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Your stop smoking plan in six steps

Planning your smoke stop

Stopping smoking is one of the hardest habits to change, yet it’ll give you the most benefits! We are rooting for you!

1. Set your quit date:

Look at your calendar to choose good date for you to quit. Set a date that gives you time to prepare. Set it for at a time when you’ll have the least temptations or stressful situations to face.

2. Identify your triggers:

What situations and triggers cause your cravings? Common triggers can include having a tea or coffee, driving, going out drinking or high-stress times. What are yours?

Keep a log of when you want a cigarette and what you're doing.

3. Beat your triggers:

It’s time to plan how you can avoid or overcome your triggers. Think about things you can do instead of smoking and try these out to see what works for you. Lynette filled her free time with a new craft activity. What could you do?
If you smoke in your car, make a stop-smoke playlist of you can sing along to! Keep a packet of gum or sugar-free boiled sweets to hand.

Katy placed post-it notes in her car to beat her triggers with the support of her family.

4. Get smart about smoking addiction:

Smoking is a physical addiction. Do some homework to learn about the effects that nicotine has on your brain. Talk to our advisors and coaches. Find out how nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) and other aids can help give you support to increase the chance of success. Consider the use of an e-cigarette to support your quit attempt; Lynette found this helpful. 

Explore further reading from the NHS on why smoking is addictive, and treatments to try.

5. Choose your quit smoking aid:

Now you've learnt more about the addiction and about the stop smoking aids that are available to you, it’s time to get along to your local Smoke Stop Service. Call our advisors or register and we’ll talk you through your options for support. If you have tried medication before you could try alternatives this time around.

The NHS Smokefree app is something other smokers benefit from. It shows you how much you've saved each day as well as exploring your motivations and cravings to quit. Recording her savings motivated Lynette to quit for good.

5. Tell someone, anyone, everyone!

Don’t feel lonely when starting this journey. Tell trusted friends, family and work colleagues. If they smoke too, ask them if they could try not to smoke around you. Speak to people that have quit smoking, they know what you are going through and can help motivate you with what you will achieve. Ex-smokers can be supportive listeners and cheer you on!

Family support was essential in both Lynette and Katy’s smoke-stop journeys.

6. End the relationship:

Clear out reminders of your smoking. Look round your home, car and workplace and chuck out everything that is smoking-related such as lighters and ashtrays. Get your car cleaned to rid the smell of smoking. Wash your clothes and bedding; have deep clean of your house, make your life smell fresh and clean with no hint of smokiness.

‘I am a non-smoker!’


Forget the words “I am trying to quit” … replace them with the words “I am a non-smoker”. This is you, now – believe it! Repeat these words to yourself, be certain to take hold of your smoke-free life. You are not trying to quit any more – you have quit. 

Three calls

If you haven't already, you may find the support of a LiveWell Coach beneficial. Please register or contact us to apply for coaching. One of our LiveWell Coaches recalls three phone calls with a client: Phone call one: the client made a commitment to stop smoking in their car. Phone call two: it was their home. Finally, during the third call, they were ready to go the whole hog.


You've got to believe that you can do it wholeheartedly. It's important that you do it for yourself, and that you have the self-belief that you can just do it.

How does this work?

The tailored approach LiveWell Dorset uses to come up with solutions to the things that are stopping us achieving our goals, is based upon work done by University College London developing the COM-B model of behaviour change. In this model, all behaviour is influenced by understanding a person’s capability to change, their opportunity to change and their motivation to change. By understanding which of these is the biggest barrier to change, we can tailor support accordingly. This model of behaviour change is at the centre of the support we offer, online and in person.

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