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Tips for quitting smoking

Quitting smoking is one of the hardest things I've ever done. I'd like to share some tips that I learned from Allan Car's book, "The Easy Way to Stop Smoking" and some helpful hints from my own personal experience.
One thing that really kept me going is that I counted every single day. "One day at a time" is a famous 12 step mantra but I really took it on as my own. Every day I went without a cigarette increased my pride in my achievement and reaffirmed my commitment to breaking the habit. Since making it a full day was such a big deal every time it made me that much more determined to not go back to smoking and have all my hard work be for nothing.

The most important thing I learned from Allan Carr's book was to give up ALL tobacco products and anything that I would smoke i.e. no pot. He explains that by using "the patch," an e-cigararrette, or nicorette you are simply prolonging your craving and your dissatisfaction. By going cold turkey (whether by stopping abruptly or cutting down) you are doing your body a favor and actually making the process easier. Rip that band-aide off!

Another piece of advice I would give is to brag about your achievement. Tell your friends! Post it on Facebook and share it on Twitter! Any positive reinforcement and support will strengthen your commitment. This way, if you return to smoking you will have to admit to all of your friends and family that you couldn't stick with it. Plus, it's great knowing how proud of you they are... and often they have some good advice to share.

Don't allow yourself to ever have one puff again. Being a "social smoker" would be nice. But that isn't you. If you make the excuse to smoke one cigarette at one party or on a particularly hard day at work, what is going to stop you when life throws more challenges your way?

My final piece of advice is to stop when you are coming down with a cold. This way, the nasty withdrawal symptoms that can be associated with quitting smoking will be muddled with the achy sick feeling of your cold. Plus, you are usually less inclined to smoke when you are sick anyway so this is a great time to start.

Good luck and be strong! Make each day count!

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