Become a Non-Smoker
Getting the right support - carefully-tailored to your needs, could greatly increase your chances of becoming free of cigarettes & tobacco.
Studies of smokers making an attempt to stop smoking unaided typically suggest that only 4-6 out of every 100 people succeed for at least 12 months.
So whilst it is possible to become a non-smoker on your own, you may feel drawn to consider some sort of personalised support programme to help improve your chances of success.
Living a life that’s completely free of cigarettes is a highly desirable goal for nearly all smokers.
However, particularly if you are a long-time smoker… your relationship with nicotine & tobacco may feel somewhat complex and contradictory…
You could be 100% certain that the healthiest option is to stop immediately… And yet, you may also have a ‘little voice’ inside saying that “your smoking is just a habit”, something that you can stop at any time if you decide to…
Or perhaps part of you says “let's have one quick puff - it won’t do any harm”…
Whilst another part of you knows full well that once you start… one puff is likely to lead to another… and another…
There are probably a number of enjoyable situations that you strongly associate with smoking… However, on other occasions you could well experience your smoking as being something that greatly takes away from your quality of life, with no redeeming features at all…
It may be that you feel each puff of your cigarette helps you to relax.
And yet, you may also know that one of the early benefits of becoming a non-smoker is that you are likely to experience much lower levels of stress than if you had been facing the same situations as a smoker…
It’s tempting to think that we make most of our decisions in a thoroughly rational way. Although, how often do we sense that there are other forces working inside us that are more strongly influencing things?
As well as our conscious rational mind (the part of us that would like to believe it’s always in charge), we also have a far stronger inner mind that only really comes to the fore now and again - especially when we are stressed and/or emotional.
Our inner mind undertakes numerous jobs behind the scenes. In particular, it oversees all of our body’s essential processes - such as breathing and digestion; it’s home to our emotions, desire & imagination; and it’s the place where our memories, habits, beliefs & values are stored for future use.
To get a sense of the dynamic between our conscious rational mind and our inner/emotional mind - when they are pulling in different directions…
Imagine the scene… a pet-owner is out for a walk with their large, strong and usually obedient dog. Then all of a sudden a bird, cat or another dog comes into view… and it takes all of the dog-owner’s strength and concentration to keep charge of the situation - for now at least. However, on another day the owner might not be able to completely control their dog’s actions.
Coping with these ‘battles of will’ is likely to be exhausting for the dog-owner and not something they could easily face more than once a day.
And yet, that’s what we are asking our conscious mind (the ‘pet-owner’) to do when we aim to keep/regain control of our inner mind (their ‘dog’) through willpower alone. For short periods we may be able to keep control in this way, but over the long-term it’s almost guaranteed we will have a momentary lapse at some point.
This suggests that…
A ‘stop smoking’ attempt that relies purely on your willpower… could be somewhat exhausting to implement and may be more susceptible to lapses than other approaches available to you.
A national poll asked people who had successfully become non-smokers:-
“Q. What strategies or methods for quitting smoking were the most effective for you?”
Even though more than one response was allowed, only 8% indicated that “Willpower” (or a closely-related strategy) was one of the most effective methods in helping them becoming free of tobacco.
In contrast, 48% indicated that “Decided it was time” (or a closely-related strategy) was a highly effective method for stopping smoking.
It’s clear that…
Many of the individuals who had been successful in their stop smoking efforts made a distinction between “deciding it was time to stop” and “using willpower”.
When we think willpower will be the most important method in any endeavour, perhaps it implies that we expect there will be significant difficulties/resistance either from within (our emotional mind) or externally (other people/our environment).
And in contrast, when "we decide that now is the time to take action" (without willpower seeming quite so important), it's likely to mean we have a strong sense that both our rational and inner minds are committed to working together as a team to achieve our goal. In addition, it may indicate that we feel the circumstances in our life are conducive to us succeeding in our aim as well.
Making this sort of unified decision seems key in maximising our chances of successfully achieving any life change… and could be critical in you becoming free of cigarettes & nicotine long-term.
