Weird musing on stuff and nicotine
16-01-2011 § Leave a comment
I’ve quit smoking twice in my life. The first time I managed to stay free of nicotine for about 3 months. I enjoyed not being a slave of this bad habit. It wasn’t even a particular nasty attack of so-called ‘need to smoke’ that got me started again. I just thought I could handle one cigarette (wrong). Typical junky-thinking… Anyway… I started smoking again, and every time I lit the next cigarette I had that nagging feeling: “I was supposed to have quit, I shouldn’t be doing this”. I couldn’t be a happy smoker anymore.
The second time I quit (almost 8 years ago, insert smug face here) I was so fed up with this habit, I was quite obsessive about quiting and staying that way. Oh sure, there were more considerations, health being a major factor, but the resentment helped. I knew that getting back with Mr Nico Tine again wasn’t gonna make me happy. Been there, done that!
Maybe not quite, because something oddly similar seems to apply to my decluttering…
I have a tiny mini fridge boxed up in the basement. It was a price in a little competition some years ago. It has a picture of ‘Happy Feet‘ on it. I love that movie! But here’s the thing: I don’t use the darn thing, I never have and I probably never ever will. I tried selling it more than once, then at the last moment decided to keep it. I tried giving it away, and yet, every time I enter my basement, there it is. I decided long ago it needs a new home. The decision to keep it may be more recent, but everytime I see it, I know it has to go, because I can’t go back to happily owning it.
It feels too familiar, I’ve been through this before! But stuff is no addiction, right? Sure, the perceived need to get new stuff can get addictional proportions, but just owning it?
Addiction or not, there seem to be some twin-like properties to this. First, the habit of holding on to stuff (for me) is mostly an irrational what-if, based on anxiety about the future (remember I’ve never ever needed to use this fridge before). Like smoking, it’s a pacifier with no other function than that, with some irrationality attached. Second, the ‘need’ to own this is only there because I already have it. Smoking is only a ‘need’ once you’ve started smoking. And now I find even breaking the habit has similarities. I’ve quit smoking, certainly I can stop owning a mini fridge!?
So! Out with the mini fridge (even though the print of Happy Feet is soooo cute)! Now I just have to find an easy-or-fun way to get rid of it 😉