A serious voice on the other end sounded determined…..” I have a problem”.
What problem?
“I want to stop smoking”
OK. Why didn’t you?
“I can’t”
How do you know that?
“I tried and IT didn’t work”
What didn’t?
“I did IT again”
“I couldn’t stop myself”
From what?
“smoking again”
How many packs a day had you been smoking?
That’s expensive. You must really enjoy it.
“Yea. I do”
So why stop now?
“Its bad for me”
How do you know that?
“I can’t breathe and my wife says I smell like an ashtray”
Well. breathing can be aided with an oxygen tank. A bit clumsy but you get used to it, Taste buds get slaughtered so the taste is gone. Where is the problem?
“I want to get healthier, I want to run again and I want to get to the gym”
Okay. You get fit pushing that oxygen thing around. You can take it into the gym too, you know.
“No, No, No. This is ridiculous (he is getting mad). I want to stop.
Okay. So are you calling me so that I can do it for you? You want me to stop smoking for you. Is that right?
“No, No, No. I want you to help me to stop”
Are you sure? Its expensive and you may find yourself free of these cigarettes. You must convince me you are serious. I do not waste time with those who aren’t.
“I am, I am”.
Seriously serious?
Willing to do whatever it takes?
Okay. Agreeing to do absolutely EVERYTHING I tell you to do to stop now!
Okay, Bob. I will see you Friday next week (ten days from now). Between now and then, stay away from all cigarettes. I will ask you if you did. If you didn’t I will not take you on. I will know if you lied. Agreed?
(ten days later). Well Bob, are you ready to start?
Okay, let me ask you some preliminary questions. How many cigarettes had you smoked?
“You told me not to”
Okay. Take the time you didn’t and multiply it by ten. I will meet you again in ten weeks. Keep on doing what you are doing, and write me check now.