Quitting smoking can be tough for a wide variety of reasons, but taking that first step away from nicotine can be one of the biggest and most important parts of the process. Within 24 hours there are changes that start to take place in your body, gaining momentum as the days, weeks and months pass. We’ve pulled together a list of 10 tips that may help you on the path forward.
Write Down Your Reasons
For many, this may be your health or your family. For some, it could be that you’re tired of spending so much on the habit. Whatever the reasons, write them down. You may have an easier time sticking to your goal if you have to stare at it somewhere once in a while.
Find Support In Advance
This is especially important if you’re trying to quit cold-turkey. There are so many resources, programs, help lines and people who will support you when you need it. Seriously, type a few words into the good ol’ Google and you’d be surprised at how many people out there are lining up to help make this happen.
Did you take smoke breaks at work? It might not be helpful to avoid taking breaks (it could feel like a ‘punishment’) or to go into your breaks without a behavior to replace smoking. Did you always light up the second you stepped out of a building? Try opening up an app you enjoy instead and spend a few minutes catching up.
Talk to a Doc About Nicotine Replacement
These tools can be especially helpful if you’re feeling the physical side effects of quitting, such as headaches. This might be a good time to get your doctor involved, since these replacements aren’t exactly cheap.
This has two sides to it. For people who’ll support you, telling them gets them ready to offer that support. However, it’s not uncommon for friends who still smoke to be unprepared to help you quit. Prepare them for these changes and prepare yourself to stand your ground.
Find Other Forms of Relaxation
If smoking acted as stress relief for you, you’re going to want to figure out how to replace it. If bubble baths seem overrated to you, use the money you would have put toward a pack or a case and buy yourself something you like. Grab a dessert or a coffee you like, because you’ll probably be able to taste it better a few days after quitting, too.
Cut Back on Alcohol
You may not need to watch the drinks permanently, but alcohol messes with your ability to make good decisions. So many people stand firm…until that first happy hour or beer at a party.
Marie Kondo Your House
Get rid of anything smoking-related in your home. Your ashtrays, your fancy lighters, your matches from that fancy restaurant.
Adopt a Healthy Lifestyle
Exercise (which may be easier now), healthy eating and adequate sleep can help ease withdrawal. Thus, you’re less likely to throw in the towel while quitting smoking.
It’s okay if this is your tenth time trying to quit smoking. Every successful ex-smoker failed to quit…until they didn’t.