Addiction Central-Next Stop Freedom!

John C. Dicey
4 min readMar 19, 2021

Have you failed to quit smoking? Can you imagine trying to find your way around the New York City Subway system without a map? It would be impossible. You would end up going around in circles, frustrated, confused, and completely lost.

Yet that perfectly describes my attempts to quit smoking before I was lucky enough to stumble across Allen Carr. I was trapped.

I love traveling on the NYC Subway — but only when I have a map and a plan for my journey

I’d pretty much given up hope of ever getting free.

It hadn’t been through a lack of trying — I’d become increasingly desperate to quit. It wasn’t just the coughing & wheezing or the financial burden of puffing my way through 4 packs of cigarettes every single day and it wasn’t just the shame and stigma of being the heaviest smoker I knew. It wasn’t even the huge dark shadow at the back of my mind, the same one that most smokers have…especially heavy smokers who can no longer kid themselves about “getting away with it” health-wise.

Of course it was a culmination of all of the above, and more…the terrible realisation that I was trapped, entirely controlled, and helplessly gripped by addiction to nicotine. Having tried every imaginable method of quitting including nicotine patches, nicotine gum, hypnotism, dares, bets, willpower, dummy cigarettes, herbal cigarettes, herbal remedies, acupuncture, locking myself away for a week, neuro-linguistic programming, and even shock treatment — it was clear — if someone shouting at me, showing me photos of dead smokers lungs didn’t put me off the idea of smoking — then nothing would.

I felt helpless, hopeless, and entirely defeated.

I had read Allen Carr’s book and although it didn’t help me quit smoking — it definitely ‘spoke to me’. It felt like it should have worked — it all seemed to make sense to me — yet sadly, I didn’t stop smoking. Looking back on that attempt now — my one huge regret was that I didn’t follow up reading the book by attending an Allen Carr’s Easyway to Stop Smoking Live Group Seminar.

I had written off the live seminars as being too expensive. It was all very well if celebrities and “other people” could afford them but I assumed, wrongly, that they would be too expensive for me to even consider investing in. I had completely ignored the “nothing to lose” lure of the money back guarantee and convinced myself that it wasn’t even worth looking into attending a live Allen Carr’s Easyway to Stop Smoking seminar.

Little did I know that the cost of the seminar would have been truly trivial compared to the $7,000 (£5,000) I’d spend over the following two years of smoking — before finally agreeing to my wife’s increasingly desperate pleas to sign up to one.

Even when I finally agreed to attend a seminar — I did so with immense scepticism. Why would a live seminar work when the book had not? If I was going to succeed in stopping smoking surely I would have done so already wouldn’t I?

In the end I only agreed to attend one after my wife conceded that when I returned a failure — still a smoker — she wouldn’t mention the subject of my smoking for at least 12 months. As far as I was concerned I was onto a sure fire winner. Not only did she pay for the seminar, but when (not if) I failed to quit I’d keep the money returned to me under the money back guarantee, and be assured of smoking in peace for a year afterwards.

I had no idea, walking into that funny little room in south west London, that the length, quality, enjoyment, and happiness of my future life was to be enhanced beyond recognition, and not only would I to be set free from the ravages of my addiction, but I would be so inspired, so excited by my freedom, that some months later I would contact Allen Carr’s Easyway, be trained by Allen Carr to help smokers to quit, and end up counting Allen, not only as my coach, mentor, & business partner — but also as one of my dearest friends.

The beauty of Allen Carr’s brilliant method is that it acts like a map out of the labyrinthian maze — the smoking trap. Something far more challenging than finding your way around the New York City Subway. The book has always been brilliantly effective — even more so now that it has been upgraded for the 2020s and titled ‘Allen Carr’s Easyway to Quit Smoking’ and published in the UK, USA/Canada, & the Rest of the World.

However, attending a live seminar, especially for someone who has tried and failed to quit smoking many, many times, and even read the book without success, is like having your own personal guide who directs every step of your journey, who takes you on the safest route, an easy, one way journey to freedom.

You can find out more about Allen Carr’s Easyway here

You can find out more about Allen Carr’s Easyway to Stop Smoking Live Group Seminars (also available on Zoom) here

Live Group Seminars — now available via Zoom

From the desk John C. Dicey, London, England.





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John C. Dicey

Former 80-a-day smoker who was freed by Allen Carr. Now Global CEO & Senior Therapist at Allen Carr’s Easyway (since 1998) & co-author of Allen Carr books.