give him any amount, for the freedom and healthy lifestyle I now have. My youngest sister - Christine - died in 2001 at age 42 from lung cancer. She had given up smoking 18 months before she was diagnosed with it. It has broken my heart to see her suffer and now to have to learn to live without her. Last year we saw the birth of her first grandchild. When we were young and thought we were indestructible, Chris and I used to say we couldn't give up smoking, we said "We would rather die happy". If anyone is reading this and is still smoking, PLEASE believe me, there is NOTHING happy about seeing someone die from lung cancer. Chris was the most beautiful, bubbly blue eyed blonde, she lit up a room, just walking in to it. Her personality was sparkling and I know that everyone who knew her, saw her as a fun, vibrant, beautiful woman. She fought lung cancer for 20 months, she had her ribs sawn through to try to remove the tumour, the scar ran down her breastbone around under her ribs and up her back. The tumour couldn't be removed, so she had to recover from that op, to start Chemotherapy. The Chemotherapy burnt her insides, so that she couldn't even swallow water without it burning, the doctors told her it was like having severe sunburn on the inside. After that the lung tumour spread to her brain, she started to have epileptic fits. The treatment for this was radiotherapy, which meant that every bit of her hair fell out, only 3 days before her only daughter's wedding. Chris died 3 months after her daughter's wedding, bloated from steroids, gasping for breath and in agony from the secondary brain tumour. I wa with her through all of her treatment and when the doctors told her they could do no more. The look of fear in her eyes still haunts me. She certainly didn't "Die happy ". Her children are bereft without her and she has missed so many family occasions. If someone out there is reading this and still smoking, please try to stop, NOW !! We always thought we were indestructible, we thought cancer only happened to other people. It doesn't ! It will happen to you.
Kevin, it is right what you say about positive thinking, but if Allen has helped people give up only for a couple of months, it is worth while. It has still shown those people that they can actually make that first step which is the biggest one. They will then realise that each time they try to give up it gets easier. Therefore, Allen should be praised, not put down.
Kevin, it is no wonder you think it's so hard to give up smoking with your negative attitude! What is wrong with people trying a different approach to giving up? It can only be a good thing. The more options there are, the better the chance of quitting if you ask me.
Heather, I would prefer to be a critic in these areas for the simple reason that there has been more successes coming from smokers who were able to do it entirely from themselves and never needed outside help. Now I still believe that the reason they did this is because somehow they 'saw' something within themselves or within their own lives that made them come to a decision where there was no going back. On the other hand I have seen plenty of others who went away to get help, couldn't last the pace and in some cases ended up back on the cigarettes heavier then they ever were. There is far more to giving up cigarettes than anyone realises. Allen Carr does not adresse this problem at all. He is only concerned with the effect that cigarettes have on a person's life but he says nothing about what effect the person has on cigarettes. This is the vital link all the time. People are smoking simply because they have to because some part of their lives is lacking somewhere. I intend to keep going and won't rest until I find these answers. It's within the person locked away in some secret room but must have a pattern somewhere. I can see a pattern emerging in my own life but cannot see it clearly yet. The only way I have got to this level so far is by watching and conversing with those who gave up from themselves. But I will never get the proper truth from other people because they wouldn't be prepared to leave me know the details of their personal lives. But what I can do is look at the details of my own life and try and get to the bottom of this once and for all.
Kevin, You say:- While every smoker I think would prefer to give up and know what damage it causes there isn't enough willingness to do so. We should be trying our hearts out to give them up but we don't. We just keep reaching for them all the time which doesn't make any sense at all. And the more we are told it the more careless we seem to be. I'm baffled! This is addiction Kevin. This is what addicts do. They know what they are doing is wrong & bad for them but they cannot stop! The answers to giving up are inside of you & only you can give them up. Its not easy but the reason Allan Carr's book worked for me, was when I was in the early days & feeling really depressed, he described those feelings to me & made me realise I was not the 1st person to feel like that. He described the 'demons' in my head telling me "Go on, its ok to have just 1". He made all those feelings real & not just something that was happening to me. I actually felt that life wasn't worth living if I couldn't smoke cigerettes. There is no other method but cold turkey. You can mix & match by using nicorette products if they help but at the end of the day, you go it alone. There is no point being angry with anyone, just yourself & neither is there any reason for navel gazing. For whatever reason you started smoking, that reason is now well & truly in the past & waiting until you 'fix it' is just another excuse to postpone the inevitable day when you have to give them up. The reason you started smoking has been superceded by addiction. It is purely addiction that is keeping you smoking, not the reason that you first put a cigerette into your mouth. For me, I only started smoking because all my friends were smoking. When they all gave up, I was still the one puffing away, as I was the addict then, not them. Anyone that can give them up without any pain, was never an addict. If I could have controlled them to 10 or less a day I would have been happy but the thing was, I couldn't control my smoking. It was all or nothing for me but obviously that is just my personality type. However, I could use that as an excuse all my life & keep on smoking but as you say, I was at a point that I couldn't live with it any longer as it was like playing russian roulette!