Our ‘pet-owner & dog’ metaphor also suggests (somewhat accurately) that our inner mind doesn’t respond to the same logic or way of communicating that is best for our conscious rational mind.
So in order to maximise our chances of success we need to find a way of encouraging our inner/emotional mind to “buy into” whatever it is we wish for consciously (in this case being a non-smoker), as well as ensuring that our rational mind understands and is fully committed to the chosen way forward.
If you've tried to stop your use of cigarettes/tobacco through any of the following approaches:-
- “cold turkey”;
- via a combination of Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT), medication & counselling; or
- through the use of e-cigarettes.
And they’ve brought you no real success…
You may feel that now is the time for you to find out how effective a tailored stop-smoking hypnotherapy programme can be in supporting you to become free of nicotine and tobacco.
Some of the ‘stop-smoking’ campaigns that appear in the media emphasise the likely harmful effects to long-term health of being a smoker. Whilst these shock tactics often get our attention, they may not be as effective in encouraging a smoker’s emotional mind to “get onboard” with the idea of becoming a non-smoker.
Our inner minds tend to be particularly responsive to positively-expressed ideas, and are more inclined to discount, (or be confused by), negatively-worded reasons for change. However, comparing two options, one positive and one much less so, can be an even more effective way of motivating the inner mind.
When it comes to our emotional mind - survival, desire, pleasure and relief are just some of its 'common currencies' and often the only time-frame that it takes into account is the immediate future.
Balancing short-term urges against longer-term considerations is not one of our emotional mind’s strengths.
However, there is at least one very important exception to this…
If a desired action is deemed to threaten our core identity or ‘sense of self’ then it is much less likely to happen.
Why? Because our inner mind is the guardian of our overall safety - both physical and psychological.
Q. So how important is it to view yourself as a ‘non-smoker’ when you want to become free of cigarettes long-term?
The answer seems to be… “very important”.
In one study, 85% of ex-smokers, who had stopped smoking for 2 years or more, considered themselves to be ‘non-smokers’ with only 15% retaining their previous ‘smoker’ self-label.
Each of us has a number of ‘self-labels’ in different domains that contribute to our overall identity. For instance, in relation to food consumption our self-label might be one of:- meat-eater, pescatarian or vegan. And each of these self-labels will have a number of personal values strongly linked to them, that either powerfully drive or inhibit our thoughts, feelings & actions in specific circumstances.
Explicitly revealing these values & self-labels and then working with them can be highly effective in supporting any desired personal change. In particular, strengthening those ‘self-label’ values that are likely to inhibit short-term urges such as “I’d really like to light up a cigarette” could be a very helpful approach to use as part of your overall ‘stop smoking’ strategy.
Q. What are some of the other key factors that can potentially improve your chances of becoming free of nicotine & tobacco long-term?
[Please Note: Any quoted performance figures below, whether drawn from research studies or from other sources, are for general information purposes only.]
Q. Is it better to attend one or multiple ‘stop smoking’ support sessions?
Research suggests that having a number of ‘stop smoking’ sessions (starting before the proposed stop date and continuing for a period afterwards) could pay dividends for at least the first 12 months after stopping.
One study indicated that having multiple sessions (rather than one session) could provide a 35% improvement to an individual’s chances of remaining a non-smoker for a minimum of a year.
Q. Should I gradually reduce my smoking or stop abruptly? There is evidence to support the clear advantage of stopping smoking in one step rather than gradually reducing consumption and then stopping.
An article reporting on this specific area suggests that on average a smoker abruptly stopping smoking could be at least 40% more likely to remain a non-smoker after 6 months than if they had reduced over a few weeks prior to the beginning of their ‘stop smoking’ attempt.
Q. How much could it help me to stop smoking if my family & social circle are already non-smokers, or stop at the same time as me?
