In a previous article we introduced many of the major quit-smoking methods that are currently available. This time we write about the key or decisive factor of your success – your motivation: how to keep it and not to slack off.
Let’s suppose you have been smoking for many years. You lit your first cigarette when you were a teen and continued with this habit without any obvious health problems until now. But, recently, you somehow sense that something is wrong with your health. Or, you may be forced to stop smoking because your family or employer requires you to do so. You logically understand it is about time to quit, but you need that final push – and with tens or maybe even hundreds of quit smoking products and methods out there, this may be rather confusing. Maybe you have already tried several of them, or you even participated in any of those quit-smoking programs run by a local support group, or you are a current patient in a clinic specializing in smoking cessation. In any case, we hope this piece of info will be of any use to you and it will help you to find your way to the goal: kicking your smoking habit for good.
Winning the battle against nicotine is not easy – it is a powerful enemy and you may be not strong enough to fight with it alone.
The challenge of stopping
There are several reasons why stopping smoking is that difficult.
- Nicotine is a highly addictive substance and more than half of the regular smokers experience serious withdrawal symptoms, when they’re trying to quit.
- It may be difficult for you to imagine your life without cigarettes.
- You may be convinced that it should be possible to quit without any assistance.
- You have tried to quit several times, but because you have failed, you have given up.
- You probably don’t realize all the risks involved in smoking or you are not willing to accept them.
- You are not able to effectively control your negative emotions.
- You may have a wrong image that you can quit any time you want, so you are not trying to address the issue.
In order to become a successful quitter, it is important to understand your stage of motivation.(1)
When we break down how smokers make the decision and effort to quit, we find 6 common stages of the process.
1. Pre-intentional stage
When we break down how smokers make the decision and effort to quit, we find 6 common stages of the process
In this stage, the possibility of quitting may have passed your mind from time to time, but you are not yet seriously considering doing it. What you need: You should understand that stopping smoking has many health benefits and you need both efficient help and support. It is also crucial to understand to what extent you are addict to nicotine and tobacco
2. Intentional stage
You may have an ambivalent attitude towards quitting. You hesitate about whether you should quit or not, and you may make a lot of excuses, such as why you should postpone your attempt to quit (“I’ll do it tomorrow” is a popular one).
What you need: You need support for your attempt to quit smoking. This comes in many forms, such as family/friend support, or finding mutual support from fellow quitters in a quit group. Start looking for local support groups, or visit www.smokefree.gov for additional advice.
3. Stage of preparation
You’ve set your mind to doing it. You are ready to quit.
What you need: As mentioned above, you need support for your attempt to quit smoking. Tell your friends and family that you will be quitting soon, and that you need their support and encouragement. Remember that quitting isn’t something you must do alone.
You are actually trying to quit smoking.
What you need: You need to follow a fixed plan for quitting and get assistance in case there are some signs you may relapse.
5. Sustaining abstinence
What you need: In this stage, you simply need to stay away from cigarettes – and from situations where people smoke. It will take some time to become an ex-smoker and you should first of all think of all the positive health benefits you gained after you stopped smoking.
You shouldn’t take it as a tragedy, because relapsing is very common when people try to quit for good. This doesn’t mean that you are not standing again on the start line. You can take it as a challenge and apply this experience when trying to quit in the future.
(1) Source: Guidelines for the post-graduate students of medicine – International Primary Care Respiratory Group
Quitting doesn’t have to be difficult
There is no such a thing as a uniform pattern or formula, but understanding your habits and weak points can significantly increase your chance for success. For some, stopping the use of cigarettes can be the biggest hurdle.
This can become easier for you with Rien Pipe, the original Japanese tobacco withdrawal method that lets smokers keep smoking during the quit process. Rien Pipe micro-hole filters reduce the amount of nicotine you inhale in your cigarettes, by an additional 3% each day, until you get to the level when your body is free of its nicotine addiction.
These attachments contain no nicotine; they have no cartridge, unlike e-cigarettes; and the amount of nicotine is reduced by diluting the inhaled tobacco smoke with air.
Sound too simple to be true? Sometimes the best solutions can be the easiest ones.