give up addictions

In answer to some 2013 apps questions on how i actually gave up on
drink and cigarettes, I locked myself in the house for three weeks
solid, and got my mate to get me food and drink from the shops
each day. Then crawled up the walls until I felt able to come
outside and cope with the world at large.
This may seem a bit drastic, but it surely worked.
I have never had a drop of drink or a puff of smoke since.
i had overcome diptheria when three, polio when 6, badly broken
plated and pinned leg when 21.
So I knew when i put my mind to something I could overcome it.
Besides which I knew that i'd sailed too close now to the wind for too long
i'd had pancreatitis 9 times, four of which led to intensive care
and every time hospitalised I was catheterised, and had tubes and drips
all over the place
you get fed up of all the pain and depression, plus realise
you REALLY MIGHT DIE. Sort of good incentives to stop
The text below is original 2003 to 2005, i thought that i might prefix it now
with a somewhat hopeful start, as I'm still alive, well
and playing golf
A friend of mine Tony J. read this through for me and suggested I outline
his viewpoint. He goes religiously to Alcoholics Anonymous, and swears
by it. He was dry for 20 years and only fell off the wagon when he stopped
going, assuming himself "cured". He pulled himself together again 3 months
later, and has been attending meetings now successfully for another 18 years.
He also gave me a phrase that may resonate here, "willpower dissolves in drink"
paraphrased "you need wontpower not willpower"
Here you have two approaches from both of us. I just rely on my own
stubbornness to be enough. In Tony's he finds that though he is just as
tough, if not tougher than myself mentally, that having like minded people around him
helps to share the load.
Either way round, we both play a decent standard of golf now,
(Tony more decent than me),
and have both been dry and smokeless over ten years.
You could be too if you want it enough
whether alone or in group therapy
It is the genuine wanting to quit that makes you quit.
Not saying "i genuinely want to quit so bad"
But WANTING to quit so bad
Words are cheap, deeds get it done

Good luck to you all out there worldwide.

2003 original
The guidelines below are certainly effective if you really want to give up some addiction, it gives you a structured way forward to oppose the affliction you have chosen for yourself. However, most of these addictions are the effect, not the root cause. Granted, once in the grip of the effect it is hard to overcome on its own, but the root cause is usually where you should be starting off. It is usually due to a lowering in your own vision of your self worth, and your attempt to ward off these thoughts by temporarily confining them to oblivion. Fact is at the end of the day, your root problem is still there and you have an addiction to cope with as well. Even if the root cause is addressed and cured, often the addiction is hard to overcome on its own, but if the root cause is not seen to, then it will re emerge, and all the effort of will in overcoming your addiction will be thrown away, and with it some of the will to fight it again. Some people seem
to spend their lives shifting from job to next job, or trailing around the world, or location to next location in the country,
that is more often than not in a hope that the new place or scenario seen, or people, will seem better and accept you better
than where you are at present, where you seem to be in a rut or not too popular or seem a bit of a square peg
in a round hole, a misfit or misunderstood. Sometimes that is true, often however it is how you are
projecting yourself to others, and interacting with others where the problems really lie, and the solution is
not to keep continually on the move to be one step ahead, as the only thing you will be one step ahead of is
yourself, and it is only self you are fooling, as others see you much as you are wherever you are, unless you fundamentally change.
You cant hide from yourself for ever and may need to face up to some unpleasant truths to be more accepted,
and change your whole outlook on life to be genuinely liked instead of generally disliked.

For example, you may be prone to telling lies. People will shun you over the years because of this. You may feel isolated and turn to drink or drugs, but the real problem is to stop lying and let people like you. Or maybe you have been bullied or abused when younger, or had a grim divorce, bereavement or acrimonious split. All of these at best make you doubt in yourself, or the future or in your own ability to cope. Drink drugs and gambling plus eating etc provide temporary relief or oblivion, but the cause was the bullying, death, divorce, split or whatever TRIGGERED off the abusive behavior. Some of us are more prone to excessive behavior than others, for example I went to Grammar School, where expectations were high both at home and at school, and you were taught to perform everything to 250 per cent effort, so it is not hard to see why a great proportion of ex Grammar Schoolboys have serious addictive and suicidal tendencies, if they always perceive themselves under achieving they cant do anything much less than to excess, obsessive. I have friends who are dyslexic who have had a grim time through school, and come out thinking they are somehow not up to scratch, when often their iq is huge. These examples just exemplify the why in addictive behavior. I have had to slow down and try to do things conforming to a more normal pace, others will have to look at themselves with an honest eye, not through rose coloured specs, and see the problem, as in the original problem, before they can cure the addiction. If you have nailed your problem these guidelines below will work probably for good, if not at least it will help you try to lose an additional problem so you can more easily deal with the real problem. The one main thing is you have to really WANT to stop. And only YOU can. I also find that I see this as phase that went hand in glove with a problem. Now the problem is gone, then it is no longer a phase of my lifestyle I need any more. The trick is to face life not run away from it, as its there whenever you re surface anyway, and its enough without additional addictions to cope with as well. Friends and relatives can only support, you have to do the eventual doing.

