Read these 39 Ways to Quit Smoking Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Quit Smoking tips and hundreds of other topics.
After the urges to smoke have become more and more infrequent, overwhelming surprise attacks are sure to come a few weeks and months into your new smoke free life. When these nearly out-of-control urges come (and they will always engulf you in totally unexpected moments):
You simply use the same methods you used when the urges were almost constant. As time passes, the urge to smoke is greatly reduced and becomes less and less. It will not be a continuous battle for the rest of your life, and keeping this on the forefront of your mind will help when an urge does hit.
Many people prefer to quit smoking "cold turkey" rather than wean themselves gradually or through the use of nicotine replacement therapy or other smoking cessation aids.
If you quit cold turkey, you are quitting abruptly, and this can be successful, but it can also be difficult when the withdrawal symptoms hit. Make sure you understand that you will probably have more withdrawal symptoms with this method than with other methods of quitting.
- Drink water
Nicotine is water soluble. The more you drink, the quicker the nicotine gets flushed out of your system.
- Deep breath
This is a good stress reduction technique. Many people pick up their cigarettes because they are stressed or are anticipating a stressful situation.
Most urges last two minutes, so do your best to outlast your urges, take a walk or eat a carrot.
- Discuss with friends
Having someone to talk to at a moment when you feel the urge to smoke may be the distraction you need until the urge passes.
- Do something else
This will take your mind off the urge you are experiencing. Try picking up a new hobby or keeping your hands busy.
A big misconception among long time smokers is the thought of damage already done. People tend to think "I've smoked this long, I can't hurt myself any more."
The truth is, it doesn't matter how long you have smoked, and quitting now will improve your health. Your body will start to heal itself from the damage already done, giving you an opportunity to live a more healthy and happy lifestyle. It is never too late to quit smoking.
Smokers have smoke breaks, it's that simple. It is important to realize that you cannot do the same thing on a break that you did when you were smoking, because it triggers the urge to smoke.
Instead, go for a walk around the block or stay inside and surf the internet. Whatever you decide to do make sure it's with people who don't smoke and not places that will make you think about smoking.
There are many different things you can do when you are tempted to pick up a cigarette. Most of them are things to simply help you pass the time where you would normally smoke, but they can work wonders:
- Try Different Activities
Soak in the tub
Visit the library
Visit the theatre
Send your message to quit smoking to others in need
- Other ideas
Drink water with a straw
Chew on toothpicks or gum
Keep your refrigerator supplied with carrots, celery and apples for snacks
If you are a health-concerned smoker who has been thinking about quitting, ask yourself which of the following 10 quit smoking stages you have reached as of today. Then pick three things you can do within the next month that will help you get to the next stage. Rank three things you've chosen in order of importance. Then work hard to do them. Keep repeating this exercise until you reach Stage 10.
Stage 1. You've identified yourself as a health concerned smoker. You're worried about the health effects of smoking and wonder if you should quit or cut down.
Stage 2. You decide that you will begin to seek additional information about smoking, quitting and other health related behaviors and will begin to actively explore your alternatives.
Stage 3. You decide to take some steps to modify your smoking level and/or your overall health status - e.g. observing your smoking triggers, switching brands, cutting down, getting more exercise, taking vitamins, managing stressful situations more effectively, paying more attention to your bonds with family and friends.
Stage 4. You make a firm commitment to quit but do not specify a quitting date.
Stage 5. You set a quitting date and make a firm commitment to quit on that date.
Stage 6. You smoke your last cigarette and go without smoking for 24 hours.
Stage 7. You complete your first week as a nonsmoker.
Stage 8. You complete your first month as a nonsmoker.
Stage 9. You complete your first three months as a nonsmoker.
Stage 10. You complete your first year as a nonsmoker.
Money spent on cigarettes adds up. A great way to support yourself and keep your motivation to quit smoking is figuring out what to do with these new found riches.
Put the money in a new savings account, and let it compile. While it's compiling have a goal as to what that money will be used for. Whether it's a new car, a well deserved vacation, or a new wardrobe, your goal will help you succeed in becoming smoke free and will also grant you an awesome reward in the end.
