About Milos Stankovic

Currently on the quest...

Who is next?

Well, to quit smoking was much easier than I thought. I must say that I am very satisfied with results, and I really feel good about myself. That is maybe the best part, to see all others who tried and failed and I’m the one that succeeded. Now you are thinking that I’m a small man with no compassion and regard for well-being of other than myself, but hey, what can I say, quit smoking and join me. I’m just kidding:) My current confidence is result of being happy that I managed not to smoke for 25 days! You don’t need to congratulate me…Well, if you insist:)

I know that 25 days is nothing to many that have tried, that they endured much more, maybe three months, maybe six, but I’ll tell you this, every beginning is hard and every small victory should be celebrated and rewarded and because of that, I’ll celebrate my first month with my wife and I’ll take her to the cinema and after that ice-cream will do:) It’s small victory and the price will also be small.

During past two weeks, colleague of mine, who is well-informed of my progress as a non-smoker was trying to make me confess that I have secret stash of cigarettes and that in moments of weakness I smoke, because, that was his thing while he was trying to quit. I must say that he could not be more wrong! As I said before, take control of your actions, don’t put yourself into defensive position. Situations like this make me even more determined in my decision to quit smoking, almost I wish I have more similar situations:)

So, the next thing I will do is to start working out regularly. That is next item on my list. My decision is to have four trainings a week. That will be 48 trainings in three months. Why three months? Well, I decided that this period of time will be my trial, so in this period of time I MUST have this number of trainings done or I will, listen closely now, shave myself and leave those Hitler-like mustache and I’ll also make my hear look like Hitler’s and then I’ll take a photo and upload it here.

Reason for this is that I want to take this challenge seriously, because I tried earlier to workout regularly and it just didn’t worked out. But, if I succeed, I’ll reward myself with the trip to the Djavolja Varos, place of remarkable nature that I always wanted to see, on the south of my country, which I didn’t mentioned earlier, is Serbia.

Here is the picture of Djavolja Varos, which translated literally means Devil’s TownDjavolja Varos

and here is the link if you want to find out more about this beautiful sight.

I’ll take this promise seriously and if you think that I’m going to fail with this one, come back in three months and laugh at funny picture of a guy looking like Hitler and I’ll try that this does not happen. I’ll also track my progress here and make it public, so you see that I don’t cheat.

Tomorrow is training number one!

Is that it?

I can’t believe it’s just ten days since I last smoked and I don’t feel any desire to smoke again. Not even slightest! Maybe it’s just period when I don’t feel like smoking, maybe desire will return. I hope not. I don’t know how to explain this, I thought it will be much harder, but somehow it’s not. I realized that I feel more relived than I feel I’m struggling not to smoke. I was thinking about to quit smoking long before I actually did, maybe this is the reason that I feel so relived.

I don’t even think about it anymore. Only when I see someone smoking, I need to smoke, but it even easier to look to the other side, much easier than only five days ago. I try to preoccupy myself with many other things. It helps me not to think about smoking. I wasn’t thinking what I was doing while I was smoking, I did it automatically, like so many things I do in my life.

I read somewhere  that soldiers in some unit of american army always look in front of themselves, even when they go to lunch, so they are concentrated on the thing they do in that moment. That may sound radical to you, but in essence it’s just the thing you need to quit smoking, to do anything.

You need to be focused and determined to do the thing you want to do, in my case, quit smoking.  Like when you workout in the gym, you can workout to pump your brain and your will, so you can go with ease through out hard situations. The best thing about this is that you don’t need to say yes, you only need to say no. You don’t need to build up some new great, healthy habits, just rid of  the bad ones.

Practice. One day, when you feel like smoking, just don’t. When you feel like eating that big, sweet, greasy donut, just don’t! Don’t eat late, let that bastard(your stomach…) purr, just fall asleep. You see, you don’t need to build new habit, just change existing ones. Indulge yourself sometimes, and eat two donuts. You see it’s not about donuts, it’s about training your will, it’s important that it is what you want. Strong you, not weak part of you. Don’t feel bad about it. One day you smoke cigarette,some other day just don’t. Play like that, but make sure it’s what you want and you will build your power of will.

I have a friend that quit smoking three years ago, and he smoked three packs of cigarettes a day! Now he doesn’t smoke! Can you believe it? But I saw him once, when there was a party that he lit up a cigarette, he smoked up one half an he put it away. And that was it, simple example of control. You can eat big peace of cake every once in a while, but don’t do it regularly, get control!

