Peer Review Status: Holden Comprehensive Cancer Center, Cancer Information Service
First Published: November 2000
Last Revised: May 2003
Being well prepared before you quit smoking is crucial to your
success. Many times people feel they have to jump into quitting,
thinking they have to sink or swim. It does not have to be like that.
By preparing for the "Quit Day," the negative aspects of quitting can
- Decide on a method of quitting, such as cold turkey, nicotine
replacement therapy, oral medication, support group/system.
- Set a quit date and tell your friends and relatives you will
be quitting on that date. Their support can be of help. Make the
quit day a special date like a birthday, New Years or Great
- Start to limit your cigarette consumption by smoking only
outdoors or in one room. Try to make the smoking experience
unpleasant, difficult or inconvenient.
- Throw away all smoking paraphernalia (lighters, ashtrays).
- On Quit Day, find an acceptable mouth toy (toothpick, gum,
swizzle stick) and use it.
- Remind yourself the urge to have a cigarette will go away
whether you have a cigarette or not.
- Think of quitting cigarettes as one day at a time. Think of quitting as freedom from a strong
- If you slip and smoke, do not be discouraged. Many former
smokers tried to stop several times before they finally succeeded.
- Reward yourself for not smoking by using the money you save on
cigarettes to purchase something you have wanted to buy.