Withdrawal not only from the addiction to nicotine, but to the act of actually smoking are the reasons people have such a hard time quitting.
Preparing yourself by making a list of ways to overcome your withdrawal symptoms will increase your chance for success.
There is a reason that recovering alcoholics and drug addicts know exactly how long it has been since they quit. They enjoy the days of sobriety. They need to know how many days of clean living they've had because it offers them hope that they can continue.
The same thinking can be applied to cigarettes. Count the days you've been smoke free. Use it as an incentive to know you can stay smoke free since you have some this far.
When you decide to quit smoking, making a list of reasons to quit can help tremendously. Pick a number, and start there. So once you have 5 things on your list, pin it up somewhere in your home that will grab your attention multiple times on a daily basis. Once you think of more reasons (There are always more reasons) add them to your list. Make a game of it, and let it help you through the process to succeed!
The day you quit smoking will be a very tough day mentally. There are things you can do to eliminate some of the anguish you might feel:
- Make sure all cigarettes and ashtrays are thrown away
- Spray the house and air it out to make sure you do not "smell" something that will trigger you to want a cigarette
- Make sure you change your entire routine around when you smoked. Make a point to do something different during times you know you would normally be smoking
- Have a support group ready to help. Use your friends and family, and call them or visit them when you feel the need for additional support
Gaining weight is common in people who quit smoking, usually because food is used as a substitution for cigarettes at least for a short time. You can easily maintain the control of your weight by choosing to eat healthy snacks when a craving arises, and staying active on a daily basis by taking a walk or going for a swim.
Your friends and loved ones care about your health. When the time comes for you to kick the habit of smoking, it's a good idea to recruit your family members to be your backbone. When you need additional support, someone to talk to, or someone to get your mind off of smoking, they will be the first ones to stand up and start working for you.
Create a list of ways that the can help support you through your hard efforts because no two people are the same and what you need to help you succeed may be different than what someone else may think you need.
If you have a friend that smokes and you have talked with them about quitting, make a plan to quit together. Not only does this offer additional support for each other, but going through withdrawal at the same time will help you empathize with each other and increase your chances of success!
When you make the decision to quit smoking, it is important to make sure everyone knows about it, smokers and non smokers alike! In order to be successful at quitting, you cannot be around people who are smoking. This means by telling everyone you quit, they will understand if you ask them to refrain from lighting up while you're around. They will also understand if you distance yourself from them through the withdrawal period.
Journaling can be a helpful tool if you're trying to quit smoking. It is a place you can document your feelings, struggles, and successes through your journey. A journal can help keep your emotions in check. Use the journal as your friend – not just as a monologue of your daily events. Some people smoke because they feel stressed and need time to think or talk. Journaling enables you to do these things and still stay smoke free.
You can also use your journaling to help others trying to quit. Journal on a blog, so others can read what you are going through and offer their own support to you while you are in turn offering support to them.
There are many different methods that can be used when it comes time to quit smoking. Everyone is different, so things may work better for some than others. A very popular method of quitting is to quit with a plan:
- Pick a quit date
- Prepare by cutting down
- Start changing habits, like walking instead of smoking after dinner
Another popular method of quitting is to simply stop smoking. Cold turkey works for many people, especially when it is not their first attempt. This method usually works for people who are at the end of their rope and are simply tired of smoking.
Honestly, you don't want to replace smoking with a similar act, although you can certainly find a temporary alternative to smoking that will help fight the addiction. Using thing such as carrot sticks or pencils as if you were smoking them, will help with the hand to mouth urge smokers have.
However, you can permanently replace smoking with something that has nothing to do with it, like running, bike riding, or fishing. Becoming smoke-free is a life changing experience, why not change other things in your life to promote your new healthy lifestyle?
Being a concerned friend or loved one of a smoker is natural. It can be frustrating when nothing you try seems to push your loved one to quit smoking, but it's important to remember it all comes down to the smoker.
It is impossible to make someone do something they do not want to do. The best way to help someone quit is to offer moral support, understanding, and empathy. Don't push your views upon them, and when they are ready to quit be there every step of the way.
