You’ve been bottling up your feelings for a long time. So many of your friends are telling you that it’s time to move on and get out of this bad relationship. You’ve spent the last month convincing yourself that it’s the right thing to do. This Monday, it’s time to confront the obvious – it’s time to call it quits with smoking.
It might seem like a silly way to frame your relationship with cigarettes, but smoking does constitute a significant part of your daily life. But just because cigarettes were a big part of your life doesn’t mean they were good or healthy. By now, you don’t have to tell yourself that it’s time to end this relationship and declare your independence from nicotine. Now that you’ve decided to quit, it’s time to put your plan to quit in motion.
During the first few days of quitting smoking, it may feel like there is a void that needs to be filled. While you were coming up with your quit plan, you came up with healthy ways to fill that void. Using the dating analogy, it might be tempting to fill the cigarette void with another vice – the same way people sometimes rush into new relationships to avoid feeling alone. Instead, celebrate being on your own. By sticking to healthy alternatives to smoking, like working out or healthy snacks, you are doing something good for yourself that is ultimately more fulfilling.
As you embark on your new life without cigarettes, remember to include self-care in addition to your motivation and willpower. Reward yourself every Monday when you achieve a new goal – treat yourself to a night out at a restaurant for something nutritious that you wouldn’t make for yourself. Take yourself out to a theater or download a movie you’ve had your eye on. Do something relaxing and therapeutic like get a massage, visit a spa or take a long, hot bath.
Taking care of yourself doesn’t mean you have to quit smoking alone. If you need help, reach out and get in touch with other people who have quit smoking. Join our online community of former smokers on Facebook and follow the #QuitMonday hashtag on social media. If you want to talk to an expert, call 1-800-QUIT-NOW to speak to a live counselor.
The bottom line: Quitting smoking is something you’re doing for yourself and your well-being. Embrace the new, healthier you when you quit on Monday and recommit every Monday after that. Celebrate the end of a toxic relationship!