How To Quit

1. Think about quitting

Talk to others about smoking. Observe how nonsmokers react to smokers. Observe negative aspects of smoking. Smoke in front of a mirror to see exactly what goes on when you smoke.

2. Seek more info about quitting.

Ask ex-smokers how they did it. Tell a friend you’re exploring healthier alternatives to smoking. When you feel an urge to smoke, wait a minute before lighting up; experience the urge fully and think of other ways to respond to it. Reward yourself for becoming more aware of your smoking patterns.

3. Modify your smoking risk

Start a smoking journal and record when you smoke more or less than usual. Try stress-reduction techniques. Adopt a healthful new activity that’s incompatible with smoking (swimming, dancing, etc.). Switch to a lower tar brand. Reward yourself for each risk modification.

4. Make the decision

Keep track of the number of cigarettes you smoke each day. Stop buying cartons; buy only one pack at a time. Identify your top cigarette triggers. Brush your teeth several times a day. List the reasons you want to quit. Switch brands every week, each brand being lower in tar than the last. Postpone every third cigarette. Ask family and friends for ways they can help you quit.

5. Set a definitive quitting date.