Belinda, Have you ever thought that the more options one has in life the more confused they can become? Going into the supermarket I am looking for a bottle of shampoo and lo and behold there are about 20 different bottles looking at me on the shelf. The shop thinks that I have all day to be looking and examining each of those 20 bottles when all I want to do is pick one bottle and feck off out of there! But my eye scans all the bottles and after five or ten minutes I still haven't picked a bottle of shampoo. And so my mind goes back home into the house and I 'remember' the bottle that is half-full under the sink and I say "Ah, sure I have enough for another while." So too many options can be counter-productive. Anon, On the one hand you tell me that all the answers to giving up are inside in me and on the other hand you tell me that I shouldn't be naval gazing or trying to find out the reasons why I smoked my first cigarette. Which is it? You talked about 'demons' in your head as did Allen Carr but I don't have a thought most of the time when I reach for a cigarette. My hand just goes out, opens the packet and I pull a cigarette out and light it. I could be thinking of what the bank manager said to me all the time before, during and after having the cigarette. That thought that tells me to have a cigarette is then an unconsious thought and that is what I want to get at. Why would I want to be making up excuses when I find this whole area fascinating? I am looking to be consious of the unconsiousness. We all do have different personalities and this is the path that I want to follow. I cannot accept addiction on its own at all and I don't think I ever will. If I appear to be angry it is because we probably are. Us long-term, die-hard smokers who cannot seem to get their messages across properly at all. To you we are making up all the excuses in the world but for us the last thing they are, are excuses. But you can't seem to see this part at all. You also said that anyone who can give them up without any pain was never an addict. Are you trying to say that those who smoked 60-80 cigarettes a day for 30 years and who came along and just packed them up one day on the spot are not addicts??? But if I came along after 30 years, tried to give up but was shaking like a leaf, was like a lunatic around the place, felt headachy and sick, then I was an addict all right?? I'm baffled again!
Kevin, you think far too much. Perhaps that is half of your problem. Whilst trying to give up you are permanently analysing the situation.
Kevin, I have smoked 20 a day for 11 years. I am only 27 and already have a terrible cough. I tried Allen's book and it didn't work for me. Nicotine gum has worked temporarily and hypnotherapy was the most successful when I didn't smoke for 4 months. I believe if I had been able to afford to keep going to hypnotherapy I wouldn't be smoking today. I want to give up smoking more than anything but just don't seem to be able to. Why don't me and you try to quit using will power, now?! Then we can compare notes, and see if we can indeed do it without help????
To Kevin, I hope you do not mind me asking you a few questions? firstly, do you really believe that the addiction to nicotine is so strong that it takes control of you? would you compare the addiction to that of a cocaine user who, even when he wakes after sleeping, has to have the same amount of cocaine as he would have done if he was awake, or do you usually sleep through the night and only need one when awakening? which is usually the case. What the nicotine companies have cleverly done is to produce a drug that leaves your system fairly quickly, so leaving you feeling in need of more on a constant basis, but the drug itself is not that addictive if you break the chain, and that is the hard bit for most, as you know yourself, but do you really think it is the addiction or your belief that you cannot control it and that it controls you? leaving you feeling hopeless and out of control. When you say you just light up without even kind of thinking about it, have you ever just picked it up and made yourself think about why you are having it and what it does for you? as you know all it is doing is killing you, and I think, more importantly, it is controlling you rather than the other way round, which when you think about it is absurb, a small cylindrical object is dictating to you when, where and how much you need it. Do you think if you asked yourself every time you had a cigarette what it actually does for you, you would still smoke it, especially bearing in mind the thousands of poisonous chemicals they put into them and the very unhygienic way they are produced. Have you ever just calmly thought to yourself \"no, I dont need it, the nicotine will have left my body within 3 weeks and I managed to cope with lifes stresses and strains before I smoked and other people who dont smoke manage to as well, in which case, so can I?\"..I hope you dont think I am stating the obvious Kevin, but you seem a really intelligent man with a strong mind and someone who could easily just stop the habit without much assistance whatsoever...you just have to want to and to be prepared to put in a bit of willpower and determination...even just to show yourself that you can and take it in small stages from an hour to half a day etc...remembering that after 3 weeks the nicotine has gone..it is a psychological problem, not an addiction and one which you can easily do if you really want to..I do hope you succeed Kevin.
