|CANCER & TREATMENTS FOR CANCER CENTER PATIENTS PREVENTION & RISK ASSESSMENT CLINICAL TRIALS & RESEARCH LIVING WITH CANCER|
When you make the change to quit smoking, you are making an entire lifestyle change. You now have to think like a nonsmoker. And, if you have been smoking for a number of years, this may be difficult at first.
First, think of some reasons why you want to quit smoking:
Smoking is harmful to your health:
Smoking is harmful to the health of your loved ones:
Quitting smoking can:
It has never been easier to quite smoking; there are methods to help you quit:
Set a Date to Quit
Once you are ready to quit it's time to set a date. Once you have picked the day, stick to it. Print the Stop Smoking Contract (PDF format, 112k), fill in your quit date, sign it, and hang it somewhere you will see it everyday. It will help to remind you of your promise to yourself to quit smoking.
Understanding your smoking habit
What are your patterns of smoking? Are you aware of when, where, and why you smoke? Follow this short exercise to find out more about your specific smoking patterns.
Get a piece of paper and keep it with your cigarettes. Each time you open a new pack, get a new piece of paper, and write down the date. Every time you light up, write down four things:
Do this for at least 4 days in a row. This exercise will help you to see what time of day, what situations, and what feelings prompt you to smoke. It will help you understand your particular triggers for lighting a cigarette.
Start quitting before your quit date
Even before your quit date, you can start quitting. Try these tips:
Inform family and friends
Tell everyone of your promise to quit smoking. If you have family or friends that smoke, ask them not to smoke when you are around. Try to find an acquaintance to quit with you.
Remove cigarettes from your house or car
The day before your quit day, throw away all ashtrays and lighters. Do not just hide them because you will find them. Get rid of all leftover cigarettes by flushing them down the toilet. Take the lighter out of your car.
Review previous attempts to quit
If you have tried to quit before, go over what went wrong. Did you get rid of all the ashtrays and left-over cigarettes? Maybe you tried to quit on your own, without telling anyone. Was there a particular situation that prompted you to start up again? If so, what was it and how can you prevent it from happening again?
You know that this will be a difficult time and there will be moments when you are faced with a huge challenge of whether or not to smoke. Think about how you will handle those situations now so you know what to do when they come up.
Since you are going to be saving money by not buying cigarettes, plan to do something special with the money you save. It is much easier to quit if you have small goals to aim for along the way. Think of ways to reward yourself.
Continue reading: Handling Thoughts About Smoking