Quitting Smoking: Ex-Smokers of OzBargain, How Did You Do It?

I've been smoking regularly since the middle of November last year when I ended up in rehab. Before that, I barely smoked a pack every three months, and I would only smoke when stressed or at parties. My ciggies always went stale because I could never finish them within a reasonable timeframe. In rehab I punched a pack of darts a day, and when I left I dropped to about half a pack a day. At the beginning of this year I managed to quit for eight days, and there have been a few subsequent attempts (the most recent being four days ago), but I cannot seem to last more than four days. At 3am I caved in to my cravings, drove out to 7-Eleven and bought a pack of overpriced Dunhills and proceeded to smoke two. I felt terrible afterwards, and made another searching and fearless moral inventory of myself. I am powerless over tobacco, just like I am with alcohol. But I still genuinely enjoy the taste of good cigarettes, and I think that is my problem.

I smoked Benson & Hedges and Dunhills exclusively and cost hasn't been a great barrier for me. I've identified some personal reasons for quitting (for two kids that I love and love me back (not my kids, I don't have children yet!), for my own health, for sport, etc) but they just don't seem to be good enough to stop me from acting on my cravings. This time though, I feel ready to give them up for good.

How did you guys do it? Can you suggest anything that may help me?

Edit: I clarified in my edit that the two kids aren't mine. They are the kids of a close friend who is also in recovery. I do love them like my own kids though.

Comments

  • I would suggest seeing your GP

  • My life long smoking grandfather quit cold turkey by making a decision and sticking to it. No patches, chewing gums, self help books, hypnosis, etc. No relapses.

    Unfortunately the day he made the decision was also the day he was diagnosed with lung cancer. I didn't get to meet him.

  • Voluntarily.

  • +1

    I quit using Champix
    I started smoking when I was 14 and quit when I was 33 so I hope it was early enough to repair the damage that would be done.
    I gave it some thought the few weeks prior so that when i went to the docs I was well and truly ready.
    I started the tablets and had my last one on day 13. I dragged the 4 week course over 5 five weeks and haven't had a ciggie since.
    It's been 6 1/2 years

  • +2

    Any smokers with kids don't need to look for motivation to quit.. (My 2 cents)

  • "Champix" worked for me ;) I smoked for about 18 years..

  • +1

    Cold turkey - I recommend becoming somewhat of a hermit for a while,

    avoid
    -going out at night / parties
    -over eating
    -walking on routes you'd usually smoke

    Try
    -staying in places that you don't smoke (eg indoors for me)
    -remember smoking when you've been sick or the stale one that you didn't enjoy

    Worked for me but at the same time I think one day a switch just flicked in my head and although I still get cravings, there's something in my head now that just reminds me I don't actually want to smoke

  • +6

    Smoked for approx. 20 years. Up to 25 a day.
    Tried to give a few times, cold turkey, patches.
    Never worked (I know now) it was because I never really wanted to give up.
    I thought I should give up. I knew it was better to give up,
    my Doc told me I should give up, but, deep down, did I really really want to give up? Nup
    When I finally woke up and decided I actually REALLY REALLY wanted to give up,
    I bought a box of patches, used full patches for about 5 days to help me
    with the physical withdrawal symptoms, couldn't stand the taste of the nicotine
    coming through my saliva, plus I wasn't sleeping the best,
    so I cut them in half and used for another few days and then just stopped.
    If you REALLY want to give up, you will.

    • This ^
      Try the step down approach
      Lot of people use this for eating habits and coming out of phobia
      Ps I don't have leg to stand on, tried once under peer pressure as a teenager - absolutely disgusted in myself , can't stand it ..

  • +1

    I smoked for 2 years, half a pack a day, I loved smoking, but there is no denying it is an addiction, this was the main reason I quit, my pride was being hurt, I don't like to feel like I'm not in control of my own damn self. So I quite cold turkey. The cravings do come on strong, and attitude got pretty bad for me, but end of the day it is up to your own determination to not break. For me it was "easy" to quit because I asked myself "Are you so weak that you let yourself be ruled by these pointless smokes that are killing you to boot?". I answered "No", and that was that. If you have pride and self respect you will find it easy to quit, well I did anyway, it was still an extremely unpleasant experience, but it wasn't "difficult" for me, my pride rivals the best of men let alone a silly little pack of smokes, that's how you should think.