Annette, just wanted to thank you for posting your piece. The story of your sister is much like my mother's...everyone should be made to read stories like this as a lot of people just walk around with blinkers on believing it will never happen to them or anyone they know but unfortunately all to often, it does.
Oh, dear...Now the 'demons' really came out Heather when you asked me to quit smoking with you right now. This is the way it went. My whole body tensed up completely. Voices came from everywhere. "What? You mean now! No, not a hope! That was the worst question you ever asked me! I'm not ready! I need more time! Help! Next year maybe! NO, NO, NOOOOO!" I need to get a grip on myself. This is serious stuff. A bloody nightmare!
Annette, I'm sorry I never saw your post when I looked at this page the last time. I am really sorry about your sister and I read your post a few times. I hope to God that there are some people out there who will give up smoking when they hear these type of stories and I mean that from the bottom of my heart. Please don't think that I am being heartless when I tell you that these kind of stories do nothing for me. I have read many but I still keep smoking. Please don't get offended because no matter what I prefer to be truthful. I don't want to be sympathising in a false way. I prefer to be honest. I could easily turn around and say, "Oh, right, Annette. I'll pack up smoking right now and never do it again." I know you would like to hear these words but if you ever do hear them from me I will word it in such a way that you will know that no matter what I have quit. This is just too serious a subject now to be pussyfooting around in so I am going to stay completly truthful. Jo asked me about cocaine and does nicotine addiction compare with it. What I will say is that nicotine addiction is probably stronger then we realise. If I wake up in the middle of the night I will have a cigarette and I have to have one first thing in the morning. I do not feel normal in the mornings until I have at least five cigarettes. Four won't even do me. And those cigarettes have to be in quick succession. After that I ease out to batches of two's throughout the day until I have reached a quota. To be honest I don't know who is controlling what. Is it the addiction or is it my belief that I cannot control it. I would tend to go in favor of not being able to control it. I can't make a start if you know what I mean because I feel blocked in some way. The panic rises up and just takes over. It's like I get paralised or something. I am beaten and I know I am. I have no will power left and no determination. It has evaporated on me. So in this moment in time I am just going to admit defeat. My body is just too tired I think.
Kevin, I can't remember now if you said you had tried hypnotherapy for smoking? but in any case, I am not telling you to try it for smoking, but it may well just help you to be able to take some control of yourself, and I dont mean that in a condescending way at all. You sound as if you have pent up emotions which need venting in one way or another, which everybody suffers from, and you also sound as if you find it hard to relax maybe without a cigarette? now it does appear from what you have written previously that you arent a great believer in seeking therapy but do you think that possibly some guided relaxation may just help for a starter? either via hypnosis, meditation or whatever works for you?..your problems do not appear to be with the nicotine..they appear to be psychological and what harm would it do to try and seek to help to find out just what they are so that you can understand it and work with it?
Kevin unfortunately I think that until you reach a point where you feel comfortable in your mind that you can take control or you have a personal experience that spurs you to give up then you will probably lose the argument with those "demons in your head". I think Allen Carr and people like him are not necessarily the sole reason people stop but they do help people who want to give up. I tried for years and failed - 60 a day. A personal loss motivated me and Allen Carr convinced me.....18 years on and never felt the urge at any stage to go back. If you do want to quit I hope you find a way. PS I am not anti-smoking - I believe in free choice.
Kevin, Don't give up cigerettes Please. What I will ask you to do, is just give them up for 1 day. 1 day only, thats all. Get up in the morning and just say, "OK, no cigerettes JUST FOR TODAY". You can get through the day simply by thinking how much you will enjoy the cigerette the following morning. Believe me, at the end of that day, you will feel you have achieved something. Just try it, 1 day only! No thinking about it, just do it.
