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Things to Consider Before Quitting

Personal Reasons for Quitting

There are many reasons to quit smoking. Which ones are most important to you? Look at the list below, think of reasons that apply to you, and add any extras you can think of:

  • Choose MultiCare FamilyI’m ready for a change
  • Smoking is affecting my relationships
  • I want fewer sick days and lost wages
  • I want to improve my health
  • I want to save money by not purchasing cigarettes
  • I’m planning on having a baby
  • I want to enjoy the smell and taste of food
  • I am tired of standing outside in the cold
  • It’s becoming harder to find places to smoke
  • Almost everywhere I go, smoking is not allowed
  • I don’t want to expose my family and friends to second hand smoke

Stay Inspired

One of your reasons for quitting may be a family member. It may be an activity/ hobby you currently enjoy, or a vacation you plan on taking. Whatever it is, create a quick visual reminder by taping a photograph on your refrigerator or keep it in your wallet.

Identify Your Smoking Risk Situations

Smoking can become automatic for a lot of people. You may not even realize when and why you  smoke. Take time to identify the situations that may trigger you to smoke:

Times of Day
  • Mealtimes, or just after a meal
  • When I get home from work
  • Watching TV or listening to the radio
  • Talking on the phone
  • Having a cup of coffee or tea
  • When I first wake up


  • Being with other smokers
  • When someone offers me a cigarette
  • Family stress
  • Meeting a friend who smokes


  • At home
  • At work
  • Outdoors


  • Angry
  • Bored
  • Happy or relaxed

pack wraps thumbnailPrint Out: Pack Wraps

Complete the pack wrap by clicking on the PDF link above, printing it out, and then rubber band it around a pack of cigarettes. Each time you want to smoke fill in the pack-wrap sheet first. The sheet will aid in recognizing patterns related to your smoking routine.

Are You Addicted to Nicotine?

The Fagerstrӧm Quiz for Nicotine Dependence is designed to help you and your doctor determine how dependent you are on nicotine found in cigarettes.

Take the Quiz

​Being Prepared with Quit Strategies

A Quit Strategy is a concrete way to fight an urge to smoke. It can help you deal with specific situations.
Having a Quit Strategy ready in advance may help you overcome risk situations. Take a look at the following common Quit Strategies for ideas.

Talk it Out - Calling someone or visiting a supportive friend may be just the distraction you need to keep you from thinking about smoking. Remember, there are quit hotlines that can help you through tough moments

Do Something Active - Exercise. Walk. Work in the garden. Keep your body moving. This may energize you and make you feel healthier. 

Go Somewhere You Can't Smoke - Visit a non-smoking friend's home, or go to the movies or a mall. Knowing that you're in a place where you can't smoke can take some of the pressure off of you. 

Carry a Water Bottle - Drinking water will help you keep hydrated. And it gives your mouth and hands something to do. 

Keep Your Hands Busy - Take up sudoku, origami or knitting. Perfect your yo-yo or Frisbee skills. Try playing mobile games.

Leave the Situation - Your urge to smoke may go away if what's causing the urge is no longer in front of you. Go for a walk and focus on something else. It can help you clear your head. 

Switch up the Routine - By switching up your routine, you're breaking links you've formed between smoking and certain activities. Try something new, like taking a different route on your way home from work. 

Quieting Response - Practice a quieting response by breathing in deeply through your nose while smiling inwardly; hold that breath for four counts; release the breath through your mouth. Repeat about four times. 

Create a Cigarette-Free Zone

Form Your 24-hr Action Plan to Succeed on Quit Day

This to-do list of strategies is designed to help you get through your Quit Day. Doing a little prep work can take some of the guesswork out of your day. This should help boost your self-confidence and resolve:

  • Remember, you have 1 goal for the day – to get through it without smoking.
  • Look back at the Identify Your Smoking Risk Situations and Being Prepared With Quit Strategies sections on this page.
  • Take a moment to think about today, your quit day. What situations might I run into? Which Quit Strategies can help me get past them? Use these ideas to create your plan.
  • Consider treating yourself on your quit day. For some it may be a massage or facial, or attending a movie.

Feel the Urge to Smoke? Try the four D's: 

  • Delay - the urge will pass within 3-5 minutes
  • Deep breathe - holding in for four counts; out for 8 counts
  • Drink water - focus on drinking 8 cups a day
  • Distract yourself - with an activity

Fill out your 24-Hour Action Plan and keep it with you today.

Next Page: On Your Quit Day »