stop smoking metaphor replacement

STOP SMOKING METAPHOR REPLACEMENT

How to replace the metaphor for smoking

 

Stop Smoking metaphor replacement is a simple but powerful technique. It consists of finding the positive metaphor that the smoker uses to think about smoking, and replace it with a negative metaphor. That way, every time the smoker thinks about smoking the negative metaphor gets stronger. This replaces the good feelings about smoking with bad feelings, and works to put off the smoker when he reaches for the next cigarette. The technique works because his mind will always have that picture now. Once you see a thing differently, you cannot unsee it. 

The metaphor replacement technique can be applied to many different problems. 

 

Stop Smoking Replacement Technique Example

I had a smoking client who was reluctant to give up. To find out how he thought about smoking, I asked him "what comes to mind when you think about smoking?"

He said "doubt".

Doubt about what?

"Doubt about whether I really want to stop."

I said to him "close your eyes." "Now think about what you get from smoking". "What image comes to mind when you think about smoking, see yourself smoking? What does smoking look like to you?"

He reported that he had an image of himself walking along a river bank , smoking and being by himself. Very positive image of good smoking.

Therefore the technique is to change that positive image into a frightening image.

Still with his eyes closed, I got him to imagine being back on that riverbank,  and then suggested that he take out a cigarette. I then suggested that the cigarette turned into some horrible clawing thing that wrapped around his fingers, and started crawling up his arm. Then the cigarette.... 

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The rest of this metaphor technique is in the Metaphor Therapy collection

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