10 Tips to Quit Smoking for New Year

January 9, 2017

New Year, a time when many of us take a long hard look at our lives and the way we are living them. A time to make resolutions that will make us healthier or happier in the year ahead. One resolution remains among the top ten New Year’s resolutions every year is to stop smoking.

The good news is that deciding to stop smoking is the most important decision a smoker can make to improve your health. The bad news is, it is really tough quitting smoking and it, along with losing weight, is the most commonly broken New Year’s resolution.

So before you become a statistic for broken resolutions here are 10 tips to quit smoking.

  1. Plan properly

Don’t let fear and self-doubt stop you before you get started. Think about your quit attempt and plan properly before you stub out that last cigarette. A well thought out plan of action will ensure that you can do it and the rewards afterwards are well worth the effort it takes to quit smoking.

  1. Find a friend to support you

Having family and/or friends who are interested in your success is important. Chat to ex-smokers, join a stop smoking forum – there are many people out there that know exactly what you are going through. Learn from them.

  1. Drink water

Keeping well hydrated will make you feel better in general. Extra fluids will also help flush out any residual toxins in your system. Drinking a glass of water during cravings also helps distract you long enough for the craving to pass.

  1. Eat smart

Nicotine withdrawal can introduce a host of symptoms which throws your body into shock initially. Taking care of your body and giving it healthy foods will give it the fuel it needs to run properly and to minimise the discomforts associated with this phase. Watch out for empty calories that will leave you feeling tired due to an insulin spike and can also cause weight gain as your metabolic rate normalises. Keep healthy snacks within easy reach to support you.

  1. Get enough sleep

When you are tired your resistance is low. You will not have the energy to resist temptations, triggers and cravings will seem stronger. Try and get 8 hours of sleep every night and take a power nap during the day if you need it. If you have trouble sleeping when you first stop smoking, try taking a long walk a few hours before bedtime. The fresh air and exercise often help overcome that initial insomnia.

  1. Get moving

If you do not already have a daily exercise regimen now is the perfect time to start one. Choose something you enjoy doing and start off slowly. Aim for 30 minutes of exercise each day. Walking is suitable for most people and is a quick fix to curb the urge to smoke. Get out for a 15 minute walk whenever you feel a bit stressed and you’ll come back feeling refreshed and relaxed. The extra exercise will help minimise weight gain and the endorphins created during the exercise will give you a much needed feel-good boost.

  1. Avoid “stinking-thinking”

Quitting smoking is a gift, not a sacrifice. Don’t sabotage your quit smoking attempt by feeling sorry for yourself because you can’t smoke. You have chosen not to smoke. Your choice will free you of this killer of an addiction. So pay attention to your thinking processes and keep yourself positive.

  1. Let it go

Relax into your smoking cessation programme and embrace the cravings as they come. Don’t try and fight them, just let them run their course and then let them go. Think of them as signs that your body is healing itself because that is exactly what they are. If withdrawal is intense consider nicotine replacement therapy to take the edge off the symptoms.

  1. Patience

People don’t quit smoking in a day. Reward yourself when you achieve small goals. Slow and steady habit change might not be sexy, but it’s a lot more effective than the “I want it ALL and I want it NOW!” mentality. It takes time and practice to establish new healthy habits but each day you complete smoke-free is a day closer to the lasting freedom you are after.

  1. Invest in a good smoking cessation programme – it will pay dividends for years to come

If you are really serious about quitting smoking for good then invest in a good smoking cessation programme. Research shows that the most effective stop smoking programme is one that has a combination of support, stop smoking medication and behaviour change therapy such as GoSmokeFree.

Achieve your goal to stop smoking this New Year and take back your health and your life from the chains of addiction. Visit www.gosmokefree.co.za or email info@gosmokefree.co.za for more information about the best way to quit smoking.

GoSmokeFree stop smoking service is based on the proven combination of professional support, behavioural modification therapy and traditional nicotine replacement therapy such as medical nicotine gum or patches. The programme is available at leading pharmacies across South Africa. Click here to find one near you www.gosmokefree.co.za/find-a-pharmacy/ .

Triple your chance of successfully stopping smoking with the GoSmokeFree smoking cessation programme and achieve your goal to quit smoking for good.  

You are worth it!


This article contains opinions and facts and references to other information sources. You should always consult a registered healthcare professional for any personal advice.

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