40 tips for a successful quit
1. It's not as hard as you think. Once you begin to be honest with yourself and to look at the facts about smoking, it will become a pleasure to remove this addiction from your life.
2. Square off with your smoking habit. Look at it and size it up. Ask yourself exactly what it is doing for you; then ask yourself what it is not doing for you. You can begin with your hair and work your way down to the tips of your toes. It is a medical fact that smoking affects every organ in the human body in a harmful way.
3. Look at quitting cigarettes as giving yourself a gift - a very big gift. You are giving yourself a better quality of life and, very possibly, a longer life. You are giving yourself a healthier body. You are giving yourself more self-esteem. Wrap all this in a package and look at it for the gift it really is, then "Go for it"!
4. Set a date. Make a commitment. Give it a try. Remember, it is alright if you don't succeed at first. Just keep trying. The only way you can lose is by ceasing to try.
5. Don't look at it as if you are giving up something. This makes it seem too much like a loss. What you are really doing is tossing something out of your life that has done you harm and doesn't belong here anymore. You are throwing away pure garbage. No longer are you going to allow your lungs to be resting place for nicotine and tars.
6. Always keep a positive attitude. After all, this is one of the most positive things you've ever done. Stay away from negative people and worrisome situations.
7. Quit for yourself. Even though your family and loved ones will benefit tremendously from your quitting, it is you that will benefit the most.
8. Treat giving up smoking with the respect it rightly deserves. Become willing to go to any lengths to remove it from your life. If you are not willing, try praying for the willingness. This usually works.
9. Look up the word "nicotine" in your dictionary and write down the definition in big letters: "A poisonous alkaloid used as an insecticide." Put it where you can see it.
10. Don't say "I'll take my chances" and continue to smoke. They are not ours to take. We didn't give ourselves life and we don't have the right to "take our chances" on giving it away. That is up to a higher power.
11. Don't fool yourself by saying you have too many pressures in your life right now to give up cigarettes. If you are smoking, this in itself is a pressure, a very great pressure. Every day is a gamble and your life is at stake. By getting nicotine out of your life, other things will become easier to handle. You will feel better about yourself and you will have more energy. You will have accomplished something more meaningful than all the money and material objects you could ever acquire. You will have given yourself what no one else could give you. You will no longer have the pressure of being a smoker.
12. Don't use the excuse that you might gain weight to justify your continuing to smoke. Even if you do gain a little, the fact that you will be more active and will get more exercise should counteract any weight gain. Remember, overeating, not stopping smoking, causes weight gain.
13. Plan to do things that will keep your mind off smoking. Sometimes our minds can be our worst enemies. They will tell us that we need a cigarette for just about any reason that is handy at the time. By doing things like going to the movies in the non-smoking section, munching on corn or sucking on a lollipop, we can keep our minds occupied and get a break. Go to museums and other places where smoking isn't allowed. Swimming is a good idea, too.
14. Quit smoking one day at a time and think only about the part of the day your are in. "I am not going to smoke before noon." "I am not going to smoke before 3 o'clock." Sometimes just do it one hour at a time. This is a lot easier than trying to quit forever.
15. Don't subject yourself to smoky situations. If you do come in contact with someone who is smoking, just say to yourself, "He is having the cigarette I might be having", then, be grateful you don't have to have it.
16. While you are quitting, look at it as an investment. Once you have quit for one hour, you have invested this hour in becoming a healthier person. Now, invest one more hour. Continue to add to your investment hour by hour. It will grow and become more valuable as the hours go by. You will begin to see and feel the rewards from this investment more and more. Protect and guard it just as you would a treasure.
17. Start being kind to yourself. It is the beginning of a new way of life for you and you are the most important one there. Treat yourself with respect and love and remember, you are no longer filling you system with poison every few minutes. Breathe the clean air and breathe it deeply. Smell the different and wonderful fragrances. Begin to spend time outdoors close to nature. Many new sensations await you.
