Just starting day 1 cold turkey.. Any tips to help me?

Hey everyone, I have FINALLY decided to stop smoking. I have tried to stop before using NRT but I couldn't stop.

I have been getting headaches after smoking and have realised its time to stop. I've been smoking for 10 years and smoke around 20 a day.

I'm gonna try and do it cold turkey, I know I'm in for a hard ride :(

Does anyone have any tips for when a craving hits?


Good luck everyone xxxx

17 Replies

  • Welcome to the forum Kerry, and oh boy - you may have just started a thread that will run for a considerable distance! Good stuff, and congratulations on your decision!

    Cold Turkey takes a huge amount of willpower, defiance and stamina to come through the early days unscathed, but as long as you have the pride in yourself, the belief that you are better than a plant and take each day one step at a time, then it can be achieved with aplomb. This is in the main a mental challenge - laugh at the craves, you are too good to let them impact your life in any way. Well done on the first step and good luck with the quit, plenty of support from this place as you're about to see! :D

    Now come on everyone that's tried the sipping water thing, the frozen grapes thing, lollipops and post-it notes, what was best for you?? :)

  • Congrats on making an excellent decision!!! For me sipping water helps most, but I also ha a fair few Creme eggs along the way too! Also herbal teas seem to work for me and sipping fizzy water. But most of all .... This forum and the amazing people on here who have been so supportive!! Post whenever you need to and somebody, somewhere will be there to give you a shoulder to cry on or a kick up the bum - whichever is needed!!!



  • Hiya Kerry, welcome to the forum and this is likely to be the best decision you'll ever make for your health so well done.

    I quit cold turkey and I can't add anything to the truly excellent advice given above by Hawkeye and Kat. It definitely helps to be stubborn though (which I am told I am :)) so hang in there and refuse to be beaten because you KNOW its worth it.

    Also, I know that I would have struggled with quitting an awful lot more than I did in those early days without this place and the wonderful people here. Personally, I read tonnes of old posts that gave me determination every time I read them. It has the added benefit of keeping your mind occupied as well.

    Anyway, best of luck to you and keep posting so we know how you're getting on.

    Molly x

  • Welcome Kerry, congratulations on deciding to quit and massive respect for going CT. You will probably find the first few days are just like a rollercoaster ride, one minute you will be euphoric, the next you'll feel rotten, be prepared and don't let any of this take you by surprise. I found the cravings came in almost like waves, deep breathing and distraction are the best weapons here, I found the Joke thread a brilliant diversion personally. As Kat says drinking water is vital, it helps with keeping the head clear and speeds up the flushing out process and somehow calms a craving. Every time that "feeling" comes over you, go for a walk, water the plants, scream, shout and punch pillows, even have a good cry if you want. Another tip is to time the cravings, and even though they feel all consuming and never ending they only actually last a few minutes, count them and you will notice them lessening. Good luck, if you feel totally overwhelmed, log on and someone here will be ready and waiting to help.

  • Welcome Kerry, stick to this forum like glue, is the best advice I can give, post as often as you can, it's the only aid I've used so far, it works.

    Be prepared to dig in and be honest with yourself.....a sneaky fag when you're out DOES matter, smoke or don't, no half measures.

    It may be easier than you think, however rough you feel, it doesn't last forever, and the rewards are amazing ;)

  • You can do it Kerry! We're always here to help. You'll find that this forum is a godsend it's helped me a lot. I'm into day 4 so pretty new to it myself, you're not alone :)

  • Here's one - try saying your favourite food to the letters of the alphabet. "A is for apples, B is for bon-bons...or bourbon biscuits, C is for chicken curry..." You probably won't make is to the letter Q and no-one should openly admit to liking quiche anyway :D

  • Here's one - try saying your favourite food to the letters of the alphabet. "A is for apples, B is for bon-bons...or bourbon biscuits, C is for chicken curry..." You probably won't make is to the letter Q and no-one should openly admit to liking quiche anyway :D

    Hmmm I love quiche..........DOH, I didn't mean it, honestly :D

  • Congratulations on your decision, read as much as you can to understand what is happening to you but apart from that there is no much I can add to the other posts. If in doubt ask, if down, share, if happy, share as well!! Good luck!