The worst thing you can do to your success is to put yourself in tempting situations like dining at restaurants where people are smoking. If you go to a place that offers seating for smokers, ask for a seat outside or as far away from the smoking section as possible. Better yet, leave and find a smoke free establishment.
Preparing to quit smoking is something that has worked for many people, but it's not the same thing as simply cutting back in anticipation of quitting. Cutting back doesn't help you quit, it simply helps you cut back. In order to quit you have to put that last cigarette down and never pick one up again.
Go back into the recesses of your mind and conjure up the “you” who didn't smoke. Think of the “you” who had never been scarred by inhaling a cigarette. Did you feel more energetic? Were you more physically active?
Chances are you'll have a hard time remembering just how you felt before you were a smoker, because for most it was many years ago. If this is the case, talk to others that have quit and find out what keeps them smoke free. What benefits have they gained that are so important to them that it's worth the struggle they went through to succeed and to stay a success.
Use audio tapes, video tapes, and self help books to get you through the quitting process. They will help keep you motivated and provide you with a variety of strategies to quit smoking.
Participate in other changing other areas of your life like eating healthier, exercising more, and learning to manage stress. Keep your hands busy. Gradually work on changing your thinking from thoughts of a smoker to thoughts of a non smoker. When you consider yourself smoke free, you will start to do things that reflect this.
When you decide to quit smoking, you will have to make the decision to stay away from cigarettes. This means making sure the friends you spend time with do not smoke near you. It can be hard to get friends who smoke to respect this sometimes, so you may have to distance yourself through the withdrawal process and spend time with friends who do not smoke instead.
Try to distract yourself from urges to smoke. Talk to someone, go for a walk, or get busy with a task.
When you first try to quit, change your routine. Use a different route to work. Drink tea instead of coffee. Eat breakfast in a different place.
Do something to reduce your stress. Take a hot bath, exercise, or read a book.
You can also help to keep the urge to smoke minimal by using stop smoking aids like the patch or gum.
One of the many reasons people continue to smoke or add to their daily intake is because they're bored. Sitting outside the classroom building or parking yourself on the bench outside work can be hazardous to your health.
Solve the problem by not lingering. Have a short conversation with your co-worker but don't stay to talk about all of the latest office gossip. Say what you have on your mind and keep going. If you cannot avoid these conversations when you get them started, don't put yourself in that position. Stay a few extra minutes at lunch so you don't have time to sit and talk. Don't get to work early or stay late to cavort with others. Not only can you cut down on your cigarettes, you will get more done elsewhere.
The gum and patch are both tools to help people quit smoking. They are sold over the counter and can be pretty pricey, but also well worth it.
These products help minimize your withdrawal from nicotine, so you can focus on the task at hand which is becoming free of cigarettes.
When the day comes to put the last cigarette down, make sure you don't leave anything around that has been an aid in smoking. Collect the following things and throw them out:
- Magazines used to read when smoking
- Your favorite coffee mug that you shared many cigarettes with
- Any other mental or physical reminders of smoking
When you prepare to quit smoking, make sure you pick a date you will quit. Mark it on your calendar and mentally prepare yourself for that day. Make some plans for the day as well, something upbeat and fun to celebrate your new found freedom from cigarettes!
This production of your quit day will help to really jumpstart your motivation and excitement for the good things that come from not smoking.
You may be wondering what to ask your doctor when you go to see him about smoking, and here are some things to get your started:
1. How can you help me to be successful at quitting?
2. What medication do you think would be best for me and how should I take it?
3. What should I do if I need more help?
4. Are there any support groups offered through your establishment?
Medications can help you stop smoking by controling the urge to smoke.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved five medications to help you quit smoking:
Bupropion SR—Available by prescription.
Nicotine gum—Available over-the-counter.
Nicotine inhaler—Available by prescription.
Nicotine nasal spray—Available by prescription.
Nicotine patch—Available by prescription and over-the-counter. Ask your health care provider for advice and carefully read the information on the package.
All of these medications may double your chances of quitting smoking for good.
Using nicotine nasal sprays can help smokers quit by allowing quick relief when a craving or urge strikes. It is fast and effective and does well for short term use. However, it is important to remember that it isn't meant for long time use or as an alternative to smoking, it is meant to provide short term support to help kick the habit.