There are many ways of stopping addictive behavior, but the main way to cure the cause of it is to face up to what you are running away from in the first place, often brutally reassessing who you REALLY are to others.

I am reformed confirmed drinker. I am reformed chain smoker.
I am an ex fat person. I am also not selling anything.
My only wish now is to help people by passing on my
knowledge, I guess this sounds too good here to be true.
When you have really nearly died a few times, money
takes on a sort of reduced role in your thinking.
Make no mistake about it, we are all going to die,
even you will die one day. When you are relatively young this
seems a long way away, Im fifty now, and it
sure seems a little closer to hand than it did.
So it makes sense to make the time I have left
quality time, free of drink, smoking, and extreme fatness,
after all it is easier to get older if you feel fitter,
than if you are ruining your body daily.
I wish that I had started earlier in life, but you can, now.

You may think I have superhuman will power to
give up drinking and smoking, gambling and all
other excesses. To a certain extent that is true enough,
I have a great deal of will power, but I also have
now a method, way of thinking, which helps.

For some reason, and it may have been a good
one at the time, you have this craving, an overpowering
addiction. You love something more than you now
love yourself or anyone else at the present time.

Think myself or else my health.

In this New Labour, Tony Blair, type world,
certainly in Britain, everything is explainable in terms
of something else more convenient. It does not detract
from the plain fact that the Emperor really has not got
any clothes on at all. In short, its not stretching the
truth, its really telling a very big lie.

that is what you are currently doing to yourself,
living out a lie in order to placate yourself,
in order to make what you are doing palatable.
What you are really doing is killing yourself a
lot quicker, and lot more painfully than is
really necessary, and no one gives
a damn whether you do or you do not,
they are too busy with themselves to really and
truly bother about YOU. By and large that is correct.
The few people that possibly do care either have not
a clue how to help, or are simply hampered by the
realisation that it is only you who can cure it.

There are really no excuses
If you are drinking too much you are this pain of a wino.
If you are smoking too much you are this pain of a smoker.
If you are gambling too much you are this liability,
just as you are if you are on drugs, in fact you will
only start to think of giving up anything when you have
completely run out of people who will subsidise your habit,
the very people who care about you and who you
gradually alienate until you are all alone.

You probably nodded to all this, and felt agreement,
so why dont you realise that you are putting an intolerable
strain on the people around you, to say nothing of the
strain on the Health Professionals.


Because you are too self indulgent to stop for a minute
enjoying yourself to see if you are bothering other people,
too wrapped up in yourself to care about others.
There is no magic formula to giving up an addiction,
You stop doing what it is that forever is costing you, and every
one around you their fortunes. You stop paying out what you
havent got, on things YOU DONT REALLY NEED.

To break that down further, in order to do this you will
need to change your whole way of life, permanently.
Make no mistake, if you are really and truly HAPPY
with what you are doing, then fine, go ahead and do it,
but acknowledge that most things you really enjoy
overdoing kill you slowly, and painfully, plus most things
done to excess bring attendant guilt.
Stop reading now if you dont want to quit for good and
all or else you are wasting someone elses bandwidth who
has what it takes when you have not got the moral fibre.
What it takes is a modicum of will power combined with
a hell of a lot of common sense. I have had a lot of addictions,
I am an excessive natured person. I find the first step in
losing any of them is to look at them as this phase I have
grown out of. I have matured to such an extent I no
longer need their crutch to carry me onwards.

Generally speaking, most addictions are to make up
for or act as distraction from the world as it is.
We have to face up to life instead of running
away from it, and hiding behind false barriers built
up on the shaky foundations of fleeting happiness
bought at great actual and mental cost via addiction.

We have to move on and grow up and mature,
Much as we ourselves look at kids and feel,
thats wrong, but theyll grow out of it in time.
And they usually do, because they see
that long term they are better off without doing what
they are doing.
Why dont we tell them that at the time.
Because we know theyll tend to do the opposite,
and that only they can learn to be wise in the fullness
of time. We can but advise, and sow the seeds.

