How do you tackle the psychological cravings? - No Smoking Day

No Smoking Day
4,017 members32,224 posts

How do you tackle the psychological cravings?


Hi All,

I'm on day 9 of Champix and smoke free since yesterday (after 16 years). I'm finding it way easier than any other method and am not having any tough physical cravings. I am however finding that my brain just keeps thinking ooh, but you're boiling the kettle/getting in the car/anything really, you should be having a cigarette.

I'm really keen to hear tips of how people are tackling their psychological 'trigger' craves? I work from home so I'm used to smoking whenever it pops into my head!!

Thanks fellows, we got this!!

19 Replies
NozmoValued Contributor

I wish I knew the answer to that one. I know exactly what you mean. With me it was getting home after work, cutting the grass, getting in from a run, cleaning out my rabbits....and many, many more. After doing any of these things the thought would just instantly pop into my head and it was hard to deal with. All I would say is make a list of all the situations that you associate with having a cigarette and prepare yourself for the craving to appear. The surprise ones are the hardest to deal with so I found out that if I was prepared for them they weren't so bad.

CocoaXChangeValued Contributor

Welcome Royoraf. The pinned posts have suggestions on how others have dealt with them. I found have something to do or focus on helped me. Just turning my mind from one thing to another helped me forget the crave. I used an ecig, but others have used gum, candy or carrots to keep their mouth occupied. Cold water and hot tea helped.

mushenValued Contributor

I don't think there is any particular method to dealing with this. I think you just have to plough through it. Cling onto the thought that anything you did while smoking, you can do just the same, not smoking. Every time you carry out an activity (or whatever) and don't smoke, it helps to disassociate it with the act of smoking.

Atta13 Months Smoke Free

When I get a thought like that I just tell myself yes I would have had a cigarette but I don't smoke anymore. I don't get many of these thoughts anymore and have only been smoke free just over 2 months

taurean72 Years Smoke Free

Welcome Royoraf . I agree with mushen. Once you get past a trigger without smoking it becomes much easier. I knew that coffee and wine would be my downfall, so I switched to tea and avoided the wine until I felt I strong enough not to smoke with them. With time you think less and less about smoking. Champix certainly helped me. Stay focused and get thru 1 day at a time.

Exsmo in reply to taurean7

I was sme w coffee & wine. Didn’t have wine til off chantix tho. Some people had weird reactions to the mix. 4 months in, am off chantix and enjoying a glass now! So good to know it was only a temporary thing. Can have coffe now too.


Huge welcome to our community Royoraf and congratulations on over 1 day smoke free, well done!

We have several members here that successfully stopped using champix and over their 1 and 2 year milestones. By the end of day 3, the nicotine will be out of your system and you will be in the thick of the mental battle as your body and mind rewire, repair and recover.

I stopped over 2 years ago cold turkey and created below pinned post before Christmas as still get the out of blue cravings but learned to keep my guard up at all times, ready to attack, like other replied, try to prepare yourself for these, water was my savior, deep breathing and keeping busy in the early days and just taking it one day at a time, even hour by hour if needs be, lots of early nights and be kind to yourself as stopping will likely be your best ever achievement. Read up as much as you can - knowledge is power when we stop.

Once you get over these daily life curveballs once, the easier and less severe they will be the next time.

Below is another pinned post on tips with cravings worth a read if not already done so

We look forward to reading your progress updates :)

RoisinO1Administrator in reply to RoisinO1

How is Day 3 going Royoraf ?

Exsmo in reply to RoisinO1

Listen to the water especially! Saved me a million times over. So dimple but so effective. Someting about the cold. Aldo used frozen diced mango & frozen grapes 🍇. Was SUCH a treat I didn’t feel so deprived.

Karina123Valued Contributor

I quit with chantix the pill helped me on the physical nic withdraw but not emotionally or behavioral .So In my case the first month after quitting I found very helpful eating extra ..specially iced fruit and sweet foods .Now I admit I wished I did more exercise ..

I also used my zero nicotine vape when I was extremely anxious .

In any case it’s all about distracting your mind .

Get well informed and read every day ..Reading all about smoking and the benefits about quitting is very beneficial in times of tension and urges ..And very important get extra busy and drink lots if water

Phobicmaniac2 Years Smoke Free

Welcome Royoraf and well done on what must be day 3 now, this is a great site for support and encouragement as quitting can be a lonely place at times.....

Jared01Valued Contributor

Hi Royoraf , can't add anything more to the above brilliant advice given - how are finding things now?

Royoraf in reply to Jared01

Thanks Jared, tis much easier now I'm a week in. Friday night was a struggle (had 3!), Shouldn't have gone to the pub so soon! Now more habit tackling, seem to keep forgetting that I've quit, i just opened my hand bag to find one when I got off the train! (None there though!) I'm now onto the phase of mourning a long lost friend!!

Jared01Valued Contributor in reply to Royoraf

Sorry to read you smoked Royoraf - have you re-started from Friday night?

Royoraf in reply to Jared01

Oh yes, twas merely a boozey moment of weakness. I think it was necessary to remind me how awful smokey mouth is the next day! Back on the wagon 😁

Jared01Valued Contributor in reply to Royoraf

Good you have restarted Royoraf as strict discipline is vital in the success of stopping as Roisin rightly advised below.

RoisinO1Administrator in reply to Royoraf

As you relapsed Royoraf, I will have to remove your smoke free badge of 1 week - have you restarted your journey, if so, what new date would you like me to use?

It is important to restart if you have a slip as many don't and makes it easier the next time to just have 'the one' until you are back to square one again and a full-time smoker.

Alcohol is the most common cause to relapse, you appear to know its a trigger now and to avoid it until you are stronger. They say it takes 21 days to break a habit, but needs to assisted along with removing all smoking related stuff to avoid temptation.

The mourning phase you describe is perfectly normal..... below is a link to some pinned posts worth a read if not already done so:

Jared01Valued Contributor in reply to RoisinO1

So true RoisinO1 about re-starting and disciplining yourself, its a tough love situation when overcoming addiction and took me my 4 attempts to realize this to now be over 2 years smoke free :)

Well i can only agree with above so can only add, dont try mot to think about smoking... that makes you think about it more. Like Karina123 said distract your mind instead. I too wish id exercised at beginning but could hardly lift out of bed after 1month! (Other health issues.. still wished i forced myself...either way my heftier self is happy i quit & will be On getting weight Off!)

You may also like...