  • +1

    I smoked for 27 years. Gave up with patches, which I only used for a week. But then also didn't drink for a few months, knowing I'd light one up after a few. That was almost 7 years ago. Don't have any desire or cravings. TIP: Don't use the strongest patches while sleeping - they can cause the craziest and scariest dreams you'll ever have!

  • +2

    The ease or hardship of quitting is different for everyone. It relies basically on your will power and a motivating factor for you to quit.

    Will Power:
    You can train your will power to take it to a level where you can actually restrain yourself from smoking. This can be done by:
    - try to quit for as long as you can. if you start smoking again, then quit again. Each time try to extend this no-smoking period as long as you can. It can be days, weeks or months.
    - using quitting products to help you control your desire for smoking
    - put a toothpick, pencil or a pen in your mouth just to nullify your habit of having a cigarette in your mouth

    Motivation:
    Motivating factor normally remains the same throughout. It can be the cost of cigarettes, your family, your health or any other thing. This is the starting point. Therefore, your motivating factor has be a real motivator for you to keep you reminding of quitting all the time. It is up to you to decide what motivates you to quit.

    Other factors:
    - stay away from people who smoke. If you do meet them, try to be away from them at times when they are smoking.
    - download some app on your phone that counts days from any date that you give it. Every time you quit, put in that date in, and with every passing day it'll show your progress to help you track it and motivate you.

    About myself:
    I smoked for like 9 years one pack of 20s a day, same as you either Dunhil, B&H or 555. Then tried quitting like a 100 times. Every time I used to quit only to start again after some days or weeks. That slowly made me used to of staying away from cigarettes and developed my will power. People used to make fun of me that he quits only to start again. That only motivated me more to prove them wrong. This went on for like 2 years at-least. And at last in 2011 when I quit, never started again. So if I can do it, I believe you are no less than me, you can do it as well. You just need to be clear in your mind that you have to quit and you would only stop trying once you do actually quit it.

    • +1

      Thanks man. I'm trying again (starting today) and will try exercise some will power.

  • +1

    I quit smoking cold turkey, no patches, no medication, nothing. Prior to quitting I smoked Marlboro Reds or JPS. My decision to avoid patches was due to feedback from some friends who had tried it. Surprisingly, I quit, haven't gone back. I don't feel I was addicted, I merely quit due to the cost of it.

    • +3

      I've absolutely known people who have done this, but they don't big-note about it, they just had their own personal epiphany one day & stopped, never looking back.

  • +1

    Champix helped me quit smoking on second attempt over three years ago. It has its side effects so read about it and ask your GP. IMO don't attemp Champix unless you are really motivated to quit but unable to do so and attempted other options such as patches etc prior.

  • +7

    After 10+ years of smoking, I met my future wife. She was not a smoker and never asked me to stop. I decided it's time (after so many other times) to give smoking up. For her sake. For my sake. In respect for her.

    At 12AM midnight 2008 I've put down my cigarette and never relapsed again. Yes, no pills, no patches (there were no patches then) but a lot of struggle. Although I can't stand the smell of cigarette smoke now, I still crave for one from time to time. The addiction is forever, I made peace with that.

    • +1

      ^this

      So weird to crave one and hate the smell but so true - I have this too

  • +3

    I quit cause I'm border line lung cancer. Was motive enough for me. Still crave all day 1 year later.

    • +1

      Every former smoker I know still craves them everyday.

      Addicts to anything actually.

      I lived with a girl who was bulimic and she said still today (5 years after recovery) she has cravings to do it after every meal.

  • +4

    I quit over 6 years ago, cold turkey.

    In my opinion you can only quit if you really actually want to quit.

    If, and when, you actually want to quit, you will have the "will power" to do it.

    So what you need is the "will power"

    IMO patches, gum, etc, just keeps you addicted.

  • +3

    I also quit from near pack a day cold turkey after 10 years. Now been nearly 15 years.