Thus it is with ourselves.

We have established that we can expect NO HELP
FROM OTHERS. Why should anyone else help us
anyway, its our problem. If someone came to you with
Ive got a terrible problem with my lawyer, and my cat isnt
eating, my mother in law is being funny and Ive got
the results of my x rays tomorrow, you might well be
a little concerned, but I bet your first thought would
really and truly be, how can I get away as quickly now as
I possibly can without causing offence.

So why the hell should others be expected to listen on to you
bleating about helping you to quit your problem.


Also you will never stop doing anything you really LIKE
DOING. You have to really want to stop for good and ever,
not just when you attain that certain level, because you will
only gradually go back to what you were before, a PAIN.

If you hear a confirmed drinker say after one year off the booze
Im ok for a pint now, what do you REALLY think
will happen if he or she has a pint or short.
You know that answer without me telling you.

So really you have to

a Realise it is just you that matters and does anything
b realise you have to really WANT to quit
c Realise no one else is going to do it for you magically.
d realise that it was a phase you had to live through
e realise that it will definitely kill you, very painfully
f realise that you will have gained from your descent into hell

There are many ways to quit addictions for different people.
If you are reading this they have probably all failed.


MOST of the methods work if you WANT them to work.
I suggest that you treat it as phase of your life, and
you have learned from this phase and wish to move on
and prove to everyone that you arent stupid. Because
anyone who knows that something is killing them
and alienating people, and still does it, is stupid,
has not learned one iota from what they have done
and have not progressed one jot in their mindset.

Water, pure little tap water, fills you up and
is needed more than you think. Eighty per cent of
the human body is water, so it makes sense to drink it.
that is a good start to purifying your body and mind.
Drink a few litres a day. KEEP BUSY.
Also try and exercise, it combats depression.

Remember, I make zero money out of this article,
but it is probably the best common sense youll ever

Most articles you will read have a hidden secret agenda,
If you quit forever, theyd lose your
money in the predictible future.
They plan on you quitting EVERY YEAR.
Why not just do it now ONCE. I sure as hell would not
want to quit smoking and drinking on a yearly basis


Just get to have a few more people visiting my website,
if you stop for a second or two to read this article,
as I get a kick out of getting visitors from all over the world,
and seeing my site visitor numbers rise.
I guess you could think of it as an obsession,
or a phase Ill probably grow out of in time

But it is also very nice if you can help people, and Ive
been places you really do not want to go, and had things
done to me at intensive care you really and truly

We all KNOW what we should and definitely shouldnt be doing,
and no one can make a difference but ourselves.

It is a sad fact of modern life that everyone expects to be
able to do what the hell that they like and then someone will
bail them out at the last minute.

Fact is, if you dont quit soon, youll die young, in pain, and alone.


but you WILL die sooner than most.

Malcolm Pugh, Webmaster, May 2003.

Since writing this article I have lost 2.5 stone, turned to golf and am winning at that,
rebuilt a life together with a partner who helped me when I was a drinker,smoker,fat person
but even she got fed up in the end. Now we are back together.

I drive an old jag and write my website and try to help others.

This may now help you as that is genuine fact.

1. I dont even think of a drink, I dont ever want one.
2. I often want a cigarette, but never heve one.
3. I have lost over 2.5 stone and am fit.
4. I have overcome ALL the mental and physical problems
doctors said i never would, save an irregular heartbeat, that I am working on still.
addendum 2011 december
heartbeat now steady despite heart attack in 2009
down to 5 handicap at golf
down 3 stone since originally writing this
it can be done, i could not really have been much closer to death and lived
end addendum

But remember I did a whole lifestyle change.
I never go into pubs except to specifically
join old friends for good reason.

I always check the menu to see if booze is
included for any of the dishes.

I never assume I wont be tempted to drink, smoke, or eat overmuch
ever again. Thats just when its most likely.

I keep BUSY.

Never ever feel old, tired or depressed, and if you
are living one of these maudlin days then

Or listen to good music. Dig out the old lps or tapes
and sit down and listen. I am just retaping over 600 lps onto reel
to blissful reel, thence to pc, then cleaning and then to cd and back to cassettes.
A very long job, but throw in the golf, car, the website,
models, and you see I am busy, occupied, lively and the
music is a great boost in buzz, where other boosts are gone.

I used to do these below

dope but not current mad strengths
strong painkillers

these put me to intensive care for ten weeks with stopped kidneys
9 lots of pancreatitis before during and after, liver down to 11 per cent
fatty heart, arythmia, grossly overweight, and living amongst theives,
druggies, pimps.

