Start Prepping Now to Quit Smoking on January 2018
Congratulations on your decision to quit smoking as a New Year's Resolution. If you have tried to quit before, you will know that the first few weeks are very difficult. However, if you put good systems in place now, your success will be much more likely.
I have to admit, that I likely quit 15 to 20 times before I finally did stop smoking. I also have to say that those attempts were half-hazard, not well-thought out, unplanned, and usually the result of a spontaneous decision.
What made me finally quit for good, more than three years ago, were some plans I put into place. The number one thing, was getting my head right. How did I do that? Believe it or not, I read a book.
The Easy Way to Stop Smoking
I have recommended this book, written by Allen Carr, to many smokers. People like myself, who have found freedom, simply want others to experience it too. It is truly exhilarating being free from the weed, and we want to pass that message of hope along to others.
Basically, this book is cognitive therapy. Here's how it works. As a smoker, you are brainwashed into believing that smoking is a good thing - something you deserve, a reward, a means to relax etc. This book, however, little by little, makes you realize that nothing is further than the truth. This book will make you realize that you are a slave to a toxic, addictive substance that actually causes stress n the form of a craving every 30 minutes, tastes bad and smells awful. You will realize that by freeing yourself, you will gain confidence while you rid yourself of your worst enemy. By the end of the book, you will be happy to ditch the cancer sticks.
Choose your aids
The nicotine patch with vapor cigarettes worked for me
While Allen Carr recommends people quit smoking cold turkey, and many do find success this way, I decided to add the nicotine patch and vapor cigarettes (that contained no nicotine) to my successful quit plan. If I had a continuous source of nicotine going into my body, I would not need any cigarettes for nicotine. However, I realized I still would want cigarettes due to the psychological part of smoking. There was a part of me that wanted to hold something in my hand, and to breath something into my lungs. The vapor cigarette, which was flavored with black cherry or vanilla, was the perfect solution. It tasted better than a real cigarette and allowed me to breath something into my lungs.
In my own successful quit, I used the nicotine patch for about 3 weeks, along with the vapor cigarettes, which I continued to use alone for another 2 weeks, and then just occasionally for a few months, until the point and time where I realized I needed nothing and that I was completely free.
There are various other aids to quit smoking, including e-cigarettes, (which actually do contain nicotine) nicotine gum, lozenges and prescription drugs. Be careful you do not get too much tobacco into your system while trying to quit. by combining aids that contain nicotine.
Decide how to handle social situations now
If you are out with smoking friends, how will you handle this? It is best to think about this ahead of time, so that when you are faced with this situation, you already have a plan in place.
Maybe for the first month or so, you may decide to completely try to avoid these situations.
In my own case, unexpectedly, just four days after I had quit, three smoking friends dropped by for a visit. We sat and socialized on my back deck on the patio table. I had three packs of cigarettes all within arms reach of me, but resisted that temptation for hours, hauling away on on a vapor cigarette like there was no tomorrow - to the point where I was worried the vapor might run out.
I was amazed as anyone that I stayed so strong that night. It was a test - an impromptu, expected one that I had passed with flying colors. I knew I could make it after that.
Do you normally go out to smoke with coworkers? How will you handle this? Will you take a walk? What if they pressure you? (Peer pressure doesn't end in high school, unfortunately)
Passing tests will be difficult, but the proverbial pat on the back you can give yourself when you are done is so very rewarding.
Sign up for daily reminders
Keep your head in the game by reinforcing positive messages.
Here is one that will give you daily encouragement in the form of an email.
Join a support group, in person or online
Why not sign up today on a quit smoking message board or facebook friends. Introduce yourself and speak of your plans. This can be a great source of encouragement and useful tips.
Check out this link to help you set up and follow a quit plan, check your daily money savings, keep track of your smoke-free days, celebrate successes as you pass milestones etc.
Replace your bad habit with a healthy one
Consider a new healthy habit to keep your mind off of smoking.
Will it be roller skating, playing hockey, soccer, going to the gym?
Maybe it will be learning how to create new, healthy recipes and cooking methods?
Write down your plans
In this Harvard study, learn why you will have better success if you actually write your plans down on paper.
Maybe you want to lose weight and quit smoking. I have seen people do it. Check out this article about how to plan ahead for a successful New Year's Eve Resolution to lose weight. With the right mindset, anything is possible.
Have you tried to quit smoking before? Have you failed? Succeeded? Any tips or advice or questions are welcomed in the comment section below.