    Really - look at the thread here most people who quit - quit cold turkey. Its tough (particularly the first 2 weeks) - but after 3 weeks it gets pretty easy and after 1 month you will never want a smoke again.

    If needs be - take a holdiday / camping where you cant buy cigarettes. Give yourself something to do when the cravings real bad - e.g have a cup of tea. Don't use nicotene replacement. Its not really quitting.

    Dare I say most quit "products" are prolly owned by big tobacco.

    • Along the lines of what you are saying Tobacco companies haved moved into buying vaping companies

  • Easy - Dont Smoke or Buy Smokes
    If i said your family would die if you smoked again you never would.
    Its in your mind.

  • The problem with 'willpower' alone is that if you have setbacks you see yourself as a failure rather than a setback. The QUIT folks have coaching to stop smoking and you can keep a diary to see your triggers. They also say the most effective way to quit is coaching plus nicotine replacement or coaching plus medication. There's a quit website to explore. Congratulations on starting your journey.

  • It may sound weird and not everyone will get it but I quit smoking, drinking and meat because they cause hindrance in knowing the truth (Spiritually).
    I always wanted to know the answer to our existence (Who we are and, where we come from, what our actual purpose.) I am determined to it and will do anything to findout. (Quitting these things is beneficial and has turned out to be beneficial in all regards)

    It started from Youtube, Science, Planets and Aliens and changed to a lot of readings and eventually perception changing about things and is leading to a good foundation of happiness.

    • Yes, you sound weird, but each to their own. I know a person who got so caught up in chasing the nether world that they stopped living in this one, mentally at least.

      Enjoy the here and now and be kind to those around you. If there is a greater purpose you will find it when you pass on. If there is no greater purpose, you won't know. Simple, perfect. You're welcome.

      • +1

        Thanks for the comment Daabido. BTW i am enjoying the here and now and at the same time seeking as well :).

  • Thank you for this thread and for people's comments.
    I am battling my own addiction (not tobacco) and I want to try all these tips.

    Thanks OZB! Subscribed.

  • How much does your smoking addiction cost people per year?

    • +2

      Even an average smoker of 10-15 day can spend close to $100 per week these days

      I bought a pack for a mate recently and was like $25 for a pack of 20 cigs!

      Its goes up 1-2$ each year over past 5 years, and will continue to do so

      Its just not worth the money, let alone your health

      • I thought they were referring to the cost on society - like hospital stays etc.

        • +2

          Looks like i misread, i think you are right

          Truth is a lifelong smoker probably covers their own costs these days with the ever increasing taxes on tobacco

        • @pointless comment: Nah I meant from person view haha

          wow $100 a week, thats a fair amount of money come end of year.

    • Nothing yet, and hopefully after this quit attempt I'll stay off the smokes so I won't cost the taxpayer in smoking related diseases. It did cost my parents $200 to get an electrician in to install a light under the gazebo in my backyard, and $6 for two ashtrays.

      • How much you reckon you spent since you started?

        What does your username mean as well?

        • +1

          I've spent around $1600 since rehab. Before that, no more than $200 in three years.

          The noun 'niggard' means "a mean or ungenerous person; a miser".

        • @niggard: Pretty cool name, I must say

  • +1

    I quit 5 years ago after been smoking for over 30 years. Before that I tried so many times to quit using patch or cold turkey which was no good.

    On my last try I used Chem pix prescribed by my GP which cost me ~$30, but I think other things that make me want to quit was the fact that my old brother (smoking as long as me) just had a stroke, and I want to run Marathon (Which I did it in 2013).

    Now I hate the smells of it but no craving at all..

  • +1

    I quit smoking 6-7 years ago , i tried the tablets " which i think made me want to smoke more lol " , ive read many different ways to help quit smoking so im guessing what works for one might not work for another , so keep trying different methods and hopefully you will find one that works for you.

    As for me cold turkey worked for me i planned ahead and bought pretzel sticks to A:give me that hand to mouth feeling of smoking and B:they are salty which is handy as i smoke alot while im drinking and the pretzels make my mouth dry like smoking" yes another addiction i have " and C:after going through withdrawals for 3-4 days i wasnt going to waste that by smoking again. oooh and one more thing as i mentioned i drink often so the day i decided to give up i did it while drinking , i new if i could do without a smoke whilst drinking i could give up for good.

