Staying Quit (Maintenance)
Staying quit is the final, and most important, stage of the process. Many of the same methods can be used to stay quit as were used to help get through withdrawal. Smokers should think ahead to those times when they may feel the urge to smoke and plan on how they will use alternatives and activities to deal with it.
Here are some things smokers can do if they feel tempted to start smoking again:
- Wait. Cravings are natural and they will pass. Don’t think about not being able to smoke for the rest your life, think about not smoking for the next 10 minutes.
- Remember the reasons for wanting to quit. You only have to go through this once and then you’ll be a non-smoker for the rest of your life.
- Seek support. Call someone. Tell them you are thinking about smoking and ask them to help you through it. Talk to friends who have successfully quit or friends quitting with you.
- Replace the craving with something healthy. Drink water, make yourself a snack, take a walk, exercise, see a movie. Do something to pass the time.
- Reduce stress. Is something happening in your life that is causing stress? Try to let it go, talk to a counselor, take a shower, go work out, schedule a massage…do whatever it takes to de-stress!
Be smoke-free! Sign-up for the email listserv today or call Health Promotion, Programs, and Education (an office within Health Services) at 501-569-8302 for more information.