So have any of you guys on here quit smoking?

Because I have decided to quit and I need some suggestions on how to do this successfully. I was smoking 5-6 packs a day, I'm down to about half a pack a day now, but I need to quit altogether. I just can't seem to shake the habit.

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Wow, Caleb. 5-6 packs a DAY! I'm having a hard time just comprehending THAT! I take my hat off to you for getting down to just a half pack. I gotta ask... how did you accomplish that feat??
Also Caleb, I'd like to commend you for taking care of yourself. That way you will be there for your new child to be.
This is my fifth day without it (also gave up the evening boozing at the same time). It helps a great deal to have a commitment with someone else, you're going to quit at the same time. My wife smoked longer than I did, so glad to have her along for the ride.

It helped me to think about several things. One is that I was simply doing it out of habit, and I need to replace it with something better, even if it is sugar-free mints (I'm diabetic, too). I really wasn't having any pleasure from it. Another is to remember the cost. Here in NY, it was over $8 USD a pack. Since we did not smoke indoors, we did not have to consider the benefit that we are no longer stinking up the house or staining the walls.

I did a search on side effects, and how long it takes. I suggest that you do the same so that you know what you are experiencing (I had headaches a couple of days, my wife had a bit of nausea, but both passed). There is a strange form of grieving with this because it is the death of a relationship. Better the relationship than you, however!

"I do believe I'm feeling stronger every day", sang Chicago, and that is my case. Every day, the cravings get weaker and less frequent. Yes, I get cranky (but I am aware of it so I am able to bridle my tongue around the wife an co-workers, then take it out on my political opponents under assumed names).

Also, I have made myself accountable by bragging to people. In turn, they ask, "How's it going? Still clean?" Yup! It's a good feeling to brag on the success, and that it is getting easier.

The first week is the most difficult. Some people call it "Glory Week". I don't. There are some symptoms and difficulties that peak at different times, some are gone after the first two or three days. Warning: Don't cave in to pressure or circumstances (the car breaks down, unexpected bill in the mail) that would normally send you screaming for a cig.

Encourage yourself. Give yourself a reward, even if it is four times a day (hope it's not booze, though).

Change the habits. If you normally fire one up at breakfast while drinking coffee and reading the paper, rearrange that situation so it is not so familiar.

If you want to talk more, "friend me up" (thanks for the term, Brett) and we can have at it. I wish you success, and know that it is possible.
Youre getting ready to deploy and you want to quit smoking??? Good luck with that. If you were one of my soldiers I would simply tell you to stop smoking and you would do it. But alas, I am a civilian with memories of a past life in uniform and I hung up my authority with my boots.

I got nothing for you dude. The only way you can quit during the stress of deployment is to go cold turkey stop being a wussy and be Iron Mike.
Try to stay focused on other things. The urge to smoke will last for less than two minutes - A very long two minutes. You can do this.
Have you thought about using a nicotine replacement (gum, patch, etc.) That worked for me. Good luck to you !
Well 5-6 packs/day is what I can hardly imagine. But basically, I can give some advice because I was smoking pack per day.
One day, after work I realised, that most of the cigarettes taste like shit. You want to spit around, eat something or drink something just to get it out of your mouth. But that's the case with most of them.
I personally have 3 cigarettes that taste perfect during the day. That is the after breakfeast cigarette with coffee, then the before lunch cigarette and the evening cigarette which is around 7-8 PM. Those are good. They really taste well and basically that is why most of the people smoke. But they smoke much more, simply wanting for it to taste real good.
Hence, I smoke 3 cigarettes per day. And it feels good. If they are going to kill me, well, then I'm thankful for the enormous pleasure.
But since this is only my personal statement which was developed in some time, I would like to give some straight advise:
- Never smoke before breakfast (add some other rules "never smoke [before/after/during] [something]");
- While smoking, sometimes ask yourself, do you still want that cigarette? If no, throw it away. While this might seem like a wasteful thing to do, it helps to lower the needed dose of nicotine.

What's more, try to concentrate on the bigger picture. Like, for example, you want to quit smoking for a reason. Pursue that reason and don't concentrate on the smaller thing which is quiting smoking. If your goal is to have good health, ask yourself if this step is going to help reach it. Do excercise, workout. Eventually, you will quit smoking, because it will contradict with your sports activities and if you have goals set, you can't let your pleasures interfere with them.

Excuse my poor English, not my native language but I did my best :)
To reinforce some of what you said, I began cutting back because I realized that I was not taking pleasure in them. When they were spaced apart over many hours, I liked them better. But eventually, I stopped having any pleasure in them and was thinking, "What the hell am I doing, anyway?"
Good for you Caleb. Quitting smoking is a real pain in the butt, but you'll thank yourself for it a few years down the track. I gave up smoking a pack a day about 9 years ago now, and haven't looked back. My suggestion to you would be to change as much about your routine as possible, and don't let yourself get bored. Try to eliminate those things that remind you to have a smoke, such as bars, friends who smoke, etc until you've managed to go a full month without a smoke. Once you've done it for a month, you'll start to notice a difference, so it gets easier.

Don't forget you can always post here if you feel tempted, so keep us updated of your progress :)
Mr. Shaun mentioned a very important point which is peer pressure. The problem is that smoking is like a social environment. When you smoke, you discuss things, socialize, etc. And avoiding that might be very very hard. So instead of avoiding, attend to smoking breaks for example eating an apple. You will still be doing something that takes as much time and since you will be doing something, there will be no pressure for you to smoke and you can still involve in the social action. Maybe someday, you will all be eating apples :)
As a former soldier myself I can attest to the difficulty in not smoking when every one around you is puffing like a chinese chimney and other people are shooting at you not to mention the thousand other stresses of being away from home in a hostile country for a year or more. All the suggestions given so far are very good, if you have a 9-5 job and go home every day to the 2.5 kids and a dog. Caleb is a soldier being deployed to a war zone, the suggestions given will not work in his non standard environment. Truth be told, Caleb, if you want to quit smoking you need to start acting like a diciplined soldier and not a little boy civilian in uniform. Put down the cigs and walk away, master your body instead of being it's slave. View quitting smoking like any other mission you are given, hard or easy there is not excuse or quarter given for failure. You can do it, tell yourself you will do it, then get it done. It's easy.
I understand the military is different, ok, but if you said that to my face, I'd probably punch you. This is supposed to be a support group, isn't it? Try to be a at least a LITTLE more positive. Give the boy a reason to think he can do this.
Congratulations on your decision to quit smoking, Caleb. It is one of the best medical decisions you can make for yourself. I can only tewll you how I did it knowing that this may not be the best course of action for you. First off, if there is a significant other in your life, it is best that you quit together. Having another person off which to bounce your frustration is a GREAT help. MY wife and I decided to try the Chantix route and it worked for us. There are horror stories about vivid nightmares and suicidal thoughts, none of which happened to us but it most definitely happens to some. In time, Chantix makes cig smoke taste like air and there is no accompying head change, so smoking becomes pointless no matter how much you smoke. It took us only a month to fully quit and that was two years ago.

Whatever you decide, I wish you the best of luck on an arduous journey.

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