Quitting Tip Sheet
1. Quit cold turkey! In the long run it's the easiest, quickest, least expensive and most effective technique of smoking cessation. It only takes 72 hours before your blood becomes nicotine free and the symptoms of physical withdrawal reach their peak. There are over one billion "comfortable" ex-smokers on earth today and almost all of them quit cold turkey.
2. Our minds will quickly forget most of the reasons that made us want to quit smoking. Take the time now to write yourself a loving letter that will fully remind you of all your reasons for quitting. Keep your reasons letter with you and read it often.
3. Get rid of all your cigarettes. All of them! Tell friends and family that you've started a new nicotine free life. Commit completely to your healing!
4. Quit smoking one day at a time. Do not concern yourself with next year, next month, next week or even tomorrow. Concentrate on not smoking from the time you wake-up until you go to sleep. Be patient with your healing. Baby steps!
5. Attitude is extremely important because we are what we think! If we allow our mind to dwell upon negative thoughts like "quitting is hard" and that we're "depriving ourselves of smoking" we can make ourselves miserable. If we allow our mind to dwell upon positive notions like our freedom and healing are wonderful and glorious, or that we're doing ourselves a favor, our journey home can be awesome.
6. Be proud of yourself for not smoking! Don't rely upon others for your self pride.
7. Symptoms such as headache, inability to concentrate, dizziness, time perception distortions and the ubiquitous sweet tooth encountered by many, can be the result of a blood sugar drop that occurs after quitting. Help your body adjust by avoiding white sugar products and by putting small amounts of food (fuel) into your body at least every three hours. Always leave room for more food but never allow yourself to feel hungry. Get your sugar from juices and fruits (cranberry juice is excellent).
8. Be aware that many routine situations will trigger a crave for nicotine. Situations which may trigger a response include: after meals, talking on the phone, driving, drinking, reading, coffee, alcohol, setting in a bar or pub, social events with smoking friends, or even activities like card games. Try to maintain your normal routine while quitting. If any event seems to tough, leave it and go back to it later. Do not feel you must give up any activity forever. Everything you did as a smoker, you will learn to do at least as well, and maybe better, as an ex-smoker.
9. Drink plenty of fruit juice the first three days. It not only helps flush nicotine from your system it will also help raise your blood sugar level. Also, divide your body weight by two. Use the resulting number as the number of ounces of daily water that your body and lungs need for proper healing and flushing.
10. To help avoid weight gain, eat vegetables and fruit instead of candies and pastries. Celery and carrots can be used safely as short-term substitutes for cigarettes. Smoking was your bodies old cue that your meal had ended. Find a new cue.
11. If you are concerned about weight gain, do some moderate form of regular exercise. If you have not been exercising regularly, consult your physician for a practical exercise program which is safe for you.
12. If you encounter a crisis, (e.g. a flat tire, flood, argument, family illness, finances) while quitting, remember, smoking is no solution. Smoking will just complicate the original situation while creating another crisis - full and complete nicotine relapse.
13. Be honest! Truly see yourself as "addicted to nicotine" because you are! Just one puff and you will either immediately or shortly thereafter experience full and complete relapse back to your prior level of nicotine use or higher. Don't look at it as taking just "ONE" puff, look at it as taking them all back. Picture them all.
14. Don't debate with yourself how much you want a "cigarette." You don't crave a cigarette any more than the heroin addict craves a needle. The cigarette and needle are simply drug delivery devices. What you want is the drug inside.
15. Save the money you usually spend on cigarettes and buy yourself something you really want after a week or a month. Save for a year and you can treat yourself to a vacation.
16. Practice deep breathing exercises when you have a craving. Breathe slowly and deeply into the bottom of each lung while clearing your mind of needless chatter.
17. Visualize the challenges ahead (stress, tremendous joy, weight gain, boredom, an accident, a serious illness, the death of a loved one, a funeral, financial problems, the end of a relationship, drinking, extended periods of time around a smoker) and picture yourself successfully overcoming each of them.
18. Climb out of your deep smoker's rut and begin living your new life. Engage in activities that require more than an hour to complete and challenge your new body.
19. Ask yourself how you'd feel about going back to your old level of consumption. Quitting smoking is one of the few propositions in the world where being 99% successful means 100% defeat. It's an all or nothing proposition.
20. Remember that there are only two good reasons to take a puff once you quit. You decide you want to go back to your old level of consumption until smoking cripples and then kills you, or, you decide you really enjoy withdrawal and you want to make it last forever. As long as neither of these options appeal to you - NEVER TAKE ANOTHER PUFF!