I practice every day and it’s quite fun. The fun part is the one where you can just feel that control, you don’t feel week, you are deciding what you are going to do when the choice appears. And in that moment you can actually feel the power, but be aware of that moment  in which you are deciding and I’m sure you’ll do the right thing.

Here are some things you should be aware of in your life. Just think about one from the list and maybe it will help you to start making decisions you really want.

Challenge accepted!

Best way to test your character is to sit with your friends in some pub where everybody, including you is drinking beer, but everybody but you is smoking!
Real test! Most of the time spent there I was feeling strong desire to smoke, but every time that I felt it was critical, I mentioned that to my friends and they were very supportive.

Every time I thought I could light one, I started talking about smoking with my friends. Almost everybody that smokes has at least once tried to quit smoking, so everyone has some story about it. Interesting is that everyone that I told that I quit smoking, told me about time period that I need to endure so I’m sure I won’t start again.

These periods are from two weeks to one year, and then I was wondering, if it’s only two weeks, why is so hard? I think that, more than the time period, is important power of will and your decision to quit smoking. Since I quit smoking I was able to be in the same room with the people that are smoking without me lighting a cigarette, there is desire, but there is also will!

One thing that I figure out that is really helpful is every time that I feel desire to smoke, I say ‘to hell with it, give me one cigar!’, then I wait for a moment, to see reactions on my friends faces, how they become serious, and I say ‘I’m kidding!’, even though it’s not funny. In that moment everyone is relived. That’s because, once you passed the first sarcastic remarks about you quitting once more, and people start to believe that you really are, they are becoming very supportive of your goal.

That is actually great! You don’t need to go through that struggle alone! You have friends, family, call them, make them go through your big battle with you, you will have a support, and they will feel more important that you can rely on them. It’s a win-win situation!

I have realized that this quest of mine to quit smoking has been great mental exercise and once that I’m sure that I won’t smoke anymore, I can actually apply same principal to achieve everything I want (ok, not everything…), but I think you shouldn’t try multiple goals at once if you are just starting, because you don’t want to burden yourself with too big of a challenge.

Test yourself, it’s a wonderful game!

It’s not easy, I can tell you that

It’s been five days since I lit my last cigar, and I miss it. But not all the time! I miss it in time of my lunch break, after work, while I drink my beer… Today, after my eight hours of hard work, just fifteen minutes before end of work hours, I got strong feeling that I need a cigarette.

Such a strong feeling, that I started drooling, but then I thought of how good it felt these five days not smoking, breathing clearly, not getting that whistling in my lungs, not getting that taste in my mouth like I swallowed an ash tray.

So, last five days I resisted my urge to light a cigarette, and it wasn’t actually that hard. Maybe because of my strong decision to quit and that I shared that decision with people close to me, I am now more confident than ever that it is over with my smoking days.

Yeah, you’ll see… is probably what some experienced smoker is thinking now. You’ll see after couple of days when your enthusiasm subsides and you start thinking about inhaling that smoke, that tasty flavor that will bring tranquility like nothing else in the world.

I feel like I see both sides of the medal now. Like that moment of revelation when you just know what to do next. I know that I have difficult period in front of me, but somehow I don’t feel intimidated by that.

I think most people that try to quit smoking put themselves into defensive position, trying just not to light up their next cigar. I think that is why lots of people fail in their intention, and I’m not talking about smoking only. I am talking here about every hard situation that people find themselves into.

You can stop smoking by not lighting next cigarette, you can also win the game by scoring penalty kick as gift from the referee in the last seconds of the game. Yes, you can do this. But you can also win by 5:0 leaving no doubt what outcome will game have, you can also quit smoking with style, with confidence, with the sense of pride!

I am talking this because I’ve been there before, trying to quit, telling my wife I’m done, but then I started smoking again. I felt so small in her eyes, like I let her down. You know what I lost that day? Part of her respect! And trust me, you want your partner to respect you, it’s a basis for a good relationship.

Regain the trust, earn the respect!

To the trenches. Kill the enemy!

Time has come for me to start working on my first goal from the bucket list. You know how people from my first post God damn it! Do something!, who are talking about achieving various goals in your life, are always pointing out how important is never to quit while striving towards  your goals. Well, there is one thing that many have tried to achieve, but few actually got there, and the only thing you need to do is… to actually quit! You probably know what I am talking about. Smoking!

