If you were to ask yourself what are the most effective ways to quit smoking, you’d probably lean towards going cold turkey, patches, vaping, etc. However, quitting smoking is a war of the mind and starts with self-awareness. Once you become more aware of your thoughts and surroundings, it becomes easier to address the sabotage in our subconscious programming. Meditation disentangles the knots of sabotage. It forms a part of mindfulness and can be done in any space, allowing you to collect your thoughts and let go of the negative energies and emotions which accumulate so quickly. If this simple process works for you, then great, but taming nicotine cravings is tough and you might need a regular guided meditation for quitting smoking. But meditating like this might not be ideal for everyone, so let’s find something which works for you.
Quit Smoking With Meditation – But Which Ones?
A Google search reveals conflicting numbers of meditation types you can choose; 5 types, 23 types, 9 types, 12 types – who would have thought it could be this hard agreeing about the same thing? You can get a better overview of the different meditations from Healthline, but let’s examine what are the most effective ways to quit smoking with meditation.
Guided Meditation for Quitting Smoking
Guided meditation is when a teacher or narrator leads the meditation, either in a class or through an audio program. The benefit of a guided meditation is the instruction you receive gives the meditation purpose to reach a specific outcome. Typically, a guided meditation would be conducted by a meditation professional, someone for you who would know how to quit smoking spiritually using their meditation expertise. Whether guided or unguided, consistency is the key with meditation. You may find you get better results in a meditation class or from an audio format. Generally though, regular guided meditation will develop your skills to a point where your private meditations will become very powerful. At that stage, being able to quit smoking with meditation crosses from being a desire to being achieved.
The practice of mindfulness is a good starting point to quit smoking with meditation because you choose the environment where you will reflect within your thoughts. Over time, this purposeful intent allows your mind to flow and unlock suppressed thoughts and feelings. That doesn’t mean you’ll experience a bevy of hidden memories, but it does encourage a connection with thoughts, events, and emotions which are typically buried under the weight of daily living. This meditation is simple to do and easy to incorporate daily.
Vispassana is a meditation practice developed in India 2500 years ago. Modern mindfulness movements have been shaped by the foundations of Vispassana, however, it’s a more intense meditation and focuses on breathing and calmness, and the relationship between the mind and body. If you’ve been practicing mindfulness meditation, then graduating to Vispassana will be the next step in how to quit smoking spiritually. Typical Vispassana courses run for 10 days at a retreat – it’s intense. There’s no drinking or smoking allowed, so in terms of giving up weed, don’t do the course unless you can commit to being clean for this time period, and are confident with basic meditation. A four-year study found a 20% drop in drug use for addicts who took up Vispassana, a significant endorsement for meditation in overcoming weed dependency and addiction.
Loving-Kindness is the more generic Western description given to metta meditation, a Buddhist meditation. As the name suggests, loving-kindness meditation focuses on self-love and kindness, particularly self-compassion. Using loving-kindness meditation for quitting weed is powerful, particularly if your efforts to quit weed are always hampered by self-disappointment and judgement. The meditation encourages you to adopt a mindset of forgiveness, appreciation, trust, and love towards yourself and others. Using loving-kindness to build your daily outlook enables you to switch from self-directed anger and abuse, to tolerance and forgiveness. Removing the anger and harmful self-dialogue associated with your weed dependency lifts the veil on the negative factors which drew you to weed to begin with. Replacing bitter self-talk with compassion and understanding robs your insecurities of the fuel they use to perpetuate a cycle of lighting up, then beating yourself up for it. Loving-kindness works well as a guided meditation for quitting smoking as you develop tolerance towards yourself and others across all aspects of living.
What Are the Most Effective Ways to Quit Smoking With Meditation?
With all these different options to choose from, how do you know which is best? The different meditation practices we’ve listed are a few of the many to choose from, proven unguided and guided meditations for quitting smoking. But meditation can be anything. This means the meditative elements – shifting focus from the society surrounding us to a connection with ourselves through earth, wind, water, and fire – can be replicated in any activity. The key is to find an activity that works for you and “spiritualise” it in some way, turn your awareness towards it as a tool for connecting with yourself.
What Activities Can I Do?
My personal activity is swimming. I do it for exercise, but it also connects me with the water, surrounding my body and absorbing me. It removes me from the burdens of daily living. My arms and legs are moving, but this is muscle memory. My mind is elsewhere, admiring the sensation of the water, and ruminating over things I want to achieve, big and small, and challenges I face. And sometimes I’m not thinking at all, I’m just enjoying the moment. For you, it could be walking or running in a park, riding a bike, yoga, cooking, reading in a hammock, sculpting, painting, or any other form of creating – the key is to be absorbed in the activity, allowing its manipulation of the elements to be a part of you. Find an activity that moves you other than smoking, and use it to clear your mind. This is the first step in how to quit smoking spiritually and in conditioning your mind to the benefits of meditation.
Repetition is King
Whatever meditation you choose, keep doing it. If you want to quit smoking with meditation, then you’ll need to be consistent. It may seem hard at first, but have you ever tried something you couldn’t master and then one day it just clicked? Make meditation one of those click activities, and keep doing it. Your mind is the most powerful weapon against nicotine dependency and meditation is your mind’s gymnasium.