The Secret to Kicking Your Smoking Habit for Good
Does this sound like you? You’ve smoked on and off for years, always wanting to quit for good, but never quite being able to make the commitment to a smoke-free life. Perhaps you’ve even quit for a few months, only to go back to your same old habits. Well, it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are some tips to help you kick your smoking habit to the curb – forever.
See the Benefits
It’s easier to get the motivation to quit when you can see the long-term (or even short-term) benefits that you’ll get from putting out that cigarette for good. What would change in your life? Would you possibly live longer? Have more energy? Save money? Live stink-free? Whatever your motivation to quit might be, it can be a strong force in your success. Anytime you get the urge to light up, simply visualize whatever benefits motivate you most.
Don’t Go it Alone
You don’t have to do it completely on your own! There are many options available to help you quit, including patches, programs – even chewing gums. All are designed to help reduce your cravings and get you through those times when you just can’t do it by yourself.
By embarking on a healthier lifestyle and eating lots of antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables, and drinking lots of water, you can actually flush your body of dangerous carcinogens and other toxins caused by smoking.
Exercise Your Demons
Getting some form of exercise on a daily basis – whether it’s a walk, run, bike-ride, or simply taking the stairs – can make a big difference when you’re trying to quit smoking. In fact, research has shown that when it comes to overall health, exercise can promote better sleep, prevent weight gain, and boost your mood – all things that may be affected by your decision to quit.
Revise Your Routine
Because your daily routine will now be lacking your typical smoke-breaks, you’ll need to occupy yourself with other activities to fill that void. If you generally smoke after a meal, brush your teeth instead, or go for a short walk. If you smoke in the car, try chewing gum or sipping on water or other beverages. And, try to go to only non-smoking restaurants and events.
Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing have been shown to help in stressful situations, and quitting smoking is no exception! Aim for five minutes of deep breathing per day with this technique: close your eyes, breathe in through your nose slowly, hold that breath for five seconds, then exhale slowly through your mouth.
Form a Support Network
It’s not easy to quit when friends and family members are smokers as well, so enlist the support of non-smoking buddies – people who you can go to when the going gets tough. It can also be helpful to get the input of your healthcare provider, who may have additional advice. You’ll need all the support and encouragement you can get, so don’t be afraid to ask!
Don’t Give Up
A slip-up here and there doesn’t mean that you’ve failed! If you stay positive in your effort to quit, you’ll soon be back on track and that much closer to reaching your goal of being smoke-free.