How To Quit Smoking Cold Turkey
If you’re wondering how to quit smoking cold turkey because you have heard it is the most successful way of quitting, you have heard correctly. Of all the way is too in nicotine addiction—patches, injections, gum—but the method that has proven to be most successful for long-term smokers is to simply stop smoking. To non-smokers, “simply stop smoking” might seem like a reasonable way to quit. But any smoker who has ever tried to quit before, know that it is never as simple as sheer determination. Knowing why specifically you are quitting is what is going to get you through even the worst of withdrawals. Here are some tips to make your attempt successful:
- Pick a Date Choose a day at least two weeks in the future as your quit date. You can keep it private, but sharing it with your partner or close friends will create some accountability for you.
- Start a List A week before you quit, stick a piece of paper on your fridge on your nightstand. Whenever you think of one of the reasons you’re quitting, add it to the list. In the midst of withdrawal, you’re not going to remember all the reasons you have decided to quit smoking. Having this list will remind you of all the reasons you’re quitting and show you that the voice in your head telling you to go smoke is the nicotine talking, not you.
- Change Your Pattern On the days leading up to your quit date, start changing up your smoking patterns. Switch which hand you smoke with, sit on a different bench during a smoke break, or buy a different brand of cigarettes. When you’re quitting smoking, you have to break both nicotine addiction and your habit of smoking. Start breaking the habit even before your quit date to ease the process of withdrawals.
- Visualize Everyone knows that if you can’t imagine it, you can achieve it. Spend some time thinking about what your life would be like without cigarettes. If all you can think of all the things about cigarettes that you will crave once you quit, remind yourself that the majority of Americans go every day without smoking or even wanting to. They’re no different than you, and you can also achieve that independence from smoking.
- Create Rewards Before you quit, brainstorm ways you can reward yourself each day you don’t smoke. Once you have quit smoking, all your brain is going to come up with is “I deserve a cigarette for trying so hard” and that is not going to get you anywhere. Come up with foods to eat, places to go, things to do that you consider decadent to reward yourself for resisting the urge to smoke. One way to do this is to save all the money you would be spending on cigarettes and spending it on something special instead. If you spend $5.50 on a pack of cigarettes and smoke six cigarettes a day, after one year smoke-free you will have saved enough to buy yourself a laptop!
- Quit! On your quit date, throw out or giveaway any cigarettes you still have. Make sure you have the list you made handy—you may even want to keep it in your wallet. Don’t think about tomorrow or next month. Focus on today. Instead of dwelling on the idea that you are depriving yourself of the cigarette, remind yourself that you are ridding yourself of an addiction. Give yourself a break—leave the laundry for tomorrow or slack off on a homework assignment. Treat yourself gently. Eat healthy foods, especially fruit juice, as it will help get the nicotine out of your system faster. Try not to focus on how good it would be to have a cigarette; instead, remind yourself how badly you no longer want to be addicted.