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Preparing to quit

“If you fail to plan, you may be planning to fail”

  • Decide when your quit date will be and write it down.
  • Write down your own personal reasons why you want to stop smoking.
  • Write down what the major benefits of stopping smoking will be to you
  • Remind yourself what the reasons were for previous quit attempts not to be successful – use these experiences to help you succeed this time
  • Remember that ‘just the one’ cigarette will start you smoking again. Don’t be tempted!
  • Remind yourself what helped on previous quit attempts – remind yourself what did not help.
  • Be confident, positive, focused and remain determined – it can be done!
  • Think of alternative activities you can enjoy instead of smoking – write them down. When you get the urge to smoke it may be difficult to think of alternatives at the time, it will be easier if you have one or two written down.
  • Remember that these urges to smoke will last less than 5 minutes – take each urge one at a time. Make the choice ‘at this moment I choose not to smoke’. Enjoy the feeling of taking back control – it is really empowering.
  • The longer you remain totally smoke free the less often you will get these urges and the less intense they will become.
  • Ask your family, friends or work colleagues for support and help. Ask them not to smoke in front of you and not to offer cigarettes.
  • Start to look forward to your quit date, allow yourself to become excited at the real prospect of breaking the chains and becoming free from smoking.
  • Remove all cigarettes and tobacco, lighters, matches and ashtrays the night before your quit date.
  • Check all the pockets of coats, jackets, check handbags or briefcases for any stray cigarettes.
  • Clean the car out – empty the ashtray, make sure there are no cigarettes in the glove compartment or door bins.
  • Use sufficient nicotine replacement products if you are using it to relieve any withdrawal symptoms.
  • Sip cold water, brush your teeth, chew sugar free mints or gum, eat more fruit, visit smoke free establishments, theatres or the cinema.
  • Remember that too much alcohol may weaken your resolve – you may even forget that you are a non-smoker. Be careful!
  • Start thinking of yourself as a non-smoker.
  • If someone offers you a cigarette say “No thank you, I don’t smoke”, be polite, but say it with confidence. Practice saying it out loud to yourself.
  • Reward yourself: save the money you would have spent on cigarettes and use it to treat yourself to something very expensive – you can afford it now!

Remind yourself of some of the benefits to your health when you stop smoking.