Many aspects of smoking awake the senses. I discovered this first hand through the process of writing this post. At first, I had asked, my “bestie” neighbor if I could borrow some smokes, but he didn’t believe me… and felt me harsh for asking. Determined and penny pinching, I stole from my sister’s quarters to buy myself a pack of butts. Wait a minute…I regress, I flashed back to 8th grade. But that is exactly what this experience in “cigarette mindfulness” did to me: Set up me up for an explosion of rewards for my senses and it took me back to 8th grade when I was a cigarette smoker.
Defiantly, I set out to get my own pack of butts. The purchasing of them, uneventful, but the memories once the pack hit hand came back like riding a bicycle. Pack in hand, I started packing by butts as if I never missed a beat! I was excited and into the pocket of my lightly downed jacket they slid, the shape instantly familiar and now all mine. Newly energized, I sprinted toward home.
The process of smoking mindfully is extremely rewarding rot the senses and an eye-opener. Using mindfulness and the knowledge of how our senses are driven by pleasure will show how cigarettes control us, through our senses, and in-turn control our actions. Yeah, right! Stay with me….
The five senses of perception: Sight, Sound, Touch, Smell & Taste. Getting in know each sense while smoking each cigarette, every single time a cigarette is ignited by fire, may help quell the urge to smoke. The reasoning is simple; by being more mindful of a behavior, one will have better control over actions. Back to my photoshoot…
Pack in pocket, my photoshoot of the antique bronze skull went like clockwork. Setting up the shoot, I turn into a full-service art director/stylist, set the stage for my cheap supermodels cancer sticks and prepare to open my cigarette pack and place them in my antique skull inkwell to get the shot. Now to begin my exercise in mindfulness…
Mindfully proceeding, I pull the invisible tab of floss to release the cellophane from the top of my Old Gold cigarette pack. Instantly I recall a fun fact from 8th grade: I use to use the bottom of the cellophane to carry weed “for a friend in need” before I quit the night after I imagined my demise at a set of train tracks. I continue slowly and mindfully, flipping the tilt lid of my cigarette top to reveal the foil covering. The aroma of tobacco hits me instantly and my sense of smell is overtaken. Yes, I am loving this moment. I want to join in and become a smoker. I move forward over the wave and the urge although it hits me hard and I contemplate more than twice if I should light up just one to get the full effect of all the senses including the sense of taste. Breathing in deeply, I continue and pull away the perfectly folded foil to reveal my line up of supermodels and there are still twenty! Some things do stay the same! I breath in their aroma and remember how easily cigarettes took me, hook, line, and sinker so quickly many years ago. Today, this is all for the greater good and I continue. I am amazed how all my senses have awoken to these wonderful cigarettes. I am mindfully amazed.
By the time the pack is open, my sense of touch, smell, sight and hearing have been alerted. Taste, with my stretched sense of addiction, has also had its ride. Another question has been answered which has long baffled me: Why so many million-fall prey to this addiction that kills so many. The rituals of smoking are all encompassing and include every one of our senses in every pack we purchase. Each time falling prey to the marketing which is perfectly packaged by the predator.
Success comes to those who recognize a negative addiction and replace it with a positive behavior, habit or motivation. Basic positive human behaviors will heal each other, and we can start with ourselves. Instead of smoking, kiss a loved one or stare into the eyes of children.
Mindfulness will get you everywhere you want to go. All one must do is become aware of one’s surroundings, movements and actions.
Practice makes perfect, that’s what they say, but not what we need, just betterment is what we seek.
One Moment, One Breath, One Second at a Time.