I just wanted to say I am very sorry to hear about Allen Carr being diagnosed with Lung Cancer. I also wanted to make a comment to Kevin with respect to "quitting smoking". Kevin it sounds like you believe until you figure out why you smoke you will be unable to quit. The reasons why you smoke are simply "illusions" or to a smoker justifications. I have smoked for 20 years and I have quit smoking several times for extended periods of time. I have also made the mistake of thinking I could have just "one" and ending up smoking. The truth is I don't really enjoy smoking and I feel a hell of a lot better when I don't smoke. You probably started smoking like we all did in your teenage years when you were defying authority and claiming your independence. That is how you fell into the trap but that is no longer relevant now as you need to find a way to get out of the trap. Independence, the very thing you were trying to achieve in your your early youth is the very thing that you have lost to a cigarette - imagine the irony in that. The mind is an amazing thing and changing how you perceive things is a very powerful tool. Athletes use visualization tecqniques prior to a competition to be more successful. Kevin it is not just the goal but the journey. Ultimately, it comes down to this you can continue to smoke or you can quit, the choice is yours. With respect to Allen Carr making money by publishing books on how he found it so easy to quit smoking. It costs money to publish books also he has a family to raise therefore, he should make a living. His books are reasonably priced and are well written and are written from someone that has been there. He has helped millions of people and undoubtly saved millions of lives and increased peoples quality of life. It would not surprise me in the least if this man beats this illness and continues on for another 20 years. The mind is a powerful tool in healing and he obviously has the right mindset to succeed. I believe that his smoking and being in small banquet rooms where he was exposed to side stream or passive smoking has caused his illness. There are also people that have never smoked a day in their lives look at Dana Reeves, wife to movie star to Christopher Reeves that just recently died of lung cancer. Unfortunately, there are diseases that kill people. I just came across this chat session and wanted to post my thoughts. Thanks for reading. Laura
Jo, I don't like the thought of hypnotherepy or hypnosis or anthing that could fool the mind. I prefer to have my wits about me at all times. My mind is already fooled anyway from cigarettes so fooling it again could make things a lot worse. I tried anon to give them up for one day. I lasted two hours and just couldn't bear it any longer. But I will try again. I promise you. I don't believe in free choice anymore where cigarettes are concerned. What choice is there anyway? A lifetime of being trapped in a cage is it? There is no choice as far as I am concerned. You're either caught when you start or you are not when you don't. There is nothing else outside of this. I can hardly sleep anymore and I can hardly eat anymore although surprisingly my energy is up. It is when I try to give them up that my energy drops. I suppose that is down to the worry of trying to give up. I wish Allen Carr had never got lung cancer. I remember the day when the news was announced. There were several of us smokers together and we all just looked at each other in total horror. There was a long silence after that until someone said, "Well, there isn't much hope for us then is there?" It almost feels as though he betrayed us by getting lung cancer. Why wasn't it covered up or something? Couldn't they have said some other disease rather than lung cancer? He would have still helped some smokers to give up then at least. But then I can't talk. I prefer to know the truth at all times so I suppose we just have to accept it somehow.
Kevin, I fully understand how you feel. I felt the same way too, believe me. When I would wake up in the morning I would remember that I could'nt smoke & then felt like I had nothing worth living for. You seem to be quite young (compared to me). Are your parents alive? I found the best way for me,was to just say I would do 1 day at a time but I had to have a reason as I couldn't do it for myself so I picked a person I loved who had died & every time I got a craving I would think of that person & say to myself that I was doing it for them so I couldn't let them down when it was only for 1 day. Each day I would pick another person & do it for them. My initial plan was to just do it for 1 week only. After that week was up, I thought "Wow, I have done a whole week" (Never had even managed 1 full day up to that) I also used nicorette gum but very small amount & I carried Alan Carr's book with me everywhere & when I felt a craving I would open the book at any page & usually he would be saying just what I was feeling at that moment. Even after 1 day off them, you will feel you have achieved so much & you will be surprised how much strenght you will get from that feeling. I also found that I couldn't have any cigs near me or in the house but some people like to know they have 1 or 2. Its a personal thing. With me, if I hadn't got them, then I couldn't smoke them & had to do without. Do try it Kevin, just for the 1 day. Don't dwell too much on what day, just do it.
I will try learning your post off by heart and see if I can manage one day before the next week is out. I'll use it as a prayer.
well all very intresting reading and kept me busy for a while...firstly i want to say i thought it was a joke about alan,seems very ironic but hey as the man says in his book the worst thing must be when you smoke and you are told u have cancer its the ..."shit i caused this myself thats the hardest thing"...at least when ya give them up your doing your bit to keep healthy ...the powers of the universe will take care of the rest....and i must say kevin as i read your pieces one thing kept screaming out at me....you dont want to give them up...that simple..thats where the book works...you have to actually want to..i smoke from 18 to 39..read the book went off them with unbelivable ease and 2 years years went back on them with the same unbelievable ease.ive since got a grip on myself and stopped killing myself...i quite like living and i really dont want to be laying on a hospital bed thinking ..shit i caused this...i hate non smokers who get on their high horse about smokers, its all choice,adults,free will.and all that crack...it took me 20 yeras to decide to care about myself...but today is today and im doing the best i can do for today for my health....god i miss going on the piss and smoking like a train! i suppose its growing up eh!..get well soon alan and kevin,either stop or just enjoy smoking, all this stress will cause cancer!!
