Psychological Self-Help

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Many examples of self-help methods for quitting smoking are given
instructions for each method are there or in chapter 11. I'll give a brief
summary (see the above Web sites or books) of stop smoking
suggestions: Try to select a "quit day" when you are not under stress.
Pick a specific day to stop and tell your friends, co-workers, and
family. Throw away (not just put away) all cigarettes, ashtrays,
lighters, etc. When the urge hits you, do something else, e.g. take a
deep breath, relax, and wait it out, chew some gum, pop in a lifesaver
or a carrot, meditate or exercise for 5 minutes, drink water or tea,
take a walk, call someone, get to work, etc. The urge will go away.
Avoid environments associated with smoking as much as possible,
don't sit where you habitually smoked, eat in a different place and
don't linger after eating if that is your usual time for a smoke, don't
have coffee in the morning or beer in the evening if smoking has been
strongly associated with these activities, change your work
environment if you have smoked there, avoid your smoking friends for
a few weeks or ask them not to smoke. Avoid coffee, alcohol, and
other drugs. Start an exercise program at the same time--women in
an exercise group as well as a smoking cessation program were twice
as successful and gained less weight. Record and reward your
Some people have found this method to be effective: Get very
relaxed and think of one of the best days of your life, a day filled with
good feelings. Now think of a small object, like a ring or a leaf, (small
enough to hold between your fingers and your thumb) that would
represent that day and those positive feelings. Then imagine holding
that object between your fingers and your thumb, gently squeeze the
object and feel the happy memories flow throughout your body. Tell
yourself that anytime you imagine squeezing the object between your
fingers and thumb, you will experience those wonderful feelings. So,
whenever you have an urge to have a cigarette, put your thumb and
fingers together and imagine squeezing the object, then you will relax,
feel good, and forget about having a cigarette. 
Study your tempting situations, your urges, and your self-control
methods so you can avoid those situations and handle the urges. Close
calls--temptations and lapses--are fairly common. Don't think that
resisting the urge gets easier and easier after quitting. The urges may
decline in strength and certainly the physiological need for nicotine
diminishes in several days but your confidence that you have beaten
the habit increases! That can be a serious problem: you lower your
guard. Ironically, it is the high self-esteem quitter who is most likely to
fail! The I'm-indestructible-person discounts the risks of smoking and,
thus, their motivation to resist the urges and quit is lower... and they
relapse (Gibbons, Eggleston & Benthin, 1997). Lapses often occur after
3 or 4 weeks of success, so be super careful during that time. Never
persuade yourself--don't even think it--that just one cigarette would
be okay since you are so stressed out some evening. One puff is
dangerous. One lapse often leads quickly to total relapse back to
square one. But a slip doesn't have to result in a total loss of control
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