Red Devils, Unexpected Bites, and Quitting smoking

  1. Red Devils and Quitting

I hated using a red-devil lure as a kid.  I thought it was the least effective lure – no Williams Warbler or Mepps Fly or Rapala.  It was a cheap knock off lure, and I didn’t catch anything with one.  It was the lure I used when I wanted to go use one that I wouldn’t care if I snagged it and lost it.

That is, until the biggest fish I ever caught as a kid – a 17 pound Northern Pike – decided it wanted to bite on my red devil lure.

Smoking cessation – the act of stopping smoking, is one of the hardest things some people do – others find it easy. The only truth about quitting smoking is that everyone is different. I have never actually smoked, so I don’t have the ability to speak directly about the quitting experience.

The most successful way to quit smoking is, for most people, a combination of medications and behavior change. Basically, medications can take away some of the short term physical effects of quitting, and treat the chemical dependence. Behaviour therapy is a way of making sure that you are aware of all of the cues that trigger you to smoke, and preparing you for them. – for some people, it’s when they speak on the phone, for others, it may be when they drive, or when they have a drink, or when they go out with friends. For people who are going out fishing, it may be when they are in a boat, or when they are waiting for the fish to bite, staring at their bobber/float.

Each time quitting brings people one time closer to quitting for good. Some people decide to quit once, and then stay quit, while the majority quit 3,4,5 or 6 times before quitting for good.

Something I often hear from patients is “I tried drug x before, quess it didn’t work because I’m still smoking!” or “I tried the patch, but it didn’t work” etc. etc. Quitting is difficult even with medications, and takes a mix of attitude, medications, and planning. If quitting didn’t work with drux x (Champix/Chantix, nicotine patches, Zyban etc.), it can still be tried again at a different time – they increase the chance of quitting, they don’t guarantee it. This would be like saying “I tried to catch a fish with a red devil before, but I didn’t catch any, therefore I’m never using it again…. It may be a perfectly good lure, but there needs to be technique, a good cast, some patience, and (most importantly) – fish. Things need to line up usually to catch a fish, just like things need to line up to quit smoking for good.