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Here are 25 triggers that make you feel like you want to smoke.  But…Here are 18 ways to avoid the triggers.  But first lets look at the acronym, HALT.

HALT = Hunger, Anger, Lonely, Tired

Hunger – It is amazing how our minds will tell us that everything’s wrong when all we really need to do is eat.

Anger – If we are angry, our minds tell us we need a cigarette to cope. Until your mind learns that it doesn’t need a cigarette to cope, try to avoid upsetting situations. Avoid certain people that may bother you. If you can’t get some time off, quit smoking on a long weekend.

Lonely – It is good to know some people who are going through the same thing. (Come to chat!!!!)

Tired – If we are tired, it is easy to become irritated and when we get irritated our minds will tell us that a cigarette will help. Our overall resistance becomes weak and it is easy to say, “Oh well, I guess I’ll have a smoke.”

Other common triggers: 

bullet After sex
bullet With alcoholic beverages
bullet Stressful work situations
bullet Social functions
bullet Boredom
bullet With coffee
bullet While driving
bullet End of a workday
bullet Enjoying a sense of accomplishment
bullet Facing a family crisis
bullet Finishing a meal
bullet Getting out of bed
bullet Playing cards
bullet Reading
bullet Friends who smoke
bullet Talking on the telephone
bullet Waiting for someone or something
bullet Watching TV
bullet Work breaks
bullet Out of habit – for no reason whatsoever

Make note of your triggers. When do you smoke? Is it associated with any of the above triggers? Maybe you have others. It is very important for you to prepare for any of your triggers. Know how you will handle them. Those triggers can quickly overwhelm the unprepared quitter, but a good plan of your own will carry you through all of them. As we head into the final days of 2007. Now is the time to set your sites on 2008 as the year that quit smoking. Smoke Away knows that you want to quit. We want you to quit. Best of all, whether you use our product or not, the bottom line is that YOU are making an effort to something about your addiction to nicotine. Below are ways to combat your triggers:

Substitution Suggestions:

1. Try substituting orange juice for your breakfast coffee for the first week.
2. Try taking your shower after breakfast or tidy up around the house.
3. Chew gum, have a mint, carrot or celery sticks, suck on long licorice sticks.
4. Keep hands busy with needlework or tools.
5. Take a short walk.
6. Write.
7. If you associate smoking and coffee, try switching to tea or another drink for a while.
8. Reward yourself with bubble baths or other ways of being good to yourself.
9. At times of personal crisis, use a support system. (Quit smoking now message board and chat room)
10. While watching TV, try keeping your hands busy, do pursed lip breathing exercises, chew on straws or coffee stirrers.
11. Avoid smokers for a while; be a non-smoking “actor. “
12. When on the telephone: doodle, switch hands on the receiver, drink water.
13. When driving, sing with the car radio.
14. In stressful situations, remove yourself from situation if possible.
15. Make a point of hanging out with non-smokers.
16. Let friends and family know emphatically that you QUIT.
17. Start a journal during your pre-quit. When stress comes along, try to write about it in your journal to get it out of your system.
18. Re-read your list of reasons why you quit

Nicotine dependence may mean you have these signs and symptoms:

  • You can’t stop smoking. You’ve made one or more serious, but unsuccessful, attempts to stop.
  • You experience strong withdrawal symptoms when you try to stop. Your attempts at stopping have caused physical signs and symptoms of addiction, such as craving for tobacco, anxiety, irritability, restlessness, difficulty concentrating, headache, drowsiness, stomach upset, even constipation or diarrhea.
  • You keep smoking despite health problems. Even though you’ve developed problems with your lungs or your heart, you haven’t stopped or can’t stop.
  • You give up social or recreational activities in order to smoke. You may stop going to certain restaurants or stop socializing with certain family members or friends because you can’t smoke in these situations.

Your degree of addiction depends in part on how much you smoke and how long you’ve smoked. But since we are in the business of helping people stop smoking, you have hope. With the new year fast approaching, wouldn’t it make sense to try something or some other method to enlist in your efforts to finally quit smoking? What is it going to take for you to wake up and realize that you are killing yourself slowly? 

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