18. Don't get too angry. If we are angry, our minds tell us we need a cigarette to cope. Until your mind learns that it doesn't need a cigarette to cope, try to avoid situations that might be setting you up. Avoid certain people that may bother you. If you can't get some time off, quit smoking on a long weekend. Avoid, as best you can, things like getting stuck in traffic. Use a lot of caution. Anger can be very destructive.
19. Don't get too hungry. It is amazing how our minds will tell us that everything's wrong when all we really need to do is eat.
20. Don't get too tired. If we are tired, it is easy to become irritated and when we get irritated our minds will tell us that a cigarette will help. Our overall resistance becomes weak and it is easy to say, "Oh well, I guess I'll have a smoke."
21. Don't get too lonely. It is good to know some people who are going through the same thing.
22. You can remember these four things by the word "HALT": Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired. If you feel you need a cigarette, check. Make sure you are not experiencing any of these.
23. Don't get too bored. It is hard to just sit and not smoke. Keep busy. Find things to do that you enjoy. Bike riding, hiking, swimming, exploring new places, trying new restaurants. This is the time to indulge yourself.
24. Have something to fidget with. We are accustomed to holding a cigarette; being without one might leave our hands at a loss. Get a small rubber ball or a yo-yo. Play dough is good also or a piece of clay.
25. Have something handy to put in your mouth. Life Savers, sugarless gum, lollipops, etc. Avoid fattening foods like cookies. They don't last long and they fill you up. Experiment while you are still smoking to see what will relieve the craving. If Life Savers work, then stock up.
26. If you always have a cigarette with a cup of coffee, stop drinking coffee before you quit smoking.
27. Don't drink alcohol while you are quitting. Once alcohol is in you system your defenses will be greatly diminished.
28. Remember that the discomfort you experience in the first 2 weeks will definitely come to an end and you will never have to go through it again.
29. Frequently give yourself a pat on the back. What you are doing isn't easy by any means. It takes a lot of guts to try to quit smoking.
30. If you are feeling pain from withdrawal, let it become a lasting memory to serve as a reminder of exactly how strong the drug nicotine is and how hooked you really are.
31. Remember: every minute you were sucking on cigarettes they were sucking on you. They were sucking the very life out of you. Don't let them have any more.
32. Avoid the self-pity trap. If we begin to feel sorry for ourselves, our minds will tell us that we deserve a cigarette to make us feel better.
33. Remember: if you just keep trying, you will win. It is good against evil and the odds are stacked in your favor.
34. Before quitting, plan your activities for the first few days after you quit. This way you won't have to make too many decisions while you are withdrawing. At first, making decisions may be hard without a cigarette.
35. If you are not going to quit right away, then start cutting down. If you smoke 2 packs a day and you cut back 1 cigarette a day for a month, you will be down to just 10 cigarettes a day. Some people, however, have found cutting back to be almost as hard as quitting.
36. Drink lots of liquids to help flush the poison out of your system. Orange juice is good because smoking depletes the Vitamin C content in our bodies.
37. Remember: it is the first cigarette that gets you started. It takes only one. This is the one you can't have. You can always put off lighting that first one for a little while. Don't fool yourself and think you can start and stop at will. You can't. Many people have tried this and gone on to live the rest of their lives never to experience freedom from nicotine again.
38. Frequently remind yourself about the differences you have noticed in yourself. Things like: your breath no longer smells like a dirty ashtray, your fingers aren't stained from tobacco, that sickly sounding smoker's cough is disappearing, your senses of smell and taste are returning, your complexion is beginning to improve, your general attitude about yourself is better because you are beginning to really care about yourself.
39. Give it away. Whenever you have a chance to give your experience, strength, and hope to another smoker, use it. This act of giving will insure your chances for staying off nicotine and give strength to others who need it. There is much reward in helping someone else to gain freedom from this harmful substance.
40. Have a follow-up program. Don't assume it is over because you have made it through a couple of weeks. Nicotine is very cunning.
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