Sep 26, 2018 | Updated: 04:34 PM EDT

Create A Plan to Quit Smoking to Increase Your Chances of Success

Jan 07, 2015 11:45 AM EST

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If you are like many tobacco users and smokers, you know you should quit.  But you just aren't sure how to do it.  Before you quit, create a plan to help you improve your chances.  Having a plan in place helps you cope with the physical and emotional issues that arise when you give up smoking and can greatly increase your chances of success.

There are many reasons to give up smoking including health, social stigma and the expense.  However, only you can decide when you are ready to quit.  If you are like many smokers, you spend a lot of time thinking about quitting the habit for good.  And if you find yourself thinking about it, go ahead and set a day to quit smoking and then plan for the day you quit.

Pick a specific day to quit within in the next month.  Don't choose your day too far in the future as you may not follow through with it.  However, don't make it too soon either, as you will not have enough time to properly plan your strategy before you put the last cigarette out for good.

Once you have the day chosen, it is time to prepare for its inevidable arrival.  Talk to your health care provider about the options available to you and decide if you want to go cold turkey or use medications, gum or patches to help you quit.  Tell all your friends and families of your plans so you have someone to help you through the difficult times and hold you accountable for your actions. 

Next get rid of everything in your home, you car and even your office, that could help you start smoking.   Throw out lighters, pack up the ash trays and get rid of any extra cigarettes you have around the house.  These can be reminders of smoking and tempt you to return to the habit.  Replace all of these supplies with new ones like sugarless gum, hard candy and even crunchy vegetables to help you survive the cravings you will experience.

If you have tried to quit before but failed, take the time to reflect on what happened to make you fail.  Remember what worked and didn't work for you and modify your plan accordingly.

Getting through the first day can be particular challenging for any smoker.  Resist the temptation to smoke even just one, modify your day so you are more active on your first day than you might normally be and avoid your friends or family members that still smoke.

Quitting smoking is not an easy task for any smoker.  Even if you do fail, it is important to never give up.  Examine why you failed and begin planning your next quit day immediately, so that you can beat the habit once and for all.

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