    Good luck and keep trying as its such a waste of money and bad for your health.

  • I quit cigarette on March 2009 with the help of Nicabate CQ patch. I used 14mg patches for the first 2 weeks and 7mg for the 2 weeks after. If you are heavy smoker you should start with 21mg. It worked straight away and the need of cigarette was disappeard. I didn't smoke ever since till now. I told a friend about it and he only used Nicabate CQ patch for only a week then he didn't need it anymore. Good luck.

    • +1

      Thanks mate. I've been off the smokes for around 16 hours now, no cravings yet. I've got an inhalator, 2 and 4mg gum as well as the quickmist spray. This time it feels different; the last lot of ciggies tasted awful and I didn't get any pleasure from them. I want to quit for good. I don't want to go back to social smoking at all.

  • +1

    Vaping all the way brother. I never thought I could give up the smokes and even the thought scared me. Good vaping gear, good ejuice and nicotine are going to help. I pretty much switched straight over without any hassles. These days vaping can really give you that throat hit, this is at the end of the day what most smokers are looking for. I use 8MG nicotine ejuice, iStick Mod and Aspire clearomisers and coils. There are a lot of options but just get good gear to start with and try it out with an open mind. I have converted many friends and family and I don't feel people need to smoke 4000 chemicals any more. There is a way out brother, give good gear a shot… Should cost you under $200 easy.

  • +1

    Don't do this vaping rubbish. Long term effects are unknown and it looks stupid. And as someone who enjoys the taste of tobacco, I don't think you'll appreciate fruity flavours. If your serious about quitting just throw the pack and never look back because it is all in your head. Nicotine is nowhere near as addictive as people say it is. I think it is more likely you are addicted to the chemicals added to the cigarettes.

    • +1

      You're wrong on so many levels that I can't be bothered arguing with you.

    • -1

      Be informed:

      https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachm...

      I'd be happy to see counter scientific/medical evidence to the contrary as in-depth as this.

      • -1

        Spot on brother. I was laughing when the UK government came out with this. It's a big call to officially say e-cigs/vaping is "In a nutshell, best estimates show e-cigarettes are 95% less harmful to your health than normal cigarettes, and when supported by a smoking cessation service, help most smokers to quit tobacco altogether.

        That's not a bunch of hippies saying that… That's the government of the UK.

      • -1

        For some reason we are being down voted on the official UK government studies?!?!?! LOL

        • +1

          An update in the form of a very recent report from the Royal College of… PHYSICIANS!!! :

          https://www.rcplondon.ac.uk/projects/outputs/nicotine-withou...

          And here's an update in the form of my own mother's story:

          After 50 years of smoking, switched to vaping and has now reduced to zero nicotine in her e-liquid. Time taken was about six months starting from a 20 per day smoking habit. She says it's the easiest attempt ever made to give up the cigs, and there has been plenty of attempts over her lifetime. The vaping habit (now not a physical addiction) will now cost her about $100 to $150 per year (smoking cost her about this much per week), but she will probably drop even the vaping in due course.

          There are more than just "fruity" flavours available. There are all sorts of savoury flavours, beverage flavours, and even tobacco flavours.

          I have to agree with nuzby's post on one thing - I'm pretty sure there is a lot more addictive stuff added to cigarettes than just nicotine. The ingredients of a tobacco based cigarette are far less known and certain than those of e-liquid, as far as I can tell.

  • +2

    I gave up smoking 5 years ago due to my kids. Used to be a chain smoker. 1.5 pack/day
    It was not a smooth ride but i managed to stay away by using Nicotine replacement products.
    Started with Nicorette Mouth Spray (6months) than shifted on to Inhaler(1year) and than Lozenges and finally chewed Nicotine gum for about 1 year and just last week gave up everything. Trying to live a normal Nicotine/smoke free life.

  • Thanks for your stories about quitting. I know it's not going to be an easy road, but I'm doing it for Bella and Charlie, as well as myself.