So what if he is a millionaire,the taxes we paid on fags have bought many politicians great cars and villas abroad, There is nothing corrupt with allen's message, it works for most people. It's honest and it's simple and I'm glad he benfited finacially from making millions of others see the trap and finding the escape route. The government loves us to smoke,they need the money. We are surrounded by corruption on colossal degrees in Ireland, most of it we will never hear about. so it sickens me to hear some people moaning about the financial gain that Carr has enjoyed. Allen Carr's method works but not if you are a cynic. Life gets immediately better within 6 hours of not smoking. Yes we will all die but It's better to enjoy some sense of life and freedom in our lives. Kevin you keep coughing up black shit in the mornings,and ask yourself why do i always smell and feel so shit.. well you have the answer
Kevin, I have read about half of the posts to this discussion. You tell us that you will not rest until you get to the bottom of why people, and perhaps, you smoke. You will be relentless to find the person who can givew you the answer. You are also extremely negative in your comments, opinions and thoughts and tell us that positive thinking is folly. Well Kevin, you will never find the answer that way and will continously be confined to a smoking life as that attitude will never help you give up. Perhaps this could be the answer you are looking for within yourself, the ability to believe that you can overcome your addiction. In the meantime, continue your relentless search by actually rerading ALL of Alen Carrs book. He does go ito quite a bit of what you are talking about and looking for. Dont put it down after a few measly pages. Read the whole book with an open mind before you condemn it to the shelf dust.
Tom, I'm probably negative alright when it comes to giving up cigarettes but I am a very positive person as a smoker. I have been on many of the smoking discussions here but everything seems to have failed in getting me to pack up the cigarettes. I know it's me because I am holding back. I feel that I am clinging to the cigarettes. However my anger is gone and seems to have evaporated into the sky. Maybe this is the real miracle. I needed that anger to come out although I dumped a lot of it on poor irishhealth.com. At the moment my smoking has increased a bit although the times have changed. I smoke five cigarettes in a row after just arising, then there is nothing for a good while. I'm not smoking much between 12 mid-day and 8p.m but then I increase again at night-time making up the difference. This shift might change in the future or it could remain like that for a long time. However I feel happy with what I am doing and I am not upset about having to go out for cigarettes anymore. I smoke now when I want to rather then feeling that I must stock up under pressure. I don't think that I am ready to pack up but deep down I know that it would be a dream come true.
Sean, personally I would prefer to have lung cancer whilst on the cigarettes rather than being off them for years and still getting lung cancer. Allen Carr's method does not work now in my mind. However there are many people out there who will say different and that is fine but he no longer works for me. I am proud of being a cynic when it comes to these things because I have seen off-hand many people forking out big money and failing to pack up the cigarettes. There are many books now written on how to pack up. Allen Carr isn't the only one out there. All of this could be eliminated in the morning if safer cigarettes could be made and it must be very easy to make a safe cigarette that would not make people addicted to them. Governments won't do it because they want people to keep smoking so they can pull the taxes off them. This is the whole irony in all of this as well as the irony of Allen Carr getting lung cancer. Most of the people that I know needed no help in giving up cigarettes and did it from sheer will-power. That is the only method that is probably needed in the long run or maybe one or two other helpful methods. Many people now want to get in on the act though because there is the potential for making a lot of money. This I believe is wrong and it reminds me of those spams that are around the place making people pay for things that are no good for them.
Smoking is your decision - it's that simple. I gave up over 5 years ago after reading Alan Carrs book but I suppose I had already made the decision before reading the book - I used it as mental rational against the cravings and understanding the addiction. My mother-in-law recently died of lung-cancer having given up 2 years previously and that left my father-in-law very angry with her. I didn't give up smoking to avoid lung cancer because I know that I might have already smoked that cigarette but I made the decision I did not want to live my life as a smoker.