This nasty habit that you probably picked up while you were in high school or college, probably to look cooler, stayed, although you are not in high school or college any more. Now you have small rituals built on this habit, you need one with your coffee, one after lunch, one when you get off the bus, one after work, many when you get out, and if there is no non smoking police at your work, god knows how many cigarettes you smoke a day!

Sounds familiar? This is my story, short one. I started on my first year of college and it was an act of rebellion. You see, during my first year of college, I was all about studying and good grades and so on.. but I neglected my social life, I didn’t have one actually and I got tired at the end of the school year and at that time I made some new friends, started going out with them and that was my period of liberation, and one of the things that liberation of mine brought was smoking. And it felt so good!

Seven years have gone since then and I’m still smoking. Now I buy one pack every two days, and although you might think that is not much, it is, I don’t even want to think how someone that smokes two packs a day feels… Your fingers always have that awful smell,  the clothes also, your sense of smell is gone, you breathe harder, your heart is beating like hell even when you try to catch the bus or when you climb the stairs, and you put up with all that just because of some habit?! No more!

This is how the lungs of one non-smoker and one smoker look like

Healthy and smokers lungs

Not much of a difference, ha? I know that many people don’t care of their health until something actually starts to hurt. Well, if your health is not good enough reason for you, you can always count how much money you spend every month, every year… You would be surprised that you could actually go on two week vacation with that money. Still not good enough? What your family and friends think about it, your girlfriend, your husband, how about your child? Do you feel guilty smoking in the same room where your child is playing? No? It does not matter, as long as you find one reason to quit, that’s good, that is all you need.

As a non-smoker, you don’t need to tell smoker all this, he already knows. But what keeps them smoking, what keeps me smoking? Habit! When I go to work, I change three buses. I smoke one cigar while I wait the first one, then the second one, I maybe skip the third one, but there is another one before I enter the building where my office is. That is three or four cigarettes before nine o’clock in the morning! There is one before and one after lunch at 12:30 and one after work, and two more on my way home. That’s a lot! When I get out, I can smoke entire pack for that evening. I don’t want to do this any more!

That is the same routine every day. I even light up my cigarettes at the exactly same spots. So, since it is a habit, I will change it, I will kill it! I read somewhere that you need to  prepare, to be ready when you get that craving for a little smoke. One thing I liked and I think is simple enough is eating nuts. It keeps your hands and your mouth busy, similar to cigarettes. I’ll try this and let you know how it goes? And one more thing, for the last two days, I have smoked only three cigars, I stopped buying the packs and those cigarettes that I smoked were offered to me by my colleague and my wife, I was weak to refuse.

I won’t be the next time!

God damn it! Do something!

I recently start following Blog of impossible things and I must say that I always get excited when I find new blog of someone successful, describing their success and sharing their wisdom. Those blogs usually describe most important steps in process of achieving something bigger, getting life you always  wanted, getting free, quitting your job, move to exotic island and so on. Get the money!!!

You probably guess that I’m one of those people that follows that kind of sites looking for self improvement and way to make more money, build those six pack and quit smoking but never actually do something about it. You are right! It is always easier to find new niche  blog than to move your ass. One thing I really like about those sites is that when I find it I get moral boost for a few days, I suddenly get new ideas, I move fast, I talk fast, all I want to talk is my great ideas, how easy is to actually change, that only one tiny step is all you need to get you on that great adventure called “Life to remember!”. So, I’m preaching someone else’s story and believing  it for a few days and then everything goes away. I guess I suffer from Shiny Object Syndrome.

It says that people who suffer from this syndrome are always starting something new and never finish the thing they started. And it says that most of people is suffering from this syndrome. I realized this some time ago and since then I was trying to change something, but all that I’ve done till now is sharing dozen of my ideas with couple of friends. Oh yes, I have plenty of ideas, some of them are actually pretty  good, at least people that I talked to think they are. Now you are wondering what the hell is keeping me from doing something?

I guess the thing that keeps most of people from doing anything, above mentioned syndrome. Reason why am I writing this is to start that adventures life of which those wise people from the Internet are talking about. They also say that you need to keep it simple, one thing at the time. This is my first step! I’ll do what they do. I’ll make a list of things that I want to change and achieve and I’ll write about that. We’ll see where will that lead me. One important thing is that I would really appreciate  if you would come with me on this journey of becoming someone better! It is always easier when someone is around you when things get difficult.

First step made!