What is your biggest phobia and how have you gone about conquering it?

I am not afraid of demons, heights, water, confined places or anything else but the biggest phobia of my life was “will I ever be able to stop smoking”. So today, I am going to tell you my story how I mastered this phobia and conquered it to the extent that now I sit and party with people who are chain smokers but there is not a single instinct inside me of smoking again. It was on September 1st, 2011 when I joined a new organization changing over to a digital publishing solutions group from a medical transcription organization. Everything was going on fine and I was smoking my 8 to 9 cigarettes per day for last 14 years. I always wanted to give my family a better future and at the time I knew that “smoking” is the foremost hurdle in front of me but I was afraid of “quitting smoking”. It was not that I never tried to leave this habit but I failed several times when I did it in the past years. The promises to my wife, every time I thought of quitting smoking, went in vain.

But when you start to think over for a better life, God helps you and the same happened with me. At my office, I used to take several breaks in a day to go and smoke outside and my new manager never liked it. This kept on happening on a daily basis but my really bad habit of smoking never stopped me from going out again.

Nicorette at local grocery shops in Delhi, India
Nicorette at local grocery shops in Delhi, India | Source
Stop smoking with Nicorette - Shot in a chemist shop in Rajouri Garden
Stop smoking with Nicorette - Shot in a chemist shop in Rajouri Garden | Source
Nicorette stop smoking cigarettes with chewing gum
Nicorette stop smoking cigarettes with chewing gum | Source
How to chew Nicorette gum for best results?
How to chew Nicorette gum for best results? | Source
Nicorette packs are easily available in Delhi . You can also quit this bad habit. (March Challenge - Hub #2/30)
Nicorette packs are easily available in Delhi . You can also quit this bad habit. (March Challenge - Hub #2/30) | Source

One day on a weekend, I was shopping outside in a prominent shopping mall in Delhi when my wife stopped by at a chemist and bought a pack of Nicorette chewing gums (2 mg). She gave one gum to me and I chewed it when we were in a ladies footwear store. After chewing this gum for the first time in my life, I said laughing, “how this gum will help anyone leave cigarettes as they are good for nothing” but it was within 5 minutes of saying that I realized my chest and throat had tightened up and I started feeling dizziness and anxiety. Then another minute, my throat and chest area began to start burning inside like I am drinking some acid. After having this feeling, I thought to throw away that gum but stopped as I thought, “let me see what will happen now”. Just 2 minutes after this, I started getting “hiccups” and those were not light and were like when we eat really spicy food or something. I got outside the store, bought a bottle of mineral water, and drank it till the hiccups stopped. My wife asked me smiling, “so how was your first-time experience with this. In a depressed tone, I told her, “too bad”.

Believe me this was my first step towards quitting cigarettes. It was on October 5, 2011 a day before my daughter’s birthday. I wanted to give her this gift on her birthday so I didn’t break my wife’s promise this time. Next day, I got to my office and didn’t take a single break and whenever I felt like smoking, I started chewing that gum. I knew that if I will go outside, “I will buy a cigarette again”.

In this way, I stopped smoking cigarettes. Although the whole period of my “quit smoking campaign” was really troublesome but I love it now as I am able to break free of this fear. I went through involuntary eye twitching, calf pain, headaches, increased heart beats at times, cold and flu but I knew that all these will go away once I am able to leave this bad habit. Since that day, once I come to my office, I never go outside my office premises. It has already been 5 months now and I am happy that I am not only able to conquer but master the biggest phobia of my life. Plus I am able to give increased productivity at my office, copyediting maximum journals in a day which is helping me boost my career.

Rajouri Garden Market in Delhi - My lucky place where I chewed my first chewing gum and smoked my last cigarette. You can also use this and break free.
Rajouri Garden Market in Delhi - My lucky place where I chewed my first chewing gum and smoked my last cigarette. You can also use this and break free.