Kevin, about your safe cigarettes, that was tried in the US in the late 80's. There is a film about it called Barbarians At The Gate". It starred James Gardner. Quite a good film actually. It was about a company called RJR Nabisco, one of the biggest US companies at the time. It spent Ä450 million dollars (I think) researching the smokeless cigarette - a safe cigarette. All research results were very positive until the "taste trials". The results showed that the smokeless cigarettes tasted like s**t and smelt like f@rts and the company's share price plummeted and was eventually the subject of one of the most hostile takeovers in the US. Its a true story. Rent the film. Anyway, the bottom line is that I dont think anyone will try to replicate the RJR Nabisco saga and we are therefore doomed to a life of killer fags.
Tom, That was a very interesting story. I didn't know that. Perhaps I am looking for something so that can't be done at this moment in time. However there is surely a specific mixture that could be fiddled around with in order to stop more of us smoking. Could the doses of nicotine be reduced even further or is nicotine the real problem? I'm sure the tobacco companies know this and could even guess when a person becomes addicted. It is a vital area that needs to be looked at as many smokers want this. It's a fright that none of us can go one day without cigarettes.
Herbal cigarettes are regarded as safer cigarettes. However as any smoker who has tried them will tell you, they dont work! Why? They dont contain nicotine! The only reason anyone has ever had the need or desire to smoke is because of nicotine! The cigarette manufacturing process actually destroys the nicotine content of the cigarette. So because cigarette companies know, no nicotine, no sales, they inject the exact quantity back into the product! Nobody smokes for the sake of smoking. Smoking is mearly the method used to administer the drug, just as a needle is used to administer heroin. Its drug addiction, pure and simple!
I have many hardened smokers in my pub. Does nicotine make hardened smokers nervous and jittery. Everyone of us seem to be a bundle of nerves and most of the ones I know are literally dancing before my eyes. Legs, hands and body movements are constantly going. I find it very hard to sit still myself but somehow when I have a fag I can manage to sit still for a while. I and many others cannot sit still long enough to see out a conversation without having a cigarette. How do we learn to relax without a fag?? Or is it just a certain personality does this? Some people are also under the impression that the lower-class in society smoke the most but I have found it to be the opposite at least in my pub. Most of the hardened smokers are in middle to upperclass jobs.
Publican, there are plenty other smoking ban discussions on Irishhealth. Please dont turn this one into another.
Publican, Cigerette smoking actually irritates the nerve endings, that is why you don't relax without one. In fact, you don't relax with OR without one. The relaxation part of smoking is only a myth. Its all part and parcel of the addiction. For my part, if its just the nicotine alone that I am addicted to, then why don't the nicotine inhalers work for me? I have tried them and they do nothing for me, yet I only smoke very light, low tar cigerettes. (Don't give me the lecture that they are just as or even worse than the strong ones, I know all that). The only method that worked ever for me is the Alan Carr method and I lasted for 3 months before I made the fatal mistake of thinking I could handle 1 or 2! So far, Alan Carr is the only one that has made sense to me and explains the feelings like a true smoker rather than from a percieved 'nasty habit' point of view. Kevin, I think you get some sort of kick in saying you are a smoker and will stay that way. If you were genuinely interested in kicking the habit you would talk less and act more. Its completely up to you and no one else. You are on your own with this & its time you stood up and took the challenge instead of behaving like a spoilt child, saying "I won't, I won't, I won't" Nobody else gives a damn at the end of the day, so its all up to you lad!
I have just joined this discussion and glanced through some of the contributions. Wish Allen Carr well even though I haven't read his book despite pressure from family. I am off the fags for 6 weeks now but don't consider myself a safe distance from them yet. Feel much better lately although have some side effects from quitting. Used smoke about 20 a day for the past 30 years. Glad to have picked up the courage to make a start and pray that I will prevail. I think Eamonn Dunphy's comment on the 'Late, Late' recently helped me a lot when he pointed out how stupid it is to smoke - health, cost, obnoxious habit etc. I feel the secret of quitting is to take it an hour, a day, at a time - excuse the cliche. At times I feel I'll flip if I don't have a smoke but by doing something, eating a piece of fruit or drinking a glass of water helps to distract my mind from my obsession. I often dream at night that I have given-in to my addiction and wake up very annoyed with myself only to realise that it was only a dream and I am relieved again. Six weeks and counting.
oh my God!!!! Allen Carr has lung cancer!!! my mam was told today that she has lung cancer. She gave up the fags 20yrs ago, yet she was told that smoking is the cause of this disease. I think she shouldnt have put herself through the withdrawl etc in my mind cos she going to get it anyway. Whats the results on chemo and surgery?