  • Nicotine Replacement Therapy was the only way for me, first I started with the Nicorette Inhaler from the chemist, then I switched from the inhaler to the gum. Been on the gum for 3 years so now I gotta quit the gum LOL it's a lot better than smoking though!

  • +1

    Swap to cigars. You might smoke one a week and you don't inhale the smoke into your lungs. The health affects of even one cigar a day is negligible. Plus you will then realise how disgusting cigarettes are.

  • +1

    Smoke free for 21 years now. After a few failed attempts it was The Quit program which got me off the cancer sticks. They sent me a large envelope of sensible garb which I followed to the letter. Don't get me wrong it was hard. I believe it's as hard as giving up heroin. I found the smoke with coffee and the after a good meal smoke the hardest. Cold Turkey was the only way for me. I craved in certain situations for about 5 years. I spent 12 months coughing up gunk and gained weight as I could taste my food better. Go the whole hog and do the gym and high protein/low carb diet as well HAHA. Good Luck!!

  • +1

    I am not a smoker myself. I had a friend who smoked basically one every hour at work. Used to drink a lot. He did tell me though that only time he will quit both is if he is going to be a father. Well now his wife is pregnant and he has not smoked for nearly 4 months since they found out. He does work hard. Work 2 jobs. Works nearly 60-70 hours a week. One full time job and one part time. His job demands putting up with a lot of grumpy customers (hospitality). He get tensed and worked up easily.

    Well if a person like him just give up why can't others just do it. Its all about will power and stop making excuses.

    I hear people say "I know this person, that person who smoked the whole life and lived to be a 100". Well it's not about that. If you smoke you are just increasing your odds to get sick and die early. You are basically paying good money that you can spend with your family friends just to increase your odds to have an unhealthy life.

    And you who ever posted this, if you love those kids so much I don't see what's stopping you from just quitting….MAN UPPPPPPPPPP….everyone have issues in their lives. Everyone is under pressure, and not everyone smokes for these stupid things that life throw at you.

    • +5

      Day two of being smoke free!

      • Excellent! You CAN achieve this.

      • Keep it up… Be positive

      • +1

        Good work buddy….dont listen to those fools who think vaping is a good idea either

        • +1

          Whoever negged this comment after OP upvoted it Needs to take good look at themselves.

  • +2

    I smoked since I was 13 (gave into peer pressure in high school in Ireland where the legal age to smoke is 16 with no ID to prove you're 16 so as long as you looked it they sold you them) I was able to smoke about 5 a day then as I got older it was 10 a day then 15 then 20 was the most I reckon. I moved to Australia when I was 17 and the price was enough to put me off but being addicted I didn't, but went through a packet every 2 days.
    I continued smoking until the age of 23/24 when after 10 years of smoking my health was just awful I could barely walk down the street never mind participate in any sports. I really needed to quit but my partner was still a smoker, which always makes it hard, so I took champix and I went really well for 6 months no cigarettes, I even hated the smell of it. Then I relapsed went back on then back off then back on back off. I smoked everytime I went on holiday it was just a reaction holiday=become a smoker again. Everytime I went drinking aww sure they go hand in hand, I'll just have 1 or 2, ended up smoking a packet anytime I got drunk. I was one of those awful part time smokers living in an awful haze waiting for my next occasion until I got my fix. When finally I had a light bulb moment all the money I was wasting just to shorten my life, I'm still young I want children in the near future I didn't want to be a smoker at all anymore. So I went back on the champix took the course to the end, then tested the waters went drinking without having a single smoke, almost 6 months on and I haven't even thought about having one. The idea repulses me, I can still enjoy a drink without my head spinning and my lungs gasping for a smoke. It's a hard battle it truly is I wish you all the best in your journey and I would highly recommend champix :)

  • +1

    I found mine was pattern smoking, after the pregnancy started for my second boy, I changed some of my habits (for example, I used to walk to work, and have a smoke on the way - changed the way I walked to work, and didn't smoke that way). When I got down from about 10 a day to about 3 a day, I changed the smoking to chewing Nicorette gum instead, then swapped that to regular gum - the hardest one was stopping at home, as, after the baby was born, my wife started smoking (again) a few months later. Now I've been 3 months clean, I tried one about a year ago when we were on holidays, and it tasted disgusting.