According to Public Health England (PHE), the chances of a person becoming free of smoking goes up:
- 25% when a sibling stops;
- 34% when a co-worker quits;
- 35% when a friend stops;
- 67% when a spouse quits;
Q. I seldom drink coffee, and I rarely have a glass of wine/beer/whisky - will that assist me in becoming a non-smoker?
For many smokers, drinking coffee and consuming alcohol are both closely associated with lighting up a cigarette.
So yes, it’s likely that by keeping your consumption relatively low you will be increasing your chances of success.
And if you are a heavy drinker of coffee or alcohol, you may find it helpful to significantly reduce the quantity you are consuming prior to stopping smoking.
You are likely to live longer and have a better quality of life… the sooner you stop smoking for good.
A regularly-cited piece of research suggests that stopping your smoking at age 40 may well gain you about 9 years of life expectancy.
Once you have become a non-smoker, you are likely to experience a wide range of additional health benefits:-
|Time Since Stopping||Specific Health Benefit|
|20 minutes||Pulse returns to normal.|
|8 hours||Nicotine and Carbon Monoxide levels in blood reduce by more than 50%.|
Oxygen levels return to normal - which can reduce tiredness and the likelihood of headaches.
|48 hours||Carbon Monoxide eliminated from the body.|
Lungs start to clear out mucus and other smoking debris.
All traces of Nicotine are removed from the body.
The ability to taste and smell is improved.
|72 hours||Breathing becomes easier.|
Bronchial tubes begin to relax and energy levels increase.
|Time Since Stopping||Specific Health Benefit|
|1 month||Physical appearance improves, including:- skin gains a healthier-looking colour and becomes smoother.|
|3 months||Circulation improves - which makes all physical activity much easier.|
|3-9 months||Coughing and wheezing is reduced.|
|1 year||Risk of heart disease is about half that of a similar person who is still smoking.|
|Time Since Stopping||Specific Health Benefit|
|10 years||Risk of lung cancer falls to half that of a smoker.|
|15 years||Risk of a heart attack falls to the same level as someone who has never been a smoker.|
|Immune System||Your immune system will get a boost and you’ll find it easier to resist colds and flu.|
|Stress Levels||After a few weeks your stress levels are likely to be noticeably lower.|
|Sexual Performance||Once your blood flow improves it may lead to better sex. Males can get better erections and females may find they become aroused more easily.|
|Starting a Family||If you are looking to start a family, things could become somewhat easier. Men’s sperm can be more potent and the lining of a woman’s womb can be improved.|
|Dental Health||Ex-smokers tend to have whiter teeth and sweeter breath. Plus, they also reduce their chances of getting gum disease and of losing their teeth prematurely.|
The clear health benefits linked to being a non-smoker are not the only justifications given by smokers for wanting to be free of cigarettes & tobacco. Here are some of the most common reasons given for stopping smoking - of course yours may be somewhat different:-
|Health & Wellbeing||Respond to Current health issues.|
Improve future health & live longer. (Becoming a non-smoker reduces the risk of 50 different illnesses and conditions).
Pregnancy-related health benefits.
Increased confidence in personal appearance & impact on others - whether at work, at social events or in family/personal situations. |
Especially:- healthier-looking skin, whiter teeth, sweeter breath, attractive-looking (non-stained) fingers and fresh-smelling hair & clothes.
|Kids & Family||Safeguard health of children & other family members (no more passive smoking).|
Set a good example to children & avoid encouraging them to start smoking cigarettes. “Do as I do” is usually more effective than “Do as I say”.
|Experience of Self||“Get back in control of my life - stop nicotine controlling me”.|
Simply a strong urge to be free of nicotine (or at least little or no desire to smoke).
Want more energy again - smoking can lead to lethargy.
|Work & Social Life||Find being at work and in meetings easier.|
Want to be more considerate of others in social situations (avoid creating second-hand smoke).
Travelling long-distance will be more relaxing.
|Financial||Want to spend money on other things - tobacco/cigarettes cost too much.|
Some of the most common reasons given by smokers for first starting to smoke are:-
“to look cool or sophisticated ”, “to rebel”, “to be accepted”, “to show my independence”, “it made me feel confident”, “curiosity”, “my family and friends all smoked”.
