How to quit smoking – No ifs, ands or butts

1. Prepare mentally –
It is important to be prepared mentally and have all reasons for quitting listed down on a notebook. The reasons may include to avoid health issues, to please family and children or even financial constraints.

2. Target a date –
Set a target date for quitting. The date could be near immediate if comfortable or a couple of weeks if time required. The date could be the 1st Jan, Birthday or Wedding aniversary. On quitting, the day can be celebrated to mark the occasion.

3. Garner support –
Inform family and close friends of the intention to quit smoking. Support from ones spouse and/or close friends make the quitting easier.

4. Just prior target date –
– Reduce Intake by smoking only half the cigarette or by reducing the number of cigarettes in a day. Reaching for a glass of water or juice instead of the cigarette would help.
– Stop buying cigarettes by the carton and also stop carrying cigarettes to work. This would help since obtaining cigarettes would be difficult as compared to having them in the pocket.

5. On the Target date –
– Throw away all cigarettes, lighters and the match box. Hide or throw away the ashtray as well.
– Remind family to be supportive during the day and for the next couple of weeks.
– Do not sit idle. Exercise, go to work and keep busy.
– Mark the calendar and celebrate the day.

6. Post quitting –
– The inital couple of days would be difficult and hence spend time at places where smoking isn’t allowed.
– Avoid places and situations that earlier were associated with smoking.
– Drink large quantities of water or juice.
– Go for a walk post a meal breathing in the fresh air and reminding oneself of the health benefits.
– Never accompany a friend who smokes. Resist the temptation. Better still associate oneself with a group that has no smokers.

7. Celebrate Milestones –
– Every week or month, celebrate the quit day or date.
– Buy oneself or spouse a gift using the money saved.
– Remind oneself of the advantages and benefits of being a non-smoker.