Many times we hear of people trying to quit smoking but succumbing to the urge either because of the discomfort caused by withdrawal or because of the inability to stay strong during the ‘beta phase’ of quitting. The thing most people don’t know about nicotine withdrawal is that the real – the physical withdrawal-only lasts for about a week, ten days max. The weeks of torment which most quitters experience after are usually psychological. Armed with this fact, it gets much easier to bring the psychological withdrawal symptoms into perspective and quit smoking in a stress free manner. Here is a list of 12 easy ways to quit smoking.
1. Just quit
Do not think up a plan of how or when to quit. Just tell yourself that one of these times, you will quit smoking and when the time feels right, just do it. Planning weeks or days in advance and longing for that one last puff before you finally commit will only delay quitting.
2. Start an exercise and relaxation regimen
As soon as you decide to quit, just quit and if you haven’t already, start an exercise regimen. Exercising releases stress and when the urge arises to smoke again, lesser built up stress can help fight that urge effectively. Try to relax at the end of the day in a ritualistic manner. Whatever else you do to quit smoking, ensure you fight stress with exercise. An end of the day compulsory relaxation of all senses and mind will ensure that these easy ways to quit smoking actually work. Guided meditation and hypnosis may also help in quitting.
3. Do it in a group
This is one of the easy ways to quit smoking. Any major decision, especially one like quitting smoking requires tremendous strength. Sometimes, external pressure as well as support is required to keep your mind focused and your body strong enough to ignore the signals from the part of the mind that is still experiencing psychological withdrawal. Peer – pressure as well as support from like – minded individuals helps you stay on track and forming a group is one of the easiest ways to quit smoking.
4. Do it for a loved one
If you are pregnant or there are impressionable children around, or if someone you know is likely to succumb to the habit of chain smoking, it gives you additional strength and greater motivation to finally kick the habit. Think of the bigger reward awaiting you at the end of the ordeal and quitting gets easier. You and your partner/spouse can also decide on quitting bad habits: for example your partner will decide to quit sugar or junk food in exchange for your quitting smoking.
5. Chew gum
Nibbling on a snack or having a coffee helps kick smoking off the curb but both snacking and excess coffee have undesirable side effects. Chewing sugar free gum on the other hand is one of the easy ways to quit smoking. However, beware of grinding your teeth and ache in the jaws.
6. Make little pick me up notes
Write something inspiring on notes and stick them on your dash board, in your bedroom, on your bathroom mirror, near the coffee maker, on the fridge door, toilet door, and the garage door. Something as simple as “Last Cigarette on October 23rd 2015, 11:18 AM” or “I followed easy ways to quit smoking” will keep you from falling off the wagon.
7. Get a new hobby
Get a new hobby that is time consuming and that requires intense concentration, like quilling or sketching etc. This will help relax your mind when you are not busy at work to keep you off cigarettes.
8. Believe in yourself
Tell yourself every morning that you can quit smoking, or that you don’t need to light up in order to relax or get your mind working on a problem or situation. Tell yourself every time you would normally light a cigarette even before the urge sets in that you will relax your mind by doing something other than smoking. Find excuses to not smoke at a given time. Easy ways to quit smoking are only easy if you believe in your own strength to get them to work.
9. Keep triggers at bay
As soon as you decide to quit smoking, make a list of all trigger situations that cause you to smoke. Try to avoid being in such situations for a few weeks at least. At work, try to find different means of diffusing work related stress and mind blocks even before the urge to light up sets in.
If the urge does set in, try to avoid it or delay it. Occupy your mind with a movie, or put on your favorite songs. Simple yet: do not keep cigarettes on hand. The thought of having to drive down to the nearest cigarette shop might help prevent you from lighting up.
11. Do not give in
The urge for the “one last one” can come from inside of you. Or your peers might pressurize you saying they need company. Do not give in. If you think you can control the urge later on, prove to yourself that you can control it now. Besides, it gets easier as it goes. When colleagues smoke in front of you, eat a cracker or chew the gum to resist temptation.
12. Join a support group
If you do not find a group of like-minded individuals trying to quit smoking amongst friends or colleagues, try to start or join an already existing support group which is trying to quit smoking. This will help you share tips as well as learn the experience of people who have been successful in quitting.
As long as you believe it is not easy to quit smoking, it never is. You just have to quit and work at not falling off the wagon.