"How to Quit Smoking and Stay Quit"
Boston, Massachusetts USA
Quit smoking! Si, se puede!
I smoked 1 to 2 packs a day for 10 years and this is how I quit smoking.
I've passed this on to three lifelong smoker friends of mine who wanted to quit, and they all succeeded using this method.
In fact, they said it was "easy"!
Steps 1 - 3: before you quit
1. Psych yourself up for it.
Realize why you want to quit (and it has to be for you - it can't be because someone else wants you to.)
Then think about why you want to quit everytime you have a cigarette.
2. Start counting cigarettes and try to cut down some.
This is just to make you conscious of how much you smoke, when you smoke, and that you actually control how much you smoke.
Try giving up some cigarettes before "quitting". Realize that you won't implode by doing so.
3. Pick a quit date.
You will feel like shit when you quit, but just think of it as being "sick". Plan for this. The first major hump is the three day mark; then you'll start to feel better.
During the first three days, don't plan to go out drinking, don't work on something stressful, don't hang out with smoker friends, don't call your mom if talking to her makes you want to chain smoke - just allow yourself to focus on not having even one cigarette.
Steps 4 - 6: herbal medicines
4. Get lots of licorice root (in root/ twig form).
Chew on a piece when you crave a cigarette. It provides the oral fix, and amazingly eases the nicotine urge.
5. Get an herbal tincture for quitting smoking.
I used one from The Herbalist, a company on line,but I've also found others by local herbalists in healthfood stores. Look for something that has LOBELIA - it acts as a nicotine blocker in your brain. The other ingredients should be detox related (like milk thistle) and calming (like oats). Take it 3 times a day for a month. OK, it's not cheap, but neither are cigarettes. And it's only for a month.
6. Get an herbal tincture for calming your nerves.
You're going to feel pretty edgy at first, so plan for it. I recommend Kava Kava daily for the first two weeks, then as needed.
Steps 7 and 8: learning to breath, smell and taste
7. Breathe deeply.
Smoking is one way to set aside a moment to take a deep breath. Don't give that up now that you've quit - you need that!
Get some exercise/ deep breathing everyday so that you can start enjoying your newfound lung capacity.
I went to the playground and swung on the swings everyday when I first quit.
8. Treat your senses of smell and taste.
It's a whole new world of smell and taste! Eat complexly flavored foods (like Indian, Vietnamese). Sample essential oils and perfumes. Smell the pine needles on the forest floor.
Step 9: reward yourself
9. Give yourself little rewards for major time markers.
Suggested blocks of time to reward:
*At three months, get yourself something really, really good.*
Step 10: if it worked for you, share the wealth