National No Smoking Day – 8 Tips to Stop Smoking
Now the more astute among will already be saying “Hang on, No Smoking Day was 14th March”, last Wednesday, and of course they’d be right. Many people who are following this Annual PR Campaign aimed at dropping the awful weed should already be on day three of their own personal campaign. The sad reality is that many fall at this first hurdle. Many will have gotten through No Smoking Day itself and possibly even the day after (yesterday), but many more fall at the 2 -3 day point which is why I have left it until today to offer my own tips for stubbing out your last cigarette and never smoking again.
There are, of course, many resources and organisations out there offering their own tips to help you quit the habit. Many of my tips may sound much the same as theirs. But, I do feel there is something to be said for taking your advice from a guy who has not only helped hundreds of people to quit but is also down on your level and not some faceless glossy website or organisation to whom you are probably just another statistic. It’s possible, therefore, that my tips are written in a more humanistic style. So lets have a look at the tips shall we?
- A question of semantics! Look at the terminology you are using when you are talking about quitting, not only with other people, but yourself too. The mind has a habit of seizing on excuses and anything that can be turned into an excuse when addressing a habit, especially an addictive one. Take “No Smoking Day” as an example. This quite clearly states that 14th March was declared as a day on which you would not smoke. But, it infers that it is okay to smoke on any other day. 14th March was merely A day on which you shouldn’t smoke. Likewise, saying that you’re “Giving up” can infer that you are losing something you’d rather not lose. What do you do when you lose your car keys? You look for them and find them of course. Wouldn’t it be far better to say “You’re letting it go”? In that way, psychologically you remain in control. It is your choice.
- Want to -v- Need to. Okay this one really belongs in the first tip on semantics. But it is present in everyone who is quitting the habit so I feel it deserves it’s own mention. Of all the enquiries I get concerning this issue, I turn away a good 20% of them saying come back when you’re ready. These are the people that are saying they need to give up smoking. They are the ones being nagged by their spouse, family, friend and/or their GP and have finally said they’ll try, as much for a quiet life as anything. Simply, they don’t really want to. Those that do want to I take on in a heartbeat because they are showing a clear desire to drop the habit.
- The Money Motivator. Anyone who has attempted giving up in the past knows this one. How much is it costing you? Take an average Pack of cigarettes costing say £5.40 at today’s prices. So an average 20 p/day smoker will be spending this much each and every day. £5.40 x 7 = £37.80 in a week or x 30 = £162 in a month. That’s a decent day out for the family. At the very least it makes balancing the monthly food shopping a little easier. Try the yearly figure. Based on the above you’d save £1971!!! That’s a holiday! All this said though, I’ve found in my experience that it is helpful to take it one step further with this and examine where the money that people spend on the habit is going. Obviously the tobacco company have a huge mark-up! It probably costs around 20p to manufacture 20 cigarettes. So they’re making a mammoth profit to start with. The other great benefactor of course is the Tax Man. Around two thirds of the price of any packet of cigarettes goes straight into the treasury coffers. Aren’t you taxed enough? Don’t you think you pay enough of your hard earned cash to the Government already without voluntarily giving them more?
- Tell EVERYONE! You have the desire to stop. You’re going to do it! You’re happy with your choice. So what is stopping you from telling everyone the good news? In truth, people don’t tell others that they’ve chosen to give up because then they don’t look so bad if/when they fail. You have firmly resolved to stop smoking and you are stubbornly going to refuse to smoke. So rejoice in your decision! Shout it from the roof tops! Tell your friends, your family, the man in the street, your neighbours, even your pet budgie. Let EVERYONE know! Because if you start to struggle, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at what a wonderful resource they can all be that you can lean on. At the very least they’ll understand why you’re a bit cranky and a bit of an arse for a few days.
- Research the health benefits. Write them down and tick them off as you begin to notice them. Breathing easier, being able to smell better, taste better, coughing less are all the obvious ones. There are many more. If you’re struggling to find them email me! I’d be happy to send you the fact sheet which lists not only what they are but when you’re likely to be able to expect them happening.
- Get rid! Of all the smoking related paraphernalia from your home. Ashtrays, lighters, matches the lot. Don’t just put them away or hide them, throw them away! After all, you’re not going to need them any more are you? So why keep them? The last thing you need is to be reminded of is a habit that belongs to an obsolete part of your life, let alone being able to lay your hands on the tools needed in a moment of weakness.
- Get Professional Help. Of course I would say this wouldn’t I? After all I am the sort of professional help you should be looking for. Furthermore retaining the services of a hypnotherapist or other professional is going to cost you and you won’t start saving toward that holiday quite as soon. But you’ll be able to find this sort of help for less than your monthly cigarette budget and let’s face it, is a far better way of spending your money than that outlined above. Your friends and family will of course help you, but there’s nothing quite like having a professional who knows exactly what you’re going through before you even go through it.
- Plan. Know your dangers spots. Those times when you’d normally light up a cigarette. After a meal, driving the car, smoke breaks at work, when you’re on the phone. Know them and plan for them. Plan to do something else. Plan to have something to fiddle with to keep your hands busy or even remove yourself from that situation entirely if practical.
So there you go. Eight tips that will go some way in enabling you to drop the filthy habit. Of course there are many more and possibly I might have gone a little to deep in what I have already given. Possibly I might have already lost the smokers half way through and they’re not even reading this bit, but if I have ask yourself, did the truly want to quit smoking in the first place? Those that desire it will still be reading and for those that wish too, get in touch and we can talk about how to make you a non-smoker for the rest of your life and quit for the very last time!