A week ago today we had the pleasure of announcing that two people from the ShopRite stores were quitting smoking this month. I would like to take this moment to again encourage them on their endeavors and say this. It takes 30 days to form a habit and it takes 30 days to break one. It is not easy to denounce a physical addiction. It requires a great amount of strength. We are all given this strength, though so do not be discouraged. It is there, somewhere inside of you. It is simply a matter of utilizing it. I shouldn’t use the word simply, because I know that this is not a simple task. I want you to know how much respect I have for the decision you’ve made. Throughout these 30 days you may have experienced and most likely still will experience cravings, some stronger than others. When you crave a cigarette there are a few tricks that can really help you fight the urge. Take a look at these tips and try them. They may not all work for you personally, but they have all worked for people in the past and at least one should be helpful.
- Chug water. Take a bottle or glass of cold water and drink the whole thing quickly. It sounds strange, but it really can help. Our body almost always craves water. Satisfying one of your body’s cravings with something beneficial really can help distract you from your nicotine withdrawals.
- Vitamin C. Don’t take it. Eat it. Foods high in vitamin C tend to taste particularly bad with cigarettes. Oranges and strawberries are great things to snack on when you’re having a craving. Plus peeling an orange and eating it segment by segment will give you something to do with your hands.
- Have a little caffeine. If you don’t completely associate the taste of coffee with cigarettes have a small cup of coffee. If you do, try green tea. Cigarettes boost your metabolism and give you a slight burst of energy that a tiny bit of caffeine can take the place of. This tip is especially helpful if you’re feeling cranky or sluggish.
- Climb the stairs! And then keep at it. Running out of breath can help you get through strong cravings. Inhaling any type of smoke depletes our bodies oxygen levels for hours. Running up and down stairs can’t do that (thankfully) but being breathless can help trick your body into that old familiar feeling long enough to alleviate that craving.
I know this is hard and I’m so proud of those of you who are trying this. I have faith that you will all succeed. Remember your motivation. Whether it’s your family or your health or even the fact that it’s too expensive a habit to have, keep these things in the forefront of your mind. Remember you’re not alone and that people have done this before you. And remember the phrase, “This too shall pass.” Like anything painful or difficult in life, even the memory of the frustration you may be feeling will fade with time and all that will remain is the knowledge that you accomplished this amazing thing. You have the strength! You are a champion! You can do this.