    Good luck with your quest; it's worth the effort to quit.

    Cheers

    Richard

  • I smoked for 11 years, but one day changed my life. I don't want to go into details but the lesson what I learned my quitting was, how strong you are in making decision and acting on it.

    If you decide that you will quit smoking then better quit. Think about your child's health, your health. Just to motivate your self creat a small excel sheet how much money you will save each week, month and year. If you can't quite on one day, decrease the number of cigs. per day or per week and stop it one day.

    Best of luck and happy quitting.

    Cheers

  • The wayI do it, is I don't quit. I just choose at the moment not to smoke. I don't make a big ordeal of it. If I go out with friends or whatever then I might have one or not. I just make it a small thing that I can do if I want but I just can't be bothered most of the time. Its like a lot of addictions, if you deny yourself then you end up wanting it more then you do it and go overboard. So I just don't quit.

  • +1

    I inadvertently gave up smoking after receiving a course of Electro-convulsive therapy for severe depression. I suddenly realised that a wasn't a smoker, I also suddenly enjoyed the flavour of curry. Go figure!

    We'll OP, you did ask….

  • I was a pack a day smoker just about and I have quit now for 8 years now.

    Cold turkey, it's going to suck but its the best way of doing it. After 2 weeks you come out the other side. Do not give in. Do not social smoke.

    I had a pack of patches and when I was absolutely going to snap and grab a smoke I put half a patch on. It's the moment when you are going to snap that you need to do something anything else but have a smoke. Think I only did it twice.

  • Get some clove oil, everytime you think of smoking put some on the back of your hand and give it a lick. Helped me with the pyshchological side.
    Patches just made me crave nicotine

  • +1

    I quit before vaping came a thing :)

    I just kept trying about 10 times, til one day it just stuck. I didn't like the taste of the nicorrette products and patches didn't work for me.

    Sometimes for me it just takes multiple times for something to become a habit.
    Also now I'm 3 months without alcohol - Super Saving Mode!!

  • Smoking is one of the worst addiction for sure.

    I used to smoke a pack a day and the way it worked for me was SELF DETERMINATION!

    It is the key for the first two weeks

    • Divert yourself to something else (Using bubble gum etc)
    • Try to limit drinking alcohol for the first few weeks (Its the main culprit)

    If you have the determination for the first 4 weeks, the craving will fade away!

    One important thing - Never try to reduce the number of smokes a day to stop.
    Just STOP it one fine day and go with it.

    Good luck!

  • -1

    Honestly, its all about 'Respect', if you respect yourself, you wont smoke ..OR drink for that matter. There are much more important and valuable things in life then to wither away by consuming 'toxic' products. Life is so much more than this!

  • I used to smoke so much that my finger actually turned yellow. I have tried to quit a few times but unsuccessful. At the end I read the book call "the easy way to quit smoking" by Allen Carr. The book was so boring. It repeats the same thing over and over again. I'm not sure f I'm being brain washed or something, I just quit the book smoking completely after I read 3x pages. I know a couple of people quit smoking by reading this book too but none of them finish reading the book

  • Stopping buying them worked for me

  • Stopped suddenly and avoid meeting friends who smoke until you are confident that you have stopped smoking. You can talk to your friends and hope they can understand. Have tried many other ways in the past:
    Stopping with step-down approach. This never works for me. The temptation is there all the time. Also there is a research finding confirming that the success rate is low compared to stop suddenly.
    Stopping suddenly still meeting friends who smoke. Never work also.
    In summary, stop suddenly and avoid all temptations. You can concentrate on other things or activities.

