Replace cigarettes with something else

You’ve trained your brain and body to depend on cigarettes in order to feel good.  It’s therefore important to do things you enjoy, so as to break your cigarette-related habits.  Obviously, as far as possible you’ll need to avoid the activities and even the people you associate in your mind with cigarettes, until you’ve been deprogrammed.

  • Move!  Replace cigarettes by sweat-inducing physical activities that you enjoy or would like to try (e.g. fast walking, fitness training, in-line skating, hockey, swimming, basketball, badminton, soccer, cycling, volleyball, climbing, dancing, boxing, karate, jogging, etc.).
  • Have fun!  Look around for other activities that you enjoy and that will allow you to laugh – for example, improvisation, acting, movies, reading, singing, music, etc.
  • Keep your hands busy!  Keep your hands busy with something else – for example, an elastic band, a paper clip or a pencil.  If you’re used to smoking while talking on the telephone, hold the receiver in the hand you would normally use to smoke.  Get involved in DIY, draw something, take up photography, play a musical instrument, work on a computer, pet your dog, play with an anti-stress ball, etc.
  • Keep your mouth busy!  If you feel you need something in your mouth, chew gum, a cinnamon stick or a straw, brush your teeth several times a day (toothpaste makes cigarettes taste bad), eat carrot or celery sticks or other fresh foods, drink a lot of water, etc.
  • Tip kit!  Make a NS (non-smoking) kit from a selection of the items listed above, and keep it close by at all times.
  • Positive thinking!  If you’re capable of finding a pretext to smoke, you should also be capable of finding an excuse not to smoke.  It’s a matter of positive thinking.
  • Support person!  Have someone you can talk to, both when things are going well and when they’re not.
  • Relax!  Sleep a lot, stretch out, breathe deeply or yawn, decorate your environment and learn some relaxation techniques.
  • Reward yourself!  Reward yourself regularly with the money you save by not buying cigarettes.  Suggestion: open a separate bank account for a vacation, a boat, a motorcycle or a dream you’d like to turn into reality