How to Quit Smoking: Ten Ways to Quit
So you’ve decided to quit smoking. You’re committed to this life change and you know it is going to be difficult, but you are ready to butt out for good. The next part for you to figure out is how you are going to stick to your decision and come up with a plan for how you are going to cope with your cravings. Knowing how to quit smoking is one thing, but being able to follow through and really break the habit is another.
What Happens When You Quit Smoking?
Smoking is a physical and psychological habit that you need to break away from. Eliminating the source of nicotine causes the body to feel physical withdrawal symptoms.
Withdrawal symptoms include cigarette cravings, irritability, anxiety, increased appetite, headaches, depression, difficulty concentrating, increased coughing, tremors, and more. These withdrawal symptoms are temporary and will start to alleviate in a few weeks as the toxins from smoking work their way out of your body.
Since smoking suppresses appetite, you may gain a small amount of weight within the first six months. This gain will be minimal; the average is about 5 pounds.
You need to address both the habits and routines that accompany your smoking. Remember that cravings only last about 5 to 10 minutes, so make sure you have some safeguards in place when cravings hit (remind yourself why you quit, take a shower, have a snack, work on a puzzle, etc.).
Anyone can quit, even if they have relapsed. Don’t get discouraged by bumps in the road.
What’s the Best Way to Quit Smoking?
There is no definitive best solution that works for everyone, but there are many options to handle your cravings. Remember that slipping up is something that can happen, but do not wallow if you slip up. Get back on that figurative horse.
Figure out what caused the slip-up and learn from it, figure out how to cope next time the situation occurs. The decision to quit smoking is a great start and be sure to reward yourself along the way.
10 Ways to Quit Smoking
We stand with you on your smoking cessation journey and we will help you quit.
1. Make a List While You’re Still Smoking
A week before you quit, start a list somewhere: a notepad, in your phone, wherever is convenient. When you reach for a cigarette, do a quick self-assessment. Note the time of day, what you are doing at the time, anything about your current environment that brings out the urge to smoke.
Over the course of the week, you will start to notice patterns in your documented behavior. Being mindful of the triggers of your cravings will help you better fill that time or avoid the triggers when you quit.
2. Quit When You’re in a Good Mood
You want to set yourself up for success and trying to quit smoking when you are depressed or stressed out will only make stopping more difficult. Make sure you are in a good place mentally and emotionally before committing yourself.
Find a channel for your stress and irritations that are not cigarettes. A positive attitude can go a long way, and for some, the attitude makes all the difference.
3. Try Acupuncture
This medical technique triggers the release of endorphins to help the body relax. Kicking a habit like smoking does not bring out your inner calm, any help you can get to help yourself relax will be to your advantage.
Acupuncture has been used as a smoking cessation aid for a while and can help in managing withdrawal symptoms.
4. Trade in Your Cigarettes for a Cup of Tea
It may sound absurd, but brewing and sipping tea provides stress relief. Any time you get the itch for a cigarette, put on the kettle and brew some herbal tea instead. The ritual of making tea provides stress relief and is much better for you.
5. Change up Your Routine
Engaging in new behaviors helps you break old habits. Stray from your typical route to work. Go for a walk instead of watching television at the end of the day. Change your eating habits.
By getting out of your orchestrated routine, you will minimize cravings since your usual cigarette breaks will not fit naturally into your day. Distract yourself and start a new hobby, get a rec center pass, do a 30-day fitness challenge.
Keeping your schedule filled with activities and other stimulation will pull your focus from your craving. Suddenly, training for a marathon or trying all the gelato places in town becomes your new habit.
Next page: Five additional ways to quit smoking.