  • Stopping suddenly, avoiding all your smoker friends until you're confident you can resist. Just don't meet them for drinks or else you might start back from Square one, personal experience here. Eventually you'll stop thinking about it and it will smell pretty bad to you, even if you decide to take one puff, it would taste disgusting to you. I've been going 1 year strong, but I think it was easier since I don't have much contact around smokers these days besides my neighbors. IMO it annoys me when they have a smoke and someone leaves the backdoor open, because i hate the smell now.
    Now I just feel too guilty to even be tempted to smoke after a year off it. I'm now saving about $1.5k/year from not smoking. :D

  • Just quit. Ram into your mind that smoking is the devil, and you won't go back. Life will suck for 2 weeks, and then it will get better. If possible, take time off work, and line up a lot of Netflix/other TV to watch. Replace one addiction with another.

    Same applies to sugar. I have gone through both.

  • I have just passed 3 months cold turkey. Been wanting to quit for ages and one day just thought I cant do it anymore. Buying a house and paying for a wedding this year has played a big factor, but mainly I want to make sure I grow old with my partner. Watching a family member pass away from cancer helped too.

    Anything you need to do to get through that first couple of weeks - do it. I still crave everyday, but now just don't want to go back.

    I've heard people say you are never not an addict, you just become a non-smoker.

    • +2

      The addiction stays with you for years (probably forever), but becomes much, much less. I don't crave or think about cigarettes at all in my day-to-day life.

  • +2

    I've met foreign backpackers that quit smoking when they arrived in Australia since they simply couldn't afford it.

    Many adults I know that quit did so after an extended lung infection.

    I'll tell you something that cheeses me off. Financially struggling parents that complain they can't feed their kids since they have no money left after cigarettes. Don't get me started on the ones that have no money left after ciggies, pokies and booze…or the fact the government facilitates these people in ruining their families. Sorry it hit a little close to home.

  • I smoked for 8 years. Quit using patches. I failed once but a few months later retried and quit for good it's been about 15 years since I last had a smoke. Good Luck.

  • I went cold turkey. My wife, when we were dating said how she never pictured herself with a smoker and that was enough for me to quit.
    It was hard but I also did it while I was on holidays felt like it made it easier, maybe 2 weeks is when I passed the cravings.

  • +1

    I was a filter-less smoker addicted to the big hit that carried me to the next hit which got me through the day.
    I stopped when I met a nice girl who liked to be with me and made me happy.
    Look for the causes of your unhappiness and make sure that you have dealt with them first.
    Quitting will then be inevitable.

    Best of luck.

  • I'm not a smoker, and i doubt i'd ever get into the habit, but i read all the comments on here anyway. What i'm really curious about is how people get into smoking in the first place? I'm not trying to pick a fight here, i am actually genuinely curious as to what made people pick up the first cigarette and get addicted to it? Is it similar to alcohol (i don't drink alcohol either)? It's like, all my life I've been exposed to ads and people everywhere telling me "smoking = bad" because it kills you, "it's not worth it" etc etc, so you could say i'm a sheep who just meekly followed what i was told. But how about all the smokers? Were you guys just curious/rebellious/coerced into it? Sorry if i offended anyone's feelings. I'm just annoyingly inquisitive but don't have the guts to ask someone straight in the face.

    • I think I was born with an addictive personality. I can't speak for others, but in my own experience I got addicted to alcohol right from the get go. If you go to any AA meetings around Sydney's North Shore, you might hear me speak hahah.

      I had my first drink when I was pretty young, and that sparked an obsession with alcohol. Healthy Harold told us kids that alcohol, drugs and cigarettes were bad, but here was a substance (alcohol) that didn't make me feel bad at all. When I turned 18 alcohol became freely available and I became a daily drinker pretty quickly, and I relied on alcohol to get me through the day. In my mind, there wasn't a reason to not drink; I drank firstly for the feeling, then as alcohol addiction took place, I drank to ward off the symptoms of withdrawal.

      With tobacco, I smoked my first cigarette when I was 18, but didn't really feel a need to smoke at all. I only smoked occasionally when I went out to parties, or had a reason to stay up late e.g. finishing off uni assignments, driving long distances, etc. I only started smoking regularly when I ended up in rehab, smoking about a pack a day because everyone else smoked. The first two days in rehab were lonely because I was under lockdown while I detoxed, and there were no fellow non-smokers. So I would say probably peer pressure and boredom drove me to smoke.

