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About smoking cigarettes: How to quit now

Updated on September 4, 2011

This article has everything you need to know to quit smoking

I was a 1+ pack a day smoker for over 7 years. I quit for 3 months, relapsed, then a year later I quit again for good. I've watched many different people close to me attempt all of the other various methods of quitting and fail. There is only one way that works, and it's really the easiest.

First of all you must actually want to quit

Don't even bother reading this unless YOU really want to quit. A lot of people know they need to quit for health reasons, others are thinking of all the money they are wasting, or have friends or family urging them to, so they decide to try to quit. They get some patches or cut back, putting forth the effort to quit. They usually fail. Why? Because THEY do not really have the desire to stop, they are just doing it because they know they should. If you aren't serious about quitting then there is no use in trying, it will just lead to unnecessary discomfort. That's right, I said it. "Trying" to quit is a waste of your time and morale.

So i'm really ready to quit. How do I do it?

The only way to quit smoking? If you are serious then quit. That's it. Throw or give away what cigarettes you have left and STOP RIGHT NOW. Go out, smoke your "goodbye" cigarette, don't bring the pack back in, then finish this article. Right here, right now. I did it, and it's easier than you think. If you feel like quitting then there is no better time than right now, empower yourself. You aren't so mentally weak that you are still thinking about it, are you? If you want to quit then stop making excuses and stop right now. There is no way you will regret it, you have nothing to lose and much to gain. There is helpful information from my experience further down in the article, but first go smoke that last cigarette and get rid of the pack. It doesn't matter if you have an important meeting tomorrow or some other high stress thing going on at the moment, you will find that the nicotine cravings actually make these things go by more smoothly. Don't worry, the withdrawals are not what they are made out to be. I was at a pack and a half per day and when I quit cold-turkey. Mostly I just felt dazed, like you feel when you go an extra long time without sleep. Don't finish this article then decide whether or not to take my advice, if you want to quit then go smoke your last one right now. This will be here when you get back with some great suggestions to make the experience easier. No excuse is relevant.

You should get a "pacifier"

Making the decision was the hardest part. No that you have stopped you are going to want something to fill that void. I suggest replacing it (for now) with another habit (or habits). If you think that is a bad thing, remember that it can't be worse than cancer and thousands of dollars a year. Many people chew gum, as did I. It definitely works pretty well on the oral fixation front, but it still leaves something to be desired. You still have a chemical void. I suggest that you fill it with caffeine, and lots of it. Yup, make yourself into an irritable, gum chewing, twitching monster. I drank coffee and energy drinks and took gas station energy pills like they were going out of style for about a month after I quit. Every time I felt that hole open up I filled it with caffeine, b12, and niacin instead of nicotine. Sure, this isn't good for you, but it's not nearly as bad (or expensive) as smoking. You get tired of being amped up after a while and the gum gets old too, and by then you will have found other ways of occupying yourself. The first three days are a hazy blur, then you find yourself more and more empowered by day. Find an outlet for this new found energy, something physical preferably( you will be eating more).

Avoid relapse

Lots of people quit smoking and start back. This is called relapse. Avoid it by finding pacifiers and new activities, as I stated above, and maintaining your serenity (not smoking "just one"). I mentioned that I relapsed 3 months in my first time. How? Me and my buddies were drinking after work and their cigarettes smelled especially good(as they will for about six months) that night, so I bummed one. It was delicious. Two days later I bummed another, then another the next day, and so on until I just bought a pack. Within three weeks of that first smoke I was back to a pack a day. That's how it happens, don't let it get you. This doesn't mean you can never smoke one ever again. Knowing the option to smoke one eventually is open makes quitting seem less final and therefore easier. Just be sure to plan it-don't smoke to deal with a stressfull event or on a whim. After 8 months of quitting I planned and smoked ONE cigarette on new years eve to celebrate my accomplishment (I had been wanting to smoke one for old times sake for several weeks) and made myself promise not to smoke another for at least a month. It was pretty good. The next one was two months later and it was disgusting. I now no longer think the smoke smells good at all and can't see how I would ever want to go back.

Enjoy life!

Within a month of quitting you will find yourself waking up more easily and with more energy. Your sense of smell and taste will have improved and you will have more cash in your pocket. Congratulations, you are no longer a servant to cigarettes!


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    • rick combe profile image

      rick combe 5 years ago from USA

      Glad you guys like the hub. Be careful not to relapse! A little wile back I found that one smoke every few weeks had led to one every few days then one every day. I'm good now, but I almost fell right back into it. As nanetteparker's friend said, it's just a matter of self-discipline. One every once in a while is ok, but one every couple of weeks is dangerous territory.

    • Rswilliams8 profile image

      Rswilliams8 6 years ago from Provo, UT

      great post. thanks for sharing

    • nanetteparker profile image

      nanetteparker 6 years ago

      i don't smoke, but i have a friend who has been a chain smoker before. one day we meet and i was amazed because he no longer smoke. when asked how he was able to say goodbye to smoking, he simply said, it is just a matter of self-discipline.. if you put it in your mind that you really want to quit, then always think what you want to achieve whenever you see a stick of cigarette.

    • blairtracy profile image

      blairtracy 6 years ago from Canada

      I couldn't agree more with your "you have to actually want to quite" statement. So many people try to quit knowing that they should quit. But not actually wanting to quit.

    • davenmidtown profile image

      David Stillwell 6 years ago from Sacramento, California

      I think this is a great hub. It is full of first hand advice that is beneficial to anyone who smokes. I like the tone... not preachy... just do it.