|Successful people in
all walks of life become successful through planning. The same is true for smokers who
successfully quit smoking. You must create a plan that you will follow daily, so that you
quit smoking purposefully, not haphazardly.
Put your plan on paper. Write each of these steps in your plan:
Study this report
and write down how you will mentally prepare yourself to quit smoking. Don't try to quit
until you feel you are ready.
Decide on a
specific date that you will quit. Write down your "quit date." Make sure your
quit date comes after you have completed step "a" above. Also, choose a quit
date that occurs during a relatively low stress time. Don't try to quit during a stressful
time at work or during the break-up of a relationship, for example. Quitting on a specific
date is preferable to slowly reducing the number of cigarettes that you smoke. By going
"cold turkey" you won't have to keep track of how many cigarettes you smoked
yesterday and how many you will smoke today. You will also remove the temptation to cheat
and smoke too many. By using this report to prepare yourself for your quit date you will
be ready to quit, and going cold turkey won't be so difficult.
Write down all the
things you will enjoy doing after you quit smoking (long walks, eating out without being
restricted to the smoking section, taking a vacation with the money you will save, etc.).
This step is very important, so spend extra time dreaming up your "smoke-free
Write down the
times and occasions when you are most likely to smoke. Write down what
"triggers" your desire to smoke. You may be surprised to find that you have
organized your day around smoking.
Write down five to
ten things you will do instead of smoking, whenever you feel a cigarette craving coming
on. For example, you might drink a glass of water, go for a short walk, type a letter, do
some filing, call a friend, read a book, or mow the grass. Plan how you will distract
yourself. Try to distract yourself with something healthy and/or beneficial. Match the
distractions you've created in this step with the times and occasions your wrote down in
step "d" above.
Write down the names of
three people whom you trust to support your efforts to quit smoking. Contact them and ask
for their support. Make sure you tell them that you want only positive support. Ask them
to call you each day and give you positive encouragement. Also, ask them if you can call
them if you need help.
Write down a list
of all the items that you use when smoking: cigarettes, lighters, matches, ashtrays, etc.
Make notes about where every single item is. Then on your "quit date" track down
each item and throw them away. Don't forget to clean out your car and your office at work.
Write down a list
of rewards that you will give yourself. Be sure to reward yourself as you go longer and
longer without smoking. For example: End of Day One -- long, hot bubble bath. End of Week
One -- see a Movie. End of Week Three -- dinner at an exclusive restaurant. End of Month
Two -- take a day off from work. End of Six Months -- take a weekend getaway. End of Year
One -- take a 7-day vacation. Whenever possible, write down the specific date that you
will reward yourself. By the way, these rewards won't cost you much, if anything, because
you'll be saving hundreds of dollars by not smoking!
appointment to see your doctor.