Who would have thought that smoking would become an addiction? Well all those who find themselves hooked to this habit, never intended to let smoking become such an integral part of their lives. These things just happen, and before we realize it, we find yourselves smoking 7-10-15-20 cigarettes a day. Most people do not smoke because they enjoy the act, they smoke because it helps them deal with stress and boredom. If you wish to help a loved one quit smoking, you must firstly ensure that your friend has seriously made up his or her mind on giving up smoking. Their dilly-dally attitude will not work and will not yield any positive results. The iron-fist rule will not apply in this case, because addictions can never be dealt with by using coercion or sarcasm. It needs patience, consideration, and encouragement towards the person who is trying to give up this habit. I know, you might be thinking that you have done all of these and still things didn't improve, but you need to realize that sometimes it can turn into a long-hard battle of patience. You will need to keep trying in spite of failed attempts, in order to help yourself or a friend quit this dangerous habit.
Way to Help a Friend Quit Smoking
►Ask your friend why they resort to smoking and what attracts them towards this habit? You will need to prevent yourself from making judgmental assumptions and statements, while they open up to you.
►Make a pact with your friend or loved one, through which both of you mutually decide to give up on one bad habit. While your friend tries to quit smoking you can try giving up on a bad habit of your own. This will help your friend feel like he or she has a companion and will not be left alone to face his/her fears.
►Ask them what you can do to help them quit. Simply being there for them, can make a world of difference. There will be times, when the smoker will feel the sinister urge to smoke, and will need to fight his craving. During these times, it would be better if they could have a supportive friend to speak over the phone or chat online with. You can encourage them to hold on and have strength.
►Make it a point to celebrate small victories, as this will help boost the smoker's morale. Smoking is a sign of insecurity and low self-esteem, maybe not evident ones but deep-rooted issues which we all tend to harbor and suppress. Everyone has their own way of venting their frustration - for some, smoking and drinking is just another way to do the same. These celebrations need not be grand, and could simply be small gestures, such as leaving 'Thank you' and 'Well Done!' notes, for them. You could also take them to a restaurant for a casual meal.
►There will be times when the smoker will wish to resume smoking. Take this opportunity to discuss why quitting smoking is so important for everyone involved. Passive smokers are just as vulnerable to health problems as actual smokers are, therefore the other members of the family including you, are all being put to risk. Tell the smoker that he is harming the lives and health of other innocent people. Do not make a speech out of this point, and instead try to broach the topic in a more compassionate manner.
►Try to discuss how expensive this habit really is, and wouldn't it be better to completely cut this unnecessary expense out of the monthly budget? Wouldn't it be wiser to save all that money and use it for something more fun and useful, like a vacation, or a new laptop?
►It would be wise to ban smoking within the house or restrict it to the terrace or balcony of the house, so that the smoke does not enter the house. It is difficult to simply quit in one go, which is why many prefer to cut down on their cigarette consumption with each day. However, it is better to quit once and for all, and deal with the withdrawal symptoms thereafter.
►Explain how unhygienic smoking really is and how it makes the smoker's clothes, hair, hands, and breath smell bad. Let them know that it is very putting-off and it upsets you as well as others around.
►Remember to complement your friend in front of others, whenever they try to offer him/her a smoke. Do not be boastful about this recent development, and instead try to convey how proud you are of their initiative to quit smoking for good! This will keep their morale up and will give them the impetus to go on.
Once a smoker has begun trying to quit, it would be nice to appreciate him or her for the endeavor and efforts. It is by no means an easy task and requires one to let go of a habit that has developed over several years. It will take some time, so you will need to be patient. Good Luck!