And the reasons that smokers give for carrying on smoking include…
|Performance||Helps with concentration.|
It’s a social prop.
It relieves boredom.|
Helps deal with stress.
|Pleasure||“I can enjoy relaxing, eating, & drinking more”.|
|Relationship||It’s a friend.|
|Habit or Addiction||“It’s something to do with my hands”.|
It’s a long-standing habit.
“I’ve got an addictive personality”.
“I’m a nicotine addict”.
|Fears & Expectations||Fear of another ‘stop smoking’ failure.|
“I think it will be too hard for me to cope with the withdrawal symptoms & cravings I'll face after I've stopped”.
“Life will be dull and no fun as a non-smoker - I will be giving up too much”.
Concerned about gaining weight.
Scared of the unknown - living life free of tobacco and nicotine.
Becoming a non-smoker… will be the most natural step forward for you to take in life…
Once you realise that there is…
Nothing[*] of value that needs to be given up.
Nothing will be missing from your life when you are free of tobacco.
[* What you currently think you are getting from smoking and what you are actually getting from your cigarettes, are likely to be two very different things. The main reason for this is that nicotine creates various illusions that seem to be designed to keep it’s position in your life. Quite simply - it doesn’t play fair!]
Q. Is it more accurate to view my smoking as an unhealthy habit or as some form of addiction?
Whilst you may view your smoking as a pretty straightforward habit, others may feel that their smoking behaviour is a little more complex than that - even if it’s nowhere near being an all-encompassing addiction.
Nevertheless, understanding some of the key factors that contribute to people developing & recovering from addictive behaviour could be helpful in guiding your mental preparation for a successful ‘stop smoking’ effort…
In recent years, the concept of ‘addiction’ has been extended to cover repetitive self-destructive behaviour occurring with or without a chemically-active substance at its core. Gambling and video/computer game addiction are two relatively well-known examples where a drug/physical substance is not involved.
Leading researchers in this area have provided the following definition of ‘addiction’, that reflects its new wider scope:-
“Addiction is an ingrained habit that undermines your health, your work, your relationships [and] your self-respect…”
As our understanding of addiction (essentially ‘destructive habitual behaviour’) has improved, it has led many experts to question whether it is a substance's chemical properties that are the most significant part of a drug-related addictive experience or if there are other factors that are more important.
Increasingly, research is suggesting that these other factors have a much greater influence than the substance itself. And the importance of this for you - a smoker wanting to be free of tobacco and nicotine, is the way that you experience withdrawal symptoms and cravings during a ‘stop smoking’ attempt is likely to be more psychological, variable and controllable in nature than you may currently imagine will be the case.
Once you have revised your expectations and prepared your mind appropriately…
Your experience of the initial few days after stopping smoking could well be far less demanding than you previously anticipated.
Q. What are the main factors that tend to be involved in destructive habitual behaviour being established and maintained?
The possibility of destructive habitual behaviour starting often occurs when a person regularly feels there is something significant missing from their life. Or alternatively, the person may feel overwhelmed by one or more aspects of their current experience and they can’t get back in control using the resources[**] that are immediately available to them.
[** Both inner resources (mind & body) and external resources (the people/relationships they have in their life and the home, work & leisure environments in which they spend their time).]
This possible outcome becomes much more probable for individuals that don’t have faith that their circumstances/resources will change over time, and also for people that have considerable difficulty in balancing their impulses & short-term desires with what is likely to be best for them longer-term.
What keeps someone unhealthily dependent on a particular experience (whether this is linked to a substance, person or activity) is that they believe it gives them something that they cannot get anywhere else. The something they receive is largely illusory and usually only available for a short time - it doesn’t make a permanent and positive difference to the person’s life. In fact, the bulk of the ‘price paid’ for the immediate gratification/relief they receive only becomes apparent over time and is usually far greater than the total ‘gains’ the person gets from the destructive habitual behaviour/activity.
