I was up to about two packs a day then found out I was pregnant. My husband made the deal to quit with me, which helped. At first we used Nicotine gum (a cheap generic brand) to overcome physical addiction. I brought a lot of mucus up out of my chest the first week or so. My husband didn't but he smoked very lightly- like maybe one or two cigarettes per day. I only chewed about 1/8 of a square of gum maybe four times a day mixed in with regular gum, then cut it down from there to wean myself off in ten days. Since I was pregnant I wasn't keen to use a full dose or do the whole regime.
Then I used sunflower seeds in the shells to combat my remaining psychological addiction. I had one seed when I was thinking, "I really could kill for a cigarette right now." Sometimes I would hold a pen like a cigarette in my hand and occasionally "take a puff" which amounted to closing my eyes and taking a deep breath through pursed lips to loosen up that feeling of constriction or closure in my chest. I also kept a pack of cigarettes unopened in my purse for about three years afterward so that I wouldn't experience a total panic attack feeling like I had to go out in the middle of the night to buy some.
When I threw that unopened pack away, it was a great feeling of accomplishment. A guy on the street fished them out the garbage immediately. I explained that they were stale, over three years old. He said, "Waste not want not." It really made me realize how much money I had been throwing away smoking over the years. I was even happier that I quit, although I quit specifically for my unborn son. I think the waste of money was a large factor of my staying quit all these years later. How much good could I have done giving $2.50 per day or whatever the cost of two packs was back then to charity instead of killing my health and polluting the air?
So yeah, ten days to break the physical hold and about three years to break the psychological need. I'll admit I still get a craving every once in a while. It is like craving sardines or moon pies or something else that is kind of gross to me that I really don't want put in my body. A sunflower seed, and I'm good to go knowing I've conquered a really bad habit.