smoking isn't easy but millions of people have quit over the past several years. Many more
are seriously thinking of quitting due to the fact that they are more aware of the dangers
of smoking. Public opinion has also had an impact, as has second hand smoke issues. Check
out these tips. They will surely prepare you in your quest to becoming smoke-free!
- List all the reasons you want to stop. Every night before
going to bed, repeat one of the reasons 10 times.
- Decide positively that you want to stop. Try to avoid
negative thoughts about how difficult it might be.
- Develop strong personal reasons to stop in addition to your
health and obligations to others. For example, think of all the time you waste taking
cigarette breaks, rushing out to buy a pack, hunting for a light etc., or of all the money
- Begin to condition yourself physically: start a modest
exercise program; drink more fluids; get plenty of rest; avoid fatigue.
- Have realistic expectations -- stopping isn't easy, but it's
not impossible either. More than 3 million Americans stop smoking every year.
- Understand that withdrawal symptoms are temporary and are
healthy signs that the body is repairing itself from its long exposure to nicotine. Within
24 hours of abrupt smoking cessation, withdrawal symptoms may appear as the body begins
its healing process.
- Relapses occur in the first week or two after stopping, when
withdrawal symptoms are strongest and your body is still using all your personal
resources. Willpower, family, friends, and any tips that work for you will help you get
through this critical period successfully.
- Bet a friend you can stop on your target date. Put your
cigarette money aside every day, and forfeit it if you smoke. (But if you do smoke, don't
give up; simply strengthen your resolve and try again.
- Ask your partner or friend to stop with you.
- Tell your family and friends that you're stopping and when.
They can be an important source of support both before and after you stop.
Tips To Use Just Before
- Practice going without cigarettes.
- Think of stopping in terms of one day at a time.
- Stop carrying cigarettes.
- Don't empty your ashtrays. This will remind you of how many
cigarettes you've smoked each day, and the sight and smell of stale butts will be very
- Collect all your cigarette butts in one large glass
container as a visual reminder of the mess smoking represents.
Tips For The Day You Stop
- Throw away all your cigarettes and matches. Hide lighters
- Clean your clothes to rid them of the cigarette smell.
- Develop a clean, fresh, non smoking environment around
yourself. Buy yourself flowers -- you may be surprised how much you can enjoy their scent
- Make a list of things you'd like to buy for yourself or
someone else. Estimate the cost in terms of packs of cigarettes and put the money aside to
buy these presents.
- Keep busy on the big day.
- Buy yourself a treat or do something special to celebrate.
- Stay away from other smokers if they could weaken your
- Remember that one cigarette could ruin a successful attempt.
- Remember that alcohol or other drugs will weaken willpower.
Tips To Help You Cope With
The Urge To Smoke...
First, remind yourself that you've stopped and you're a
non-smoker. Then, look closely at your urge to smoke and ask yourself:
- Where was I when I got the urge?
- What was I doing at the time?
- Who was I with?
- What was I thinking?
Think about why you've stopped. Repeat to yourself (aloud
if you are alone) your three main reasons for stopping. Write down your three main reasons
for stopping. Anticipate triggers and prepare to avoid them:
- Keep your hands busy -- doodle, knit, type a letter.
- Avoid people who smoke -- spend more time with non-smoking
- Find activities that make smoking difficult (gardening,
exercise, washing the car, taking a shower).
- Put something other than a cigarette into your mouth. Keep
oral substitutes handy -- try carrots, sunflower seeds, apples, celery, raisins, or
- Cut a drinking straw into cigarette-sized pieces. Inhale
- Change your surroundings when an urge hits; get up and move
about, or do something else.
- Avoid places where smoking is permitted.
- Look at your watch whenever an urge to smoke hits you.
You'll find the urge will only last a few minutes.
- Wear a rubber band around your wrist. When you really feel
like you want a cigarette, snap the rubber band a few times and in your mind say STOP.
While you do this, picture in your mind a red stop sign. You might try this at home aloud
a few times and then do it silently when in public.
- Be prepared for the "first times" as a non-smoker:
your first vacation, first time home alone, first long car ride, first period of boredom.
- If you know you will be in a high-risk situation, plan how
you will get through it without smoking.