My dependency on chemicals never really went away, but I found a better way to feed it: exercise. Working out gave me that little boost of whatever it is, je ne sais quois, that made me feel more confident, more comfortable in my own skin. It wasn't the same at first (and at this point, I'll never know if I'm back to "baseline"), but for me at this time in my life, it's enough.
It's funny because objectively, life is so much better post-smoking. You don't smell, you don't have mandatory breaks, airplane rides aren't hell, family and friends don't complain, etc etc etc. And yet, while I don't miss smoking, I can distinctly remember all that trouble being worth it at the time.