Eventually - long after he stopped smoking - he threw the pack out, as part of his usual housekeeping.
I thought of this when I decided to quit social medias over the past two years. I bring it up now because it's something I think about in regard to how centrally important mindset is when trying to break a habit, or work on something of deeper value.
I wonder now too about the asymmetry in the ease of adoption vs. difficulty of opting out with smart phones and social media. Anecdotally, it just seems that you can nearly unconsciously start using a smartphone or say, sign up for instagram. But after a relatively quick onboarding, the effort required to opt out of these things feels akin to doing actual, hard work.
I kept a pint of ice cream in the freezer and a bag of chips in the cupboard. The reasoning for me was: I'll never impulse buy snacks while at the store, because I already have it at home.
And if I haven't eaten out of my pint of ice cream, then I haven't eaten any ice cream.
It's like knowing you have these traps to avoid, but if you just keep one very close, that's the only one you need to consider, and then all the other ones disappear. It's definitely a focus thing for me, don't know if it was the same for your dad.
Love that roundup of this technique. Coincidentally enough my dad also used this same aid to quit smoking. I saw some slight sense but never enough to unpack it myself.
A term related to this idea is dark pattern.
This is a good overview of the idea.
If you can not use it when it is there, you've really won.
It's always around. I can have a drink whenever I want (and I mean, I have drinks socially, I usually end up playing bartender at parties, that sort of thing). But it is, and always has been, something that happens on my terms.
Those first few weeks are the most difficult part of the process.