As of today I've gone an entire month without drinking a Diet Coke or a Diet Pepsi. This may not seem like much of an accomplishment unless you understand the shameful volume of diet soda I consumed on a daily basis.
Since I occasionally do work for TBWA Chiat/Day and their large client PepsiCo, I don't want to start slinging any mud about their fine, fine products.
However I will say that of the 112 odd chemicals found in a typical diet soda, my guess is that 38 of them must have highly addictive properties. Because kicking this stuff is not easy.
Having endured enough badgering from my wife and my kids, I decided to quit and go cold turkey. One day I was a Diet Coke drinker, the next day I was an ex-Diet Coke drinker. No cutting back. No weaning. No 12 step program ("Hi, I'm Rich, I had a Diet Coke with my breakfast.")
Years ago I remember my father quit smoking. He'd smoked his entire life. 9 year old boys in the rough streets of the Bronx didn't have much else to do. He handed a hypnotist on the Upper West Side a hundred dollars and within 20 minutes my father was reborn as an ex-smoker. I suspect he could saved himself that money and just willed himself to quit since he was blessed, and cursed, with the determination of a bulldozer.
I didn't want to go to a hypnotist so I decided to replace a bad habit with a good one.
I bought a set of those Navy Seal Perfect Push Up bars. Here's what I'm going to look like after a year of NOT drinking diet soda...