More by this Author


Comments 13 comments

tsmog profile image

tsmog 4 years ago from Escondido, CA

Very informative hub on a poignant subject. I am enthused with the theory or fact it is a phobia. I like the solution(s) offered while presenting hope with your adventure. Hits close to home for sure. Friends will enjoy this post and I may place it in printed format on a desk at work. We are both dancing with the idea of change today.


soni2006 profile image

soni2006 4 years ago from New Delhi, India Author

Thanks a lot tsmog. I am glad that you found my hub useful. I always thought that sharing your story in a way can have a positive impact on others so that they can also reap some benefits by applying different ideas in their life.


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

Congratulations on quitting smoking. I've know quite a few people that have used Nicorette and have had much success with this gum.


Gordon Hamilton profile image

Gordon Hamilton 4 years ago from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom

Well done, soni. I know how tough it is. I was once off cigarettes for almost a year and went back to them - so don't let your guard down! Keep going. Sadly, I am smoking heavier and heavier these days and am presently on anything from forty to sixty a day. I don't think it's a phobia of quitting I have but it's an interesting thought for me to ponder...


soni2006 profile image

soni2006 4 years ago from New Delhi, India Author

Thank you so much Just Ask Susan. Now I would like to help more people quit this dangerous fear of their life.


Debby Bruck profile image

Debby Bruck 4 years ago

Hello Soni ~ I love the way you told your story. I'm still going to ask you one question. What was the phobia? Were you afraid something might happen if you quit smoking? Were you afraid something might happen if you continued to smoke? Did you think you would be very sick if you stopped smoking, or wouldn't be able to work anymore? I'm still not sure I understand the 'phobia' part of this story. Blessings and Stay Healthy with no cigarettes, Debby


soni2006 profile image

soni2006 4 years ago from New Delhi, India Author

Gordon my dear it's your phobia that if you will quit what's going to happen. Let yourself off this bad thing Gordon. You are a nice friend and would like to be with you and smoking so many cigarettes is really really harmful. Now don't think I am just trying to give some lecture or something and I am saying this just because I always took it like a lecture and never followed the advice of other people or I would have left this bad habit many years back. Currently, I am facing hyperacidity problem because of smoking. I know that it will not go away once I start working out on a daily basis and that's also extreme one in the gym, not at home.


soni2006 profile image

soni2006 4 years ago from New Delhi, India Author

Yes Debbie you are right. I always thought that if I will quit then i will have some problems. Might be I am a psycho but frankly this fear factor always put obstacles in my path of quitting smoking.


Marcy Goodfleisch profile image

Marcy Goodfleisch 4 years ago from Planet Earth

Congratulations on quitting! This is an inspiring hub - I hope others will read it and get the courage to stop that deadly habit! I like the way you shared what you felt and tasted, and your decision process along the way. Voted up and awesome.


Debby Bruck profile image

Debby Bruck 4 years ago

I am starting to understand. Many people fear that if they quit smoking they will gain weight, then they will be ugly and unwanted and look unappealing.

For you, possibly you would go crazy without the calming effects of holding and smoking a cigarette. The fear factor in not smoking, after smoking for 14 years would be a type of dependency on this soothing habit.

The withdrawal symptoms came out clearly, that the cigarettes provided some kinds of drugs to your system, and maybe those chemicals were producing the fear factors of addiction.

Still learning, because each person has their own reason for starting and continuing to smoke. Be well, Debby


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 4 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

What a fabulous gift to give to your daughter and to YOU!

Congratulations on choosing to extend your life-- you have made one of the best decisions ever, for an awesome reason...voted UP & UABI, mar.


soni2006 profile image

soni2006 4 years ago from New Delhi, India Author

Thank you so much for your good wishes Marcy, Debby, marcoujor. Yes I have gained 3 to 4 kgs since I left cigarettes. My appetite has increased and I have less control on hunger but I will reduce my weight again like I did in the year 2008 with proper exercise and meal planning. This is one of the most important reasons why people have phobia of quitting smoking. They think that they will put up more weight and look ugly but this is not true. Though I have put up little weight but I look much younger than before. When I was a teenager, my lips were pink and cheeks red like girls but then after smoking they turned black and hard due to the tar but slowly they are turning soft again. I am not sure if my lips will turn pink again but would love if they will. haahahahahaaaaaaaa........


mxion716 profile image

mxion716 4 years ago

yeah i know that i really don't like people chating with me so yeah...................

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working