What if Quitting Didn’t Work? 5 Things to Do

by Dr Antonio Howell, MD

in quit smoking

Dr. Howell

Smoking is a habit that takes months, even years to build. So don’t be surprised if you experience small setbacks. That is very normal. What is important is that you give strong efforts to overcome a relapse and get back to your goal of quitting smoking for good.No matter how hard it may seem, you should never stop trying to eliminate cigarettes from your life. Below are simple ways to overcome a relapse and hit your goal the next time you try to quit smoking again.

 1. Failing once or twice does not mean you won’t be able to quit for good.

As mentioned, relapse is normal. Just because you slip doesn’t mean you can never remove cigarettes from your life ever again. Studies show that it takes four attempts for an average smoker to bust their tobacco use. The more you get anxious of it, the more you make it hard for yourself to quit. So don’t worry if you fail for several times. It doesn’t mean you can’t quit for good.

 2. Never let a slip get you back to your old smoking habits.



Throw away the rest of your cigarettes. One is enough. You have to be more determined in your quest for a smoke-free life. It is important that you get back on track as soon as you can.

 3. Remember your reasons for quitting.

Whenever you feel the urge to light up, think of the reasons why you want to quit for good. Is it your health? Is it your family? Is it the fact that you are wasting money buying those expensive packs of toxins?

 4. Know what triggered you to smoke.

Maybe you’ve been through a very stressful situation. And to combat the anxiety, you think of lighting up. Or, you’ve been in a place where a lot of people smoke. Seeing them light those cigarettes encourages you to smoke too.

 5. Find alternative ways to combat your triggers.

If you smoke when you are stressed, try to find other ways to make yourself feel comfortable and relaxed. Maybe you can just watch TV, read a book, lie down on your bed and do nothing, meditate, or listen to some cool tracks. If you are fond of going to rest bars where smoking is allowed, find another place where you won’t even smell the foul smell of tobacco. Also, avoid going out with smoking peers.

 6. Learn from your experience.

It’s not enough that you accept the fact that you slipped. You should take time assessing the reasons why you did and devise strategies to avoid them. Know what has been most helpful and what was not. Decide whether to change or retain the smoking cessation method you’re using.


 7. Seek professional help.

For some smokers, quitting can be easy. But for others, it isn’t. If you encounter problems trying to quit, it is always advisable to seek professional help. Call your doctor today or see a smoking cessation specialist. They can certainly help.


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