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How I stopped smoking

So this might be a story many of you are very familiar with. Quitting smoking is probably on of the hardest things on the planet to do. At least, I found so anyway. There were a number of ways I tried- and I really mean everything. For those looking to quit, you may wish to seek some official advice from the NHS website.

Tried and tested quit smoking methods

So here they are….every method I tried to quit smoking.

NB, these are my personal opinions….just because they did or didn’t work for me, doesn’t mean they will / won’t for you!

  • Cutting down
  • Patches
  • Gum
  • Will power(!) / Cold Turkey
  • Electronic Cigarettes
  • Hypnosis / NLP

Cutting down

This was my first failed and totally botched attempt at quitting the fags. On a typical day I was smoking around 20 cigarettes, so I figured at first I’d try cutting down by one a week. Great idea, but you forget how many you are actually supposed to smoking.

So next I tried making a really pretty tally chart / spreadsheet (Yes, I have OCD!). I even pinned it up on the fridge in the kitchen. It looked something like this:

Week 1: 18 a day
Week 2: 16 a day
Week 3: 14 a day
Week 4: 12 a day
Week 5: 10 a day
Week 6: 8 a day
Week 7: 6 a day
Week 8: 4 a day
Week 9: 2 a day
Week 10: 0 a day

So how did it go?

The first 2 weeks went very well. The third week, urgh. My wife and I were invited to a work colleagues Christening. We sat at the table of a great couple called Sue and Keith. Sue had quit smoking for 18 months, but Keith was on the rollies. I had deliberately come out with a staple 12 cigarettes (I’d had 2 in the morning before leaving for the church). As the night went on, and the beers flowed….well I got past my 12 and had one of Keith’s roll ups. And another…and another. You get the picture.

The problem is, to try this method, I needed discipline. Something I have in no great quantity (LOL!).

So the next day, a Sunday, I was like…I’ll have 20 today then start fresh on Monday. Monday I felt so guilty it never happened.

Verdict: FAIL.


Seriously, probably the second worse attempt for me. Reading up on smoking cessation, I understand from psychology the concepts of chemical addiction and habitual addiction. It’s quite clear from the patches, and the gum (see below), that chemical dependence to cigarettes (the nicotine and the other crap in them), was never really a problem for me. It was the habit. The going outside for a fag and a break at work. When I was really stressed, I’d lamp up. If I was in the pub and having a pint, I had to have a fag (well until they banned it!). So simply feeding me nicotine was missing out on the other half of the equation.

Verdict: FAIL.


As above, completely missed out on my habitual dependence to cigarettes. Gum gave me the nicotine, but not the habitual cravings. Oh, and did I mention it tastes disgusting?!

Verdict: FAIL.

Will Power / Cold Turkey

Sue, who we met at the Christening had off the fags through pure will power and determination and I really admired that.

After hearing her efforts, I did try this a few week later, mostly out of desperation after the gum made me feel so sick!!

With Will Power and Cold Turkey I lasted 3 weeks and 6 days. Which, of all the attempts had been the best. The first few days were hell. As I went on it got easier and easier. The problem was when I went out with the lads. The first time I got drunk, the will power went. I had a ciggy…and well, that was that.

Electronic Cigarette

As you probably guessed by this blog, electronic cigarettes were a success for me. I wouldn’t say there were a quit smoking method though (I know, I’m contradicting myself). For those that want to rid themselves of the ‘dependence’, in my opinion, electronic cigarettes aren’t it.

Why? Because really what you are doing is swapping one habit for another.

That said, with some perseverance on finding the right device, e-liquid and supplier, I found my happy medium and got off the fags.

Verdict: SUCCESS

Hypnosis / NLP

I have to admit, when I first tried this I wasn’t just skeptical, I was ‘effing and blinding all car journey there. This was suggested by my wife, who’s friend at work was married to a hypnotherapist. So, I’ve got to be careful what I say here so as not to offend, but here goes!

I’m quite stubborn, so the idea of any kind of therapy irritates me. I suppose if I am honest, it touches a raw nerve.

To my credit (LOL!) I gave it a go though.

In short, for an hour I was made to feel very relax (to the point I nodded off a couple of times!). The hypnotherapist then tried to associate all the negative feelings associated with smoking- the smelly fingers, the taste…the actual horrible health risks.

I actually stopped for two days, but in the end…it just wore off. As a lasting solution it didn’t work for me personally. That’s not to say it wouldn’t work for someone that’s a little less of an awkward git!!



So, there’s ALL the methods I tried, apart from one.

One method was enforced on me. The wife got out of bed in the middle of the night one evening, and put all my fags in the sink.

I was so annoyed in the morning, I went straight to the corner shop and bought a pack of 20!

Moral of the story, if you want to quit, you have to want to quit LOL!



Categories: Vaping


Virtual Smoking Lounge by Robert

I used to be a heavy smoker, now I'm not! I switched to ecigs back in 2011 and haven't looked back since. This website is strictly my own personal views on vaping.