Today marks one full year that I have quit smoking cigarettes. I started smoking cigarettes when I was a young lass – just 16 years old. My big joke was that I loved smoking and I would only quit if I got pregnant, which I would then follow with: but I’m never having kids, so I guess I’ll never quit smoking. I loved cigarettes so much and I couldn’t imagine my life without them.
Until one day…I quit smoking (and I don’t even have any kids!) The journey has not been easy, but I can guarantee you that it’s worth it.
The following is how I quit smoking and I believe that anyone who follows these steps can successfully quit.
- You Have To Want To Quit. And I mean you really have to want to. None of this “Oh I wish I could quit,” or “I would love to quit someday,” or my personal favorite, “I’m just going through too much to quit right now.” That’s all some major bull crap. You have to want it, or else you’re just going to give into your cravings and find an excuse to continue your habit. If you don’t really want to quit you’re not going to – bottom line. I know it sounds harsh, but it’s the truth. There will always be something tough to go through in life and you’re going to have to make a choice to go through it without a cigarette. (It’s not as hard as you think).
- Yoga. People must think I’m nuts because yoga is my answer for everything. Oh your back hurts? Try some yoga. You’ve been feeling stressed and unhappy? Yoga will do you wonders! I SWAER IT’S THAT GOOD! I wound’t recommend it if I didn’t personally reap the many many wonderful benefits of yoga. Why is it good for someone who wants to quit smoking? For starters, yoga is all about your breath. Second, it teaches you how to be still with what is. Yoga really helps you overcome hardships and helps you deal with things in a healthy way. Some people drink and smoke to relieve stress. I yoga my stress (aka cigarette cravings) away. A lot of the reason I smoked was because of anxiety related reasons and the yoga really helped me in that department by helping me realize that I am capable of living and dealing with things without cigarettes.
- Find A Support System & Stay Away From Smokers. Now let me set this straight, I’m not saying get rid of your friends who smoke. I’m saying keep yourself away from smokey situations until you trust yourself enough to be around cigarettes without giving into temptation. Also, being around people who support your goal are key. When I first told a few people that I was quitting smoking, I remember one response in particular was, “You’ll be smoking again in a month.” That is not a supportive person. What I find is best is not to share your journey to quit with them because they don’t want to see you better yourself.Those people are just waiting for you to slip up and will most likely be the first ones to taunt you a, “Let’s go smoke,” offer. Instead, share your journey with people who support what you’re doing and encourage you.
- Quit With A Buddy. I quit with my boyfriend and I truly believe I wouldn’t have quit if it wasn’t for him quitting with me. The first couple months was hard for me and if he would have still been smoking, I would be smoking. Having another person quit with you can be dangerous if they fall off the wagon, however, so make sure you both are really committed to quitting. The nice thing is, is that after a while of being a non-smoker, you’re more likely to continue on the quitter’s path regardless of what your buddy does. For example, now that I’ve been cigarette free for a year, I feel confident that if my boyfriend ever started smoking again, I know I wouldn’t because I don’t want to pick the disgusting habit back up again.
- Try Vaping To Ween Off Cigarettes. This is how my man and I did it. We bought vaporizers and stopped smoking tobacco cigarettes. We did this for about two months and I noticed that the smell of cigarettes was becoming very gross to me. We stopped vaping after having one tobacco cigarette and realizing how disgusting they really were. They tasted like poop and the next morning it felt like there was a heavy weight on my chest. That was when we decided we’ve had enough and put both tobacco cigarettes down along with the vaporizors. Some people don’t like vaping because it’s not the same feel of a cigarette and I get that. The reason I recommend it is because if you can only vape for a month or longer, if you do have a tobacco cigarette, you will never want another one again.
- Don’t Give Up. I’m not going to lie to you, I had a hard time the first few months, but it gets easier. Do I still have cravings? Yes. Sometimes when I’m around someone smoking I get an urge to have a smoke. Those are the times I look at how far I’ve come and see the improvements in my health. I can actually walk up the starts without getting out of breath. I was just recently sick and you know that gross chest mucous you get when you smoke? Nope – it’s gone. I didn’t get it and it made being sick awesome. Once you start experiencing those changes, you won’t want to give up your progress.
- Find a Healthy Way To Deal With Your Cigarette Triggers. What I mean by this is find a way to deal with the “I need a cigarette” tape that plays in your head during a craving. This is why I put yoga on he list because it did that for me. I know yoga is not for everyone, so I encourage you to explore different options and see what you like. Maybe it’s running. Maybe it’s painting. Maybe it’s something as simple as listening to music or reading a book. Whatever it is, just make sure it’s going to better you rather than doing something that will replace your bad habit with another bad habit.
With all of that said, I hope you find this piece helpful. When you think you can’t do it, just keep in mind that I was a 2-packs-a-day smoker who was nicknamed “Ciggie Queen” who also swore she’d never quit. And look at me now! Ciggie free for a year.
Let me know your story in the comments below! Are you trying to quit? Have you already quit? How long have you been a quitter? Share your stories with me to keep the inspiration flowing! Plus, I love hearing your stories and like to see how other people do things.
Today marks my anniversary. Remember that today can mark yours too.