Dealing With Smoking Relaps
smoke-free is more than just giving up cigarettes; it is a complete lifestyle
change. Here are some suggestions for making your new life smoke-free, as well
as strategies to help you get back on the wagon if you fall off.
Identify Your Triggers
relish the time they spend with their friends, like watching a game at the
sports bar or relaxing by the lake. But if that time means being around friends
who smoke, you may be encouraged to let your guard down and light up.
with an accountability partner or quit-smoking coach, identify situations in
which you may feel inclined to smoke. Then lay out a plan to deal with those
situations—whether it is stepping away for a minute, going over a rehearsed pep
talk in your mind, or texting a friend as a distraction.
take some time to identify your triggers and form a strategy. In the meantime,
you might slip up and relapse. If you do, learn from your misstep and come up
with a plan to avoid similar situations in the future.
common. That may not be the news you want to hear when you are determined to
quit and stay quit, but it is true. Many smokers relapse, and many people try
more than one time to stay quit. But here is the good news: You can learn from
past quitting experiences. And because you know what it is like to be on the
other side already, you are better prepared to tackle the ups and downs of
Think About the Benefits
In the short-term,
the benefits of not smoking can include having whiter teeth and better breath.
It can also mean having more spending money, and not having to step outside
to light up when you’re out with friends.
But the long-term
benefits are even better. They can include increased life expectancy, reduced
risk of disease and cancer, lower health-care costs, and better health for your
friends and family members.
mental list of these—or jot them down on a piece of paper—to remind yourself
why quitting is so important. If you slip up and start smoking again, let this
list serve as a reminder of why you made the decision to quit in the first
slipped up, and you’re smoking several times a day again. Quit again,
immediately. Don’t wait for tomorrow or for the start of a new week. The longer
you wait, the more time you give your body to build up its addiction to
now gets you started and working through the process again. The sooner you restart,
the sooner you can call yourself a former smoker.