To quit smoking is a huge challenge….like seriously huge, but it’s something thousands of people do everyday and so can you!
13 March is #NoSmokingDay so why not kick-start the healthy habit today? The aim of this day is to make people aware of the dangers of the addiction and to spotlight resources available to help people decide to try and quit.
We all know smoking is bad for you but did you know? Smoking is one the biggest causes of early death and illness in the UK. It also increases the risk of many cancers, it damages the heart and blood circulation and causes lung and respiratory disease. Cigarettes are also really expensive these days meaning smokers are spending significant amounts of money on them, that could’ve been spent elsewhere.
So here’s five tips from The Active Wellbeing Society to help you quit smoking….
Tip Number 1: Think Positive
To quit smoking is a huge challenge….like seriously huge! Instead of hoping to quit we suggest you believe and trust yourself. Create small targets by taking it day by day and make sure you take pride in your small victories by treating yourself. It’s also important to reflect on the benefits of quitting as well as managing situations where you are most likely to get cravings.
Homework for tip 1: Write down a list of reasons why you should quit, writing it down will help you and motivate you.
Tip Number 2: Get Moving
A review of scientific studies has proved exercise, even a 5-minute walk or stretch, cuts cravings and may help your brain produce anti-craving chemicals (source: NHS). You don’t have to be super fit and healthy to start a bit of exercise too, The Active Wellbeing Society have projects and programmes that cater for those new to exercise or those looking to take part in local activities. These activities range from walking football to Zumba or even a nine-week couch to 5k programme and much more.
Tip Number 3: Make some new friends by joining a club or community group
Being part of a support network or community group can help keep you busy and can help you quit smoking by reducing cravings. We recommend you get together with others who are trying to quit and form a support network. If none of your friends want to quit then you can join Facebook groups, watch YouTube videos about quitting and join forums where people are actively helping each other to quit smoking. You can also talk to others who have successfully quit smoking. Learn from them and tap into their experience of ditching the habit.
As well as quit smoking groups you can also join groups such as The Crowd. The Crowd is a network of local citizens who want to see positive changes in their community and where people tell The Active Wellbeing Society their ideas to make it a healthier and happier place to live.
Homework for tip 3: Go online and search for stop smoking groups, also check out social media and YouTube for further support. We also have community groups such as The Crowd where you can submit your ideas for local activities in your area.
Tip Number 4: Make a long term plan
If smoking has ingrained itself into your lifestyle, please don’t go Cold Turkey! Going cold turkey isn’t for everyone, whilst it would be good to quit totally this might be a challenge due to your chemical and psychological addiction to cigarettes.
NHS One You offer a free personal quit plan and also have an app where you can track your progress, see how much money you’re saving and get daily support wherever you are.
Tip Number 5: Get some stop smoking support
Did you know that you’re up to 4 times more likely to quit successfully with their expert help and advice? (Source: NHS). Free stop smoking services are available helping thousands of people to quit smoking every year.
If you’re confident and ready to quit, here’s your assignment:
- Talk to your doctor or pharmacist, visit the NHS Smokefree website. You can also call the NHS Smokefree helpline on 0300 123 1044, open Monday to Friday, 9am to 8pm and Saturday to Sunday, 11am to 4pm.
- Check out Stop smoking groups or one to one counselling, where a trained advisor can talk to you about your smoking habits to give you tailored advice and support
- Sign up to Email and text support programmes
- Join the Smokefree online community
For more information about stories, resources and activities in your area visit www.theaws.co.uk