Thanks to Jillygirl for finding the following information out for us to share with you all;
What does it take to stay quit?
Quitting smoking can be a long and hard process. But staying quit is the longest and most important part of it. Every day you must decide not to smoke today. Each day that you do not smoke is a small victory. These all add up to a huge victory over time. Many of the things you did to help you quit smoking can help you gain that victory
How can I get through rough spots after I stop smoking?
For the first few days after you quit smoking, spend as much free time as you can in public places where smoking is not allowed. (Places like libraries, malls, museums, theaters, restaurants without bars, and churches are often smoke-free. Look for the no-smoking signs.)
Take care of yourself. Drink water, eat well, and get enough rest. This can help you have the energy you may need to handle extra stress.
Don’t drink alcohol, coffee, or any other drinks you link with smoking. Try something else instead – maybe different types of water, sports drinks, or 100% fruit juices. Try to choose drinks that are low- or no-calorie.
If you miss the feeling of having a cigarette in your hand, hold something else – a pencil, a paper clip, a coin, or a marble, for example.
If you miss the feeling of having something in your mouth, try toothpicks, cinnamon sticks, sugarless gum, sugar-free lollipops, or celery. Some people chew on a straw or stir stick.
Avoid temptation – stay away from people and places you link with smoking.
Find new habits and create a non-smoking environment around you.
Be ready for future situations or crises that might make you want to smoke again, and think of all the important reasons you have decided to quit.
To remind yourself of these reasons, you may want to put a picture of the people who are the most important to you somewhere you see it every day, or keep one handy in your purse or wallet.
Take deep breaths to relax. Picture your lungs filling with fresh, clean air.
Remember your goal and the fact that the urges to smoke will get better over time.
Think positive thoughts about how brilliant it is that you are quitting smoking and getting healthy
If you notice your thoughts taking a downturn, try replacing them with a mental picture of your goal. Remember that quitting is a learning process. Be patient with yourself.
Brush your teeth and enjoy that fresh taste.
Exercise in brief bursts (try alternately tensing and relaxing muscles, push-ups, lunges, walking up the stairs, or touching your toes)
Call a friend, family member, or a telephone stop-smoking help-line when you need extra help or support
Eat 4 to 6 small meals during the day instead of 1 or 2 large ones. This keeps your blood sugar levels steady, your energy balanced, and helps prevent the urge to smoke. Avoid sugary or spicy foods that may trigger a desire to smoke
Above all, reward yourself for doing your best. Give yourself rewards often if that’s what it takes to keep going. Plan to do something fun
When you get the “crazies”
Cravings are real – they’re not just your imagination. When you feel the “crazies” you may also notice that your mood changes, and your heart rate and blood pressure may go up. Try these tips to get through these times, and hang in there – the cravings will get better:
Keep substitutes handy that you can suck or chew on, such as carrots, pickles, apples, celery, raisins, or sugar-free gum or hard candy
Know that anger, frustration, anxiety, irritability, and even depression are normal after quitting and will get better with time. See your doctor if these feelings last for more than a month
Take 10 deep breaths, and hold the last one while lighting a match. Exhale slowly and blow out the match. Pretend it is a cigarette and put it out in an ashtray
Go for a walk. Exercise can improve your mood and relieve stress
Take a shower or bath
Learn to relax quickly and deeply. Make yourself go limp. Think about a soothing, pleasing situation, and imagine yourself there. Get away from it all for a moment. Focus on that peaceful image and nothing else
Light incense or a candle instead of a cigarette
Tell yourself “no.” Say it out loud. Practice doing this a few times, and listen to yourself. Some other things you can say to yourself might be, “I’m too strong to give in to smoking,” “I’m not a smoker now,” or “I don’t want to let my friends and family down.”
Never allow yourself to think that “one cigarette won’t hurt,” because it very likely will
Wear a rubber band around your wrist. Whenever you have a thought about smoking, snap it against your wrist to remind yourself of all the unpleasant reasons that made you want to quit in the first place. Then remember that you will not always need a rubber band to help you stay in line with your plans to quit
Other ways to stay active
You may have a lot of pent-up energy while trying to quit. Consider these activities when you’re looking for something to do besides smoking. And many of these things can help keep you from gaining weight after quitting, too.