Q. What do people do to stop their destructive habitual behaviour?
“The key to… [stopping] … is to mobilise the necessary motivation, values, skills, and environmental supports” 
By being motivated to become more self-aware, improve their life coping skills, and selectively or comprehensively change their various environments as needed, a person can outgrow their self-destructive habitual behaviour/s.
If you're still thinking that addiction involving a drug is the result of oft-repeated exposure to a powerful chemical and that other factors are nowhere near as important, then the results of a famous real-world experiment may assist you in seeing that this is unlikely to be the case:-
At the end of the Vietnam War about 20% of U.S. soldiers were addicted to heroin.
And yet, within a year of returning home to their families,
95% of those addicts had stopped.
The only soldiers who did not stop their heroin addiction were those who had been regular users prior to the war, or who had unresolved issues relating to their unstable childhoods.
This strongly suggests that addiction involving a substance and heavy habitual usage are both primarily a product of a person's environment, their relationships and the workings of their mind, as opposed to the substance's chemical properties in isolation.
Working Together to Help You Stop Smoking for Good
Below is an outline of the ‘stop smoking’ hypnotherapy programme that we will start to tailor to your precise needs when we have our initial consultation.
You've probably tasted the disappointment of a number of failed ‘stop smoking’ attempts - so aren't you ready for a truly comprehensive approach to helping you gain your freedom from cigarettes & tobacco?
- Is Now The Time to Stop?
- At our initial consultation we will discuss whether the time seems right for you to begin your ‘stop smoking’ effort.
- If now does not seem to be the right time for you to begin a ‘stop smoking’ programme, we can agree to have a number of ‘create the conditions’ sessions aimed at assisting you reach that point of readiness.
- If you book a combined consultation & hypnotherapy appointment, you will benefit from a powerful health & wellbeing hypnotherapy session prior to making a decision about your ‘stop smoking’ programme.
- Preparing to Stop (Two 90-Minute Sessions | As a Smoker)
In order to succeed in becoming a non-smoker and stop smoking for good it’s important that you prepare thoroughly and have a well-thought-out plan to support and guide you. Doing this will help you to be as relaxed as possible about moving forward.
The ‘stop smoking’ hypnotherapy programme outlined below will be tailored to your precise needs, so you can be sure that everything is being done to help you achieve your goal of becoming a non-smoker.
Setting a Stop Date
At the beginning of our first 'preparing to stop' session together, you will be asked to commit to a ‘stop smoking’ date two weeks ahead.
This will help focus your mind on the important life change you are about to make and ensure that behind the scenes all of your inner resources are being made ready to support you in reaching your goal.
Your Relationship with Tobacco
You will be asked a wide range of questions to provide us with a thorough understanding of your unique relationship with tobacco:-
- Smoking History
When did you first start to smoke?
What were your reasons for becoming a smoker?
How has your cigarettes per day figure changed over time?
What do you think now about your decision to start smoking?
How do you feel about your younger self becoming a smoker?…
- Previous Stop Smoking Attempts
How many serious stop smoking attempts have you made?
For each one:
What method did you use? (i.e. “cold turkey”, nicotine patches etc).
For how long were you a non-smoker?
Did you have any lapses (one puff/cigarette) that didn't lead to a complete relapse?
If yes, what caused those lapses?
What caused the lapse that led to you smoking again?…
- Current Smoking Behaviour
Your smoking behaviour is likely to be somewhat different for a typical work day compared to an average leisure/weekend day.
For work and leisure days separately:
When do you tend to wake up?
For each cigarette you have:
When in the day do you smoke the cigarette?
How important is it on a scale of 1-5?
What were you thinking, feeling and doing: Before you lit up? While you smoked? After you stubbed it out?…
- Situations Where You Smoke Less
What are the situations where you find yourself smoking less or not at all? (In a work meeting, being around children etc).
For each of them:
Is this through personal choice or because of social, work or legal restrictions/constraints?
What are you thinking, feeling and doing when you are in this situation?
