Don't Smoke Automatically

by phat freakz

Pick the ideas that make sense to you. And then follow through - you'll have a much better chance of success.


PREPARING YOURSELF FOR QUITTING...

-Decide positively that you want to quit. Try to avoid negative thoughts about how difficult it might be.

-List all the reasons you want to quit. Every night before going to bed, repeat one of the reasons 10 times.

-Develop strong personal reasons in addition to your health and obligations to others. For example, think of all the time you waste taking cigarette breaks, rushing out to buy a pack, hunting for a light, etc.

-Begin to condition yourself physically: Start a modest exercise program; drink more fluids; get plenty of rest; and avoid fatigue.

-Set a target date for quitting - perhaps a special day such as your birthday, your anniversary, or the Great American Smoke out. If you smoke heavily at work, quit during your vacation so that you're already committed to quitting when you return. Make the date sacred, and don't let anything change it. This will make it easy for you to keep track of the day you became a nonsmoker and to celebrate that date every year.


KNOWING WHAT TO EXPECT...

-Have realistic expectations - quitting isn't easy, but it's not impossible either. More than 3 million Americans quit every year.

-Understand that withdrawal symptoms are TEMPORARY. They usually last only 1-2 weeks.

-Know that most relapses occur in the first week after quitting, when withdrawal symptoms are strongest and your body is still dependent on nicotine. Be aware that this will be your hardest time, and use all your personal resources - willpower, family, friends, and the tips in this booklet - to get you through this critical period successfully.

-Know that most other relapses occur in the first 3 months after quitting, with situational triggers - such as a particularly stressful event - occur unexpectedly. These are the times when people reach for cigarettes automatically, because they associate smoking with relaxing. This is the kind of situation that's hard to prepare yourself for until it happens, so it's especially important to recognize it if it does happen. Remember that smoking is a habit, but a habit you can break.

-Realize that most successful ex-smokers quit for good only after several attempts. You may be one of those who can quit your first try. But if you're not, DON'T GIVE UP. Try again.

INVOLVING SOMEONE ELSE...

-Bet a friend you can quit on your target date. Put your cigarette money aside for every day, and forfeit it if you smoke. (But if you do smoke, DON'T GIVE UP. Simply strengthen your resolve and try again.)

-Ask your spouse or a friend to quit with you.

-Tell your family and friends that you're quitting and when. They can be an important source of support, both before and after you quit.

WAYS OF QUITTING...

Switch brands. Switch to a brand you find distasteful.

-Change to a brand that's low in tar and nicotine a couple of weeks before your target date. This will help change your smoking behavior. However, DO NOT smoke more cigarettes, inhale them more often or more deeply, or place your fingertips over the holes in the filters. All of these will increase your nicotine intake, and the idea is to get your body used to functioning without nicotine

Cut down the number of cigarettes you smoke.

-Smoke only half of each cigarette.

-Each day, postpone lighting your first cigarette 1 hour.

-Decide you'll smoke only during odd or even hours of the day.

-Decide beforehand how many cigarettes you'll smoke during the day. For each additional cigarette, give a dollar to your favorite charity.

-Change your eating habits to help you cut down. For example, drink milk, which many people consider incompatible with smoking. End meals or snacks with something that won't lead to a cigarette.

-Reach for a glass of juice instead of a cigarette for a "pick-me-up."

-Remember, Cutting down can help you quit, but it's not a substitute for quitting. If you're down to about seven cigarettes a day, it's time to set your target date and get ready to stick to it.

Don't Smoke "Automatically"

-Smoke only those cigarettes you really want. Catch yourself before you light up a cigarette out of pure habit.

-Don't empty your ashtrays. This will remind you of how many cigarettes you've smoked each day, and the sight and smell of stale butts will be very unpleasant.

-Make yourself aware of each cigarette by using the opposite hand or putting cigarettes in an unfamiliar location or a different pocket to break the automatic reach.

-If you light up many times during the day without even thinking about it, try to look in a mirror each time you put a match to your cigarette - you may decide you don't need it.

Make smoking inconvenient

-Stop buying cigarettes by the carton. Wait until one pack is empty before you buy another.

-Stop carrying cigarettes with you at home and at work. Make

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