  • Yay!!

    You are stronger than I am for going CT as I couldn't!!

    I've found buttermints to be wonderful.....and the sips of water is good too. Green tea is relaxing and typing is great!!

    I also find just flexing my fingers is helpful, silly I know. Or random writing, only because it keeps your fingers busy too!

    Good Luck, everybody on this forum is wonderful :-)

  • Ct

    Kerry, congratulations on making perhaps the best decision of your life. CT is the best way to go in my opinion, but it is particularly difficult at the start. It will pay dividends very quickly, though, as you will free yourself of the demon quickly and then only have to fight the memories. For what it's worth, here are my observations.

    There can be no indecision; either you've quit or you haven't. If you are "trying" to quit, then you will probably be unsuccessful. So while it may feel like you are still a smoker trying to quit, begin to think of yourself as a non-smoker right now.

    Okay, so you're a non-smoker. This may sound stupid, but non-smokers simply do not smoke! So when you are faced with those inevitable craves that keep coming back day after day, week after week, it's as simple as saying to yourself, "I'm a non-smoker and non-smokers don't smoke." It's not optional. I think so many of us look at smoking as an option that we've chosen not to take, but an option nonetheless. For me, the key to a successful quit (and I've done it CT twice for 3 years and 5 years) is to adopt the mantra that smoking simply is not an option. Everything else is on the table, including eating for the UK, but not smoking. That will suck for a while, but it's the way it has to be.

    The beautiful thing about this site is that it shows us the wide variety of ways people approach quitting. What works for one doesn't necessarily work for another. Personally, I feel like I have to become fairly militant about the process, so I view it as war. The stakes are literally life and death! There may be different strategies that win the war, but smoking another cigarette will never be a winning strategy no matter how much you want one. Read ahead in the forum. You'll see that it does get better, and before long, it's easy.

  • I completely agree with Third, I won't go into it too much, but here are a couple of pointers:

    1. Get ready to feel like crap for a while and accept it.

    2. Take smoking off the table when it comes to relief.

    3. Try not to think about it too much, it will only extend the cravings.

    Good luck on your journey!

  • Congrats to you Kerry, like others have said it's a very personal thing but things that helped me were copious amounts of orange squah (i'm not a fan of plain water, sorry) lots and lots of bike riding (excercise is wonderfull for warding off the craves the first few days) using this forum (helped much more than I thought it would) and more kit kats than I could shake a wobbly stick at!.

    The most important thing though with cold turkey is believing you can do it and that you are not denying yourself (this is much harder than it sounds!) but once you crack it you will feel amazing :D :D :D

    Good luck, you can do it

  • Welcome to your new life

    A wonderful decision! One tip is when you crave a cig look at your legs and try to decide which one you don't mind losing, because if you continue to smoke one day the doctor will decide for you and use this forum often you will find it very encouraging.

  • Hey hey! I think cold turkey is ****** HARD...BUT! then easier after say 5 days vs NRT. fast and hard vs slow and drawn out. I have tried all the NRT as well, im currently doing well (day 3) on using ecig and nicorette spray which i plan to stop if my head space is good on friday and go the rest cold turkey.

    I think mind set is the key. First 4 days are the horrible ones. Ive done those 4 days quite a few times now CT and i noticed a big difference between embracing it and hating it. Like others have said if you know what to expect that will take some of the edge off. Stay away from triggers if possible and keep busy. Cry if you need to, eat cake if you want to. anything goes that first week except having a fag lol

    good luck let us know how you get on xxxx

  • Well done on your decision to quit. I must say I admire anyone who can do cold turkey, Ive tried and just couldn't, wish I could but there you go.

    I cant offer any advice on how you do it but I do wish you all the luck in the world.

    Lillie xxx

  • I done it cold turkey and now find the days going so quick. Yes now and then I think cig then it quickly passes. Everyone is diff but there are a lot of common factors we all seem to get ! This forum is best NRT I need and has got me through tough times. Hardest times I read a lot about smoking effects on the body and all smoking related diseases. Knowledge is power :) that helped me to think I can never smoke again. :)

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