- 1. Set a date!
You can always put off quitting by saying “I’ll do it tomorrow” or “I’ll do it next week” or “I’ll do it after my birthday” etc. But if you set a date and stick to it, you’ll be a lot more motivated, and you’ll have time to come up with a plan too.
- 2. Make a Plan
It’s really difficult to quit without a plan – you might get caught out by cravings being stronger that you thought, and decide to “just have one” which then always leads to more. By making a plan you can be prepared for anything. Speaking of which...
- 3. Know how to handle cravings
When you first quit, cravings can be really overwhelming - so by having a list of things you can do instead of having a cigarette you can help beat those feelings. Have a look at our 4 ways to keep cigarette cravings at bay for inspiration.
- 4. Mix up your techniques
Maybe you want to try nicotine replacement therapy, or give counselling a shot to help you quit. Don't be afraid to try more than technique at once. Chat to your GP about what you think will be best.
- 5. Know your motivation
Why do you want to quit - worried about how bad it is for your health? Want to improve your fitness? Or is the cost draining your wallet? Note these down and have them around to remind you exactly how quitting smoking will benefit you.
- 6. Get a support crew
Make sure to tell people you're quitting – this can help motivate you and also gives you a support network you can chat to about what you're struggling with. You could also try to quit with someone else, to help motivate each other.
- 7. Watch your diet
Certain foods can actually help suppress your appetite for cigarettes, and certain drinks can make the cravings for them stronger. Try to eat plenty of fruit and vegetables and try to avoid having a lot of coffee or alcoholic drinks as these can trigger the need for a cigarette. Keep a food diary to keep a note of how different food and drink affects your cravings, and then try to tailor your food and drink around that.
- 8. Reward yourself
Rewarding yourself for a task well done is a classic and effective way to encourage positive behaviour. You might need rewards every day during the first week as this is often the most difficult, but then those can turn into weekly or monthly rewards as time goes on. It could be treating yourself to a new top or keeping a scrapbook of your achievements.