Many of these activities are free. Others are fairly cheap. Some of the exercises can be done at home – for instance, you can rent a DVD for beginner’s yoga, tai chi, or aerobics – or maybe even borrow one from the library. And you can always make up your own activities – this is just a starter list of ideas. Notice how over time it gets easier to do these things. And watch how much better you can breathe as each day passes without smoking;
Walking or jogging
Working around your home
Cooking, grilling, or baking
Organizing/cleaning out the basement, garage, closet, or attic
Organizing a car boot / yard sale
Washing/waxing the car
Vacuuming and dusting
Walking the dog (your's or a friend’s)
Fishing or camping
Having a picnic
Getting a manicure or pedicure
Going to a car boot, garage sale or yard sale
Going to a library or bookstore
Going to a museum
Going to a movie
Hobbies and crafts
Playing (or learning) a musical instrument
Starting a collection (stamps, coins, or shells, for example)
Puzzles (crossword or jigsaw)
Board games with family or friends
Starting a journal or scrapbook
Knitting, crocheting, sewing, or other needlework
Writing (journaling, letters to the editor, poems, articles, books)
Listening to a relaxation CD
Taking a nap
Listening to music
Catching up on emails
Being with others
Calling an old friend
Having someone over for dinner or to watch movies
Going out to eat
Joining a group or club
Having a family get-together
Staying quit over the holidays
The first few weeks after quitting smoking can be hard for anyone. And staying quit may be extra tough during the holiday season, when stress and the temptation to overindulge are often worse. Some special efforts can help you celebrate the holidays without giving in to the urge to smoke. Many of these ideas can also be helpful throughout the year.
Celebrate being an ex-smoker and try these tips to keep your mind off smoking:
Be a host
Consider hosting the family dinner to keep yourself busy. Shopping and cooking will certainly take up a lot of your time. If you would prefer being a guest this year, maybe you can make a special dish to take with you.
Don’t overdo it
Without smoking, you might be inclined to go overboard with the holiday feasting. Be aware of how much you are eating and drinking; it may be easy to give in to these other temptations. If you do overdo it, forgive yourself. Remember, next year it won’t be as hard.
Try to stay away from alcohol
Stick to club soda, seltzer, punch without alcohol, or apple cider. This will curb the urge to light up when drinking and can also help keep off extra pounds
Avoid spicy and sugary foods
Spicy and sugary foods tend to enhance cravings for cigarettes.
Nibble on low-calorie foods
Low-calorie foods such as carrot sticks, apples, and other healthy snacks, help to satisfy your need for crunch without adding up to extra pounds.
Stretch out meals
Eat slowly and pause between bites to make a meal more satisfying. For dessert, grab an orange or tangerine, or crack some nuts – something that will keep your hands busy
Keep busy at parties
Playing bartender, serving snacks, and meeting guests will help keep your mind off smoking. If the urge to smoke presents itself, put something in your hand other than a cigarette. A bartender’s mixing straw is a perfect substitute.
Treat yourself to something special
As a celebration of staying quit, think about buying yourself that special something you’ve been wanting.
Don’t wait until the last minute to shop
Any added frustration can leave you wanting a cigarette. Take along your favorite magazine, book, or catalogue to look through while waiting in line. When you feel you are ready to lose control, stop and think. Take hold of yourself and start talking with someone in line next to you, or start looking at what you brought with you
If you have a weak moment during the holidays and slip, don’t panic. Walk through the door, take a deep breath, and decide to resume your quitting program right away. Destroy any cigarettes you have before you’re tempted to smoke another. Remind yourself of your commitment to quit, and all the reasons you quit. Try to figure out why you had a setback and learn from it.
Here are more ideas that have helped smokers kick the habit:
When you wake up each morning, make the promise you won’t smoke a cigarette that day. A day at a time keeps the whole thing more manageable.
Picture your success
Plan ahead and think of how you will deal with stressful situations without turning to cigarettes.
Take a breather
Relaxation exercises can help relieve the urge to smoke. Take a deep breath, hold it for a second, then release it very slowly. Remember, the urge to smoke is only temporary. It will pass.
Physical activity, such as swimming, running, and racquet sports, helps relieve tension and the urge to smoke. Exercise will also help burn off any extra pounds.
Make friends of ex-smokers and non-smokers
Ex-smokers and non-smokers can be your partners to help keep you busy and away from cigarettes. Plan time together that explores new outlets you might enjoy. Remember, you are learning to be a non-smoker, and you need to find new places and activities to replace your old smoking-centered ones.
This list should give you plenty of thought and will at least keep you busy by just thinking about everything it has suggested. There is something for everyone within the above, so what will you choose to help you?
Remember, you can do this and you will do it. Whether it is now or in the future, you will get there eventually. Just believe in yourself and know that we are all behind you all the way