Whatever the trigger was, it happened: You grabbed your cigarette again. As soon as the cigarette has been smoked, feelings of guilt and doubts usually spread. “I will never make it! “That doesn’t make any sense anyway! “Now it’s too late anyway!
Do such thoughts seem familiar to you, have you even had a failed quitting attempt behind you or would you like to be properly prepared for a possible relapse in advance?
Then you should know for your own reassurance first of all the current statistics around the topic and on the other hand know how to best deal with relapsing. We have compiled all important information for you.
A Look at the Statistics: You Are Not Alone!
Stopping smoking is difficult – this seemingly banal and central finding is reflected in all studies and research results on the topic of relapse while smoking. Here is an overview of the most important ones:
The Most Important Insight: Don't Let one Cigarette Discourage You!
The decisive conclusion to be drawn from the quota is that relapses are anything but unusual. According to many experts, they are almost inevitably part of stopping and should therefore not discourage you under any circumstances.
On the contrary, you can even see the relapse as an incentive to resist the temptation of a cigarette exactly in the triggering situation in the future or to skilfully avoid it.
According to the motto “giving up is not an option” the relapse is perfect to become aware of your own motivation and to face the fight against addiction more committed than ever before. Withdrawal is by no means easy, but you can do it!
We have put together the following tips for you on how to react correctly in a specific case.
Tip 1: Don't Allow any Self-Reproaches or negative Thoughts After a Cigarette Drag You Down
Yes, it happened and yes, you could have resisted – but now you can’t change your relapse anyway. Instead of struggling with self-reproaches, you should look at the cigarette as what it is: a unique slip from which you can learn for the future.
Tip 2: Consider Recidivism Becoming a Perfect Final Deterrent
Did the forbidden cigarette actually give you no satisfaction at all or not even taste good anymore? If you relapse after 4 weeks or an even longer smokeless period, this is often the case.
In this case you can use the whole thing to your advantage to get rid of your addiction. It is best to write down your thoughts directly while smoking and always bring them out when you are tempted. The perfect deterrent!
Tip 3: Get Your Smoking Relapse Right
Experts divide relapses into three types. Is it just a one-time slip, like at a party? Have you had several cigarettes in the last few days? Or have you completely succumbed to your old smoking habits?
In the first two cases you can easily start the complete exit again and book the relapse as a “one-time slip”. If, on the other hand, you have fallen completely back into addiction again, you should make use of additional support at the next attempt. For example, a professional non-smoking program can help you.
Tip 4: Analyze the Circumstances, When, Where and How it Happened
What triggered the relapse? The honest answer to this question will help you to deal with the situation differently in the future. Think about strategies to react to others’ smoking breaks when visiting the beer garden, find a friend who reminds you of your intentions or chew chew gum when the desire for a cigarette becomes overwhelming – there are many possibilities
Tip 5: Get Out Without Gaining Weight
If you regularly reach into the chip bag instead of a cigarette, you will naturally gain weight in the long run. Fearing relapse, however, is the completely wrong consequence. If you know the food trap, you can take countermeasures in time and master the smoke exit without gaining weight.
Tip: Prevent Relapses in The Future to Finally Quit Smoking
If you have an acute urge to smoke, you should be well prepared in the future. The following measures will help:
- First pause for a moment and consider whether the one cigarette really justifies giving up your goal.
- Force yourself to wait 5 minutes before you actually reach for the lighter.
- Leave immediately the situation in which the urge has overcome you.
- Distract yourself with alternative activities such as breathing exercises, chewing gum or drinking water.
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