  • +1

    I was pack a day. Tried patches, lozenges, gum, Champix, etc… but in the end it was reading Allen Carr's book. It's all mental - soon as you realise that withdrawal symptoms are just that, and really they aren't any worse than a bad cold, you can get through it. First 2 weeks are tough and from there it get's much easier. I've been quit just over 5 years. Bizarrely I still have nightmare's where I've taken it up again, bit weird.

  • -1

    Try switching to Weed.

  • Cold turkey after 17 years. Quit becoz of my first child 4 years ago. Hate the smell of smoke but would cave in if I get my hands on a stick without getting caught. Recently I bought a pack of reds, twos a day and finished in less than two weeks. Hopefully it's a once off.

    Good luck!

  • Drop dead from a cardiac arrest in front of your kids
    Get defibrillated 5 times by the ambos
    Stay in a coma for 2 days
    Have the cardiologist threaten not to treat you in the future if you keep smoking
    Come out of hospital and finally admit that smoking is bad for you and quit
    Spend the rest of your life on multiple heart drugs and know you are on borrowed time

    At least that's the way my Dad quit.

  • My wife was a smoker for 10 years. She ending up doing Hypnosis and it worked! But the thing is, mentally you have to want to quit smoking for it to work.

  • I used to be about a 1/2 pack a day smoker but few years ago I quit. I remember there was a commercial on TV with this lady who was explaining to her kid that she had cancer, something about it got to me and from that day on, haven't touched a cigarette. Just went cold turkey

    It's funny that when you smoke, you don't realise how bad you smell… as soon as i stopped, i noticed that people that smoked stunk

  • +1

    btw when the craving starts to kick in, have a re-read on all the encouragement posts here.

    it helps! at lest for me as i was gettin ready to head out to Coles to sneak a pack of reds but decided to have another read at the wins on this thread ^_^

  • +1

    I was a smoker for 14 years, first in school then through army (it seemed all the fittest people were smokers…) after army I wanted to quit but my wife was a smoker as well and it was a struggle to stop as if either one of us wanted to stop, the other was not committed and there would miraculously be a packet within arms reach within the next day and you can't help yourself if its just there waiting for you.

    Finally made a decision to quit and did it cold turkey after a week of planning with the wife, we decided that when we had finished our last supply we would not buy any more.

    So like everyone else that has said, it's a mental thing and you just need to be committed and have some support. Been tempted a lot but have managed to just stay away and it gets easier. I kept thinking "Oh if I can go for 2 months without one then I'll treat myself" then when I had a craving I'd hold out for the deadline I made, but when 2 months came round I'd just say maybe I can go a bit more without? Now I just don't do it and think about having one if a friend is having one.

    I still love the casualness of having a ciggie at a party but you can't disregard the negative long term effects and I'm getting too old, that being said, the bad for your health smoking ads piss me off personally and never helped. You get over smoking when you want to get over it.

    • The last sentence is so true. My previous quit attempts didn't work because I didn't really want to stop. Something feels different this time.

  • +1

    I quit about 20 years ago using techniques I learnt on a course called 'Smokestoppers'. The course was run by a local psychologist and used a bunch of techniques. The two that I still remember are

    1) smoking mindfully. Really concentrate on the sensations as you smoke each cigarette. You'll be surprised at how bad they really taste.
    2) identify and evaluate the triggers. What caused you to want that cigarette and is that trigger a good enough reason to smoke? You'll find that you have less free will then you thought you did. Eg phone rings… smoke cigarette, finish dinner… smoke cigarette.

    There were others. Affirmations, relaxation techniques. Oh, an elastic band around your cigarette packet. It's a device that stops you from opening your cigarette packet on auto-pilot. As soon as you become aware that you are opening the packet you ask yourself if you really want a cigarette. Surprisingly the answer is often no. Drink lots of water, do a lot of walking…

    Anyway, I tapered then quit, took it up again, tapered then quit, took it up again. It stuck in the end. Don't think about them now. In the end I think that stopping is easier than managing it or substituting. It would be a lot easier now than it was back then. Fewer smokers, fewer places you can smoke. Anyway, you have my blessing. Go for it.

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