When you’re trying to give up smoking, socialising can be difficult - particularly if your friends, families and others around you are smoking. The best thing to do to avoid temptation is to have an action plan before the situation occurs. 

Firstly, don’t stop socialising. Punishing yourself for not smoking only creates a negative association with quitting - so don’t stop socialising with your friends and family. 

However, it is important that the people you socialise with are aware that you’re trying to give up smoking, so they can support you appropriately without any encouragement or judgement. 

Now comes the action plan. It’s important to discover what works for you but here’s some inspiration. 

Create a distraction

Depending on your environment, creating a viable distraction is always worthwhile. This could be anything from listening to your favourite song; taking a walk; reading posters/menus in the building; listening to a podcast; noting the things you see around you, or anything else that takes your mind off of your craving. 

Wait it out

Acting on a craving immediately will only have one result - breaking your no cigarettes streak. Instead, it’s best to promise yourself that you will wait at least 10 minutes before making a decision. You’ll usually find that after 10 minutes the intensity of the urge will have dramatically decreased. 

Make yourself some rules

Discipline is the key to any health goal. Creating some rules will help you to diminish urges even more. This could be anything from walking a mile, drinking a bottle of water, doing X amount of pushups before giving in to a craving. Not only can these rules absorb the time to lessen your urges but the inconvenience of them could also put you off even more.

Call or text someone

Be aware of the people that are supporting you on your no-smoking journey and reach out to them in your moment of weakness. They’ll be able to provide the advice and support you need to resist the temptation.

Remember your reasons for quitting

Whether it’s a note in your phone or a slip of paper in your wallet, note down the key reasons for quitting in the first place and remind yourself of them whenever you’re thinking about smoking again. 

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