I am now quite amazingly back to full function on kidneys and liver, plus
have only to conquer severe arythmia which I am told will never go
and I am signed off for life.

We shall see, I want to beat that too and prove it can be done.

YOU can do this too. I am now 53 you could start a lot earlier,
and may indeed need to, as many of our youngsters will not see 35 for
the girls or 40 for the lads out there.

For you the drink is stronger, the ciggies and drugs are stronger,
the will is weaker, and you all started way earlier than us without
any real exercise, like we had in our youth to offset the damage.

My mates died 50 to 56 ish, women 40 to 45 ish, you will probably
only survive to age forty tops, if you carry on as now.

Malc Pugh september 2005.

Good luck. Malc. 2005.

Additional information for Apps users in 2013.

The weight loss, stress and drinking smoking pages were written in
around 2003 to 2005. I quit drinking and smoking on Feb 28th 2000
over a three week period. I lost all the weight 2004 and I started playing
golf again, following on a thirty year lay off, in 2005, aged 52.
I started back off a 20 handicap, got down to 5 by 2009 then
apparantly had heart attack Feb 2009. Diagnosed Nov 2009.
I thought that I had pulled a muscle between my ribs as it was a bit sore
playing, but when my breathing was a little poor i got checked
out and found I had suffered heart attack. I was playing golf all the summer but won little.
I left that club for another where the course was a lot flatter
and also much more difficult, one of the best in the Midlands, Moseley.
I had ballooned up to 12 handicap again, but lately have got it back
down to 10. I mean to keep on going down again. My golf apps are there
to help others try to do likewise. They are minimally paid apps to subsidise these
self help apps I send out for free to help you all out there get better.

I am writing this little chunk on the end of the big three self help Apps,
the Weight Loss, drinking smoking quitting, and stress management, in order
to give you a progress report that will serve as hope for you all.

I used to drink with a Scots lad, Jimmy, and Belfast lad Kevin.
They both quit drinking. Full stop. A few years later (I am so quick on the uptake ;-))
I thought to myself, if those two can do it, ANYONE can do it. So then I quit too.
I have never ever had a drop of drink or a puff of smoke since; 13 years
on I am 14 stone 4, 6 foot two, and winning at golf on a pretty decent level.

If us three can quit drinking, trust me anyone in the world can.
I am sufficiently sharp in mind still to have written all these self help
pages on 15 websites, produced a blog, learned how to get it all top of
Google search results, then produced phone Apps for you all to read.
Doesn't matter now if you have a pc, tablet or a phone, you can access these pages and help
yourself get better.

Bear in mind, that I couldn't have been much further gone; i was 17 stone 3,
9 lots of pancreatitis, four of which put me through
weeks of intensive care. Also I had kidneys pack up and start up again with
this tube put down through past my collar bone right into one of the big
veins near the heart. Seriously painful even under morphine. (You want this??)

One of my surgeons told me he won a tenner each off the other 9 consultants
and surgeons who were monitoring or treating me (cos there was so much wrong all over the place)
as hed bet them i'd live when they said i'd die. When i asked him why he bet on me
he just said "you're way too stubborn by nature to die easy"

He told me he could tell me which patients on a ward would pull through
or not, and often it was the ones with the worst problems. He told me
"some people fight like hell and some give up"

I am living proof you can walk away from severe problems and get back to
normal, I was at the brink of death a few times.

So now its 2013, and youre sat there reading this, and you have big problems
too. Are you going to be a fighter or a weak quitter?? Are you going to give in
or are you going to prove everyone wrong that ever wrote you off, and turn
it all around. You can all do it man, cos it's just down to being pig headed
stubborn and really wanting to get better. Only YOU can do this, no ones going
to wave a magic wand and wowee lo and behold you are saved from yourself.

And when you do, imagine the faces of your family, and your old close friends
who had virtually given up on you ever seeing sense or reason, sadly lost
to them just like you were already dead man.
They are going to be overjoyed at regaining the old you, the one
that doesn't need drugs, drink or smoking to feel cool calm collected
and in control of their own destiny again.
You can hold your head even higher than before having beaten all these things
You can do this, if Jimmy, Kevin and I can, then sure as hell you can too.
Or are you just going to let an old limey like me beat you ;-)

To quote from the very last line of the last golf App, your attitude has to be:

Youre the greatest gladiator in the whole world, the last man standing in
the Colliseum, who has a lion for a pet.

How can you possibly fail man.