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Science Says This Simple Hack Can Help You Stop Smoking Weed

Science Says This Simple Hack Can Help You Stop Smoking Weed

What if I told you there’s a hack, that’s backed up with academic research, that can teach you how to stop smoking weed (or cigarettes) for good? That’s right, for good!

This simple technique was first used to teach people how to manage their money more effectively, but inadvertently helped reduce drinking, consumption of of junk food, save and earn more money, and improve work and academic performance.

It’s so effective that I instructed all of my clients and even close friends who are trying to stop smoking weed to use this technique.

Almost all of them informed me how they were either able to completely stop smoking for weed within a month or two or they were able to effortlessly decrease the amount of weed that they were smoking.

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It’s not an instant fix, but its definitely effective over the long run.

The Backstory

In the book The Power of Habit, author Charles Duhigg explains how researchers Ken Cheng and Megan Oaten conducted a four-month experiment in order to improve spending habits. The participants were instructed to write on a piece of paper every penny they spent within the four-month period.

The only issue they had was making tracking their expenses a consistent habit, but once that was ingrained in their system, they experienced incredible results!

After the study concluded, participants reported smoking less, drinking less, and increased productivity at work and school. Oh, and an increase in their bank accounts (obviously).

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Charles Duhigg attempted to explain why the participants experienced so many benefits from tracking their expenses:

“As people strengthened their willpower muscles in one part of their lives — in the gym, or a money management program — that strength spilled over into what they ate or how hard they worked. Once willpower became stronger, it touched everything.”

Not only does tracking your daily expenses increase your willpower to stop smoking weed, but it also helps the brain associate pain with smoking and pleasure with not smoking.

The Pain Pleasure Principle

If you’re trying to change a behavior, rather than using willpower, find a way to associate pain with the unwanted behavior and pleasure with the new and empowering alternative.

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Through The Weed Tracking Technique, you’re going to train your brain to focus on the pain that you normally supress and use that to help you quit smoking weed. You’re going to have to face the reality of how much you spend on weed (I know, it hurts).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q7XCR8ZUQWA&feature=youtu.be

How to apply The Weed Tracking Technique

The first thing you have to do is commit yourself to this technique for a one- or two-week trial period. Research shows that if you start off with low expectations, it increases the likelihood that the habit will stick.

In addition, we want to use a pen and paper to record your expenses because research shows that writing helps your brain learn faster and encode experiences at a deeper level.

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And, in this case, we’re helping the brain encode the association of pain with smoking and pleasure with not smoking. Makes sense?

One more thing, if you don’t want to track all of your spending, just track the expenses of the habit you’re trying to change. I prefer tracking everything, but something’s better than nothing, right?

The four steps to The Weed Tracking Technique:

  1. Carry around a pen and paper everywhere you go so that you can jot down every time you spend money on weed, cigarettes, or any surrounding expense resulting from smoking (i.e. rolling papers, bongs, food for munchies, or even travel expenses).
  2. At the end of your trial period, add up how much you spent.
  3. Answer this question: What could I have done with this extra money? Make a list of all the things that money could have been used for. Not only write it down, but imagine what you’re writing down vividly. You need to feel the pain of loss.
  4. Write down how your life could have been positively impacted if you actually did those things instead of spending it on weed or cigarettes. It doesn’t matter how big or small the impact is, as long as it’s some form of improvement.

One last bit of advice: when writing down how your life could have been positively impacted by using the money you already spent on something that would positively impact your life, don’t  limit yourself to the direct benefits.

For example, yes, you could’ve used that money to go to a concert and have fun. But during that concert, you could have deepened the relationships you have with your friends or you could have met your future boyfriend or girlfriend.

So, what are you waiting for? Get that sheet of paper and start tracking your spending!

Featured photo credit: female smoking/ By Thong Von via unsplash.com

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Last Updated on March 4, 2019

How to Use Credit Cards While Staying Out of Debt

How to Use Credit Cards While Staying Out of Debt

Many people will suggest that the best thing to do with your credit cards during these tough economic times is to cut them up with a pair of scissors. Indeed, if you are already in huge debt, you probably should stop using them and begin a payback strategy immediately. However, if you are not currently in trouble with your credit cards, there are wise ways to use them.

I happen to really love my credit cards so I will share with you my approach to how I use mine without getting into deep financial trouble.

Ever since about 1983 when I got my first Visa card, I continue to charge as many of my purchases as possible on credit. Everything from gas, groceries and monthly payments for services like my cable and home security monitoring are charged on credit. Despite my heavy usage, I have maintained the joy of never paying any interest fees at all on any of my credit cards.

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Here are some tips on how best to use your credit cards without falling into the trap of paying those nasty double-digit interest fees.

Do Not Treat Credit Cards as Your Funding Sources

Too many people treat their credit cards as funding sources for major purchases. Do not do this if you want to stay out of trouble. I use my credit cards as convenient financial instruments so I do not have to carry around much cash. In fact, I hate carrying cash, especially coins. When you buy things on credit, the purchases are clean and you will not get annoying coins back as change.

I do not rely on my Visa, MasterCard or American Express to fund any of my purchases, large or small. This brings me to my golden rule when it comes to whether I will pull out any of my credit cards either at a retail or online store.

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I never purchase anything with my credit cards if I do not have the actual cash on hand in my bank account.

If I really cannot pay for the item or service with cash that I already have at the bank, then I simply will not make the purchase. Remember, my credit cards are not used as funding sources. They are just convenient alternatives to actual cash in my pocket.

Make Sure to Always Pay Off Balances in Full Each Month

The next very important part of my overall strategy is to make absolutely sure that I pay the balances in full each and every month no matter how large they are. This should never be a problem if the cash has been budgeted for my purchases and secured in the bank. I have always paid my full balances each month ever since my very first credit card and this is why I never pay interest charges.

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Using Credit Cards with Rewards

Most of my credit cards are of the “no annual fees” type, including one MasterCard on a separate account I keep at home as a spare in case I lose my wallet or incur any fraudulent charges. However, I do use a main Visa card which does have an annual fee because all purchases on that card reward me with airline frequent flyer points. For me, the annual fee is worth it since I do travel and I get enough points to redeem many free flights.

You have to decide for yourself if you will charge enough purchases on credit each year without paying interest charges to warrant a credit card that rewards you with airline points (or other rewards). In my case, the answer is “yes” but that might not be the case for you.

I occasionally use a MasterCard or American Express card on small purchases just to keep those accounts active. Also, I have been to the odd retailer that accepted only a certain type of credit card, so I find that having one from each major company is quite handy. Aside from my main Visa card which earns the airline points, the rest of my cards are of the “no annual fees” variety.

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So this is how I use my credit cards without getting into any financial trouble with them. This strategy is recommended only if you are not in debt, of course. In fact, it is worth keeping in mind once you’re out of debt so that you can keep your credit cards active and treat them responsibly.

What are your credit card usage strategies? Let me know in the comments — I’d love to hear what methods you use.

Featured photo credit: Artem Bali via unsplash.com

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