- When and Where You Smoke More
What are the situations where you find your smoking increases or you chain-smoke? (After an argument with your partner, work stress, at a party etc).
For each of them:
What are you thinking, feeling and doing when you are in this situation?
How important is a cigarette in this situation on a scale of 1-5?…
- Your Reasons For Wanting to Stop
In order to be free of tobacco you will need a healthy number of compelling and strongly-held reasons for wanting to stop.
And to make it possible for a lasting shift in your behaviour (to become free of tobacco) and in your self-label (to being a non-smoker), at least one of these reasons must have a strong emotional quality attached to it, so that the power of your inner mind (your subconscious) can be successfully harnessed.
It’s that uniquely powerful reason above all others that we will focus on finding and making full use of in our sessions.
Remember that if you smoke about 20 cigarettes during each day (a period of 16 hours) and no cigarettes whilst you are asleep (a period of 8 hours), then there is a part of your subconscious that is already showing you how effective it is at keeping you free from tobacco.
And from one perspective, you are already about a 1/3* of the way along the road (8 hours out of 24 hours) to being a non-smoker. All we need to do is harness the power of that part of your subconscious during the day and the result you wish for is likely to be achieved.
[*In fact if you add up all the time you are not smoking during the day to the hours of sleep you get, you will find that you are substantially closer to being a non-smoker than you probably feel most of the time.]
- Why You Still Smoke
Even though you are sure that you want to stop smoking, you will probably have a number of 'oft-repeated' reasons that you say to yourself about why you have remained a smoker up until now.
Perhaps you believe that smoking helps to relieve your boredom, reduces your feelings of stress, or that you need it as a social prop.
Whatever your stated reasons, there are people very much like you who don't use a cigarette to handle these sorts of situations and negative emotions.
Unfortunately, some of those people habitually use alternative substances (such as food and alcohol) to block out their feelings and inhibit their concerns about certain events.
Thankfully there are other individuals who have found much healthier ways of coping with stressful situations and troublesome emotions.
Part of our work together will be to explore how you can make healthy productive choices in similar circumstances.
There really is no need for you to replace nicotine with food, drink or any other substance.
And there will almost certainly be specific situations where your body seems to just pick up a cigarette and light it without any conscious decision or psychological urge being involved - it's just a conditioned physical habit that's developed over time.
Replacing this with an alternative, far healthier, ‘doing something else with my hands’ habit, is usually the most productive approach.
If you have been able to switch your commuter route when you moved home or changed jobs then you have the capacity to change your purely physical smoking-related habits to something else just as easily and reliably.
- Concerns You Have About Stopping
We will work to reassure your rational and emotional minds about any concerns you have about how no longer smoking may affect you.
One of the most common concerns is the possibility of weight gain. For most people, any increase in weight that is directly down to the change in their metabolism from no longer smoking is likely to be very modest and a slight increase in exercise or minor adjustment to your eating habits will probably eradicate this within a few weeks.
However, if the way the ex-smoker deals with negative emotions and stressful events is still based on using or consuming an external substance, then weight gain is a distinct possibility. So as we touched on earlier, it is essential that we work to establish healthy ways of you responding to stress and negative emotions that draw purely on your inner resources.
- Your Fears About Continuing
Fleshing out your fears about staying a smoker can help counteract any concerns you have about becoming free of tobacco.
- Your Key Relationships & Environments - Pro-Smoking or Anti-Smoking?
Your family, friends and work colleagues can be absolutely key in supporting your transition from smoker to non-smoker. However, there may be a number of smokers that you could come into contact with who may not be quite so supportive. If that’s the case it's important that you think about how you want to deal with meeting them, especially during the first weeks of being a non-smoker.
During the week before your stop smoking date, it's best to let the people you know that you’re about to become a non-smoker and what, if anything, they can do to help.
For instance, if anyone in your household smokes, you may want to ask them to refrain from smoking in the common areas of your home until you've got through the first few weeks of being a non-smoker.
For the week following each ‘Preparing to Stop’ session you will be asked to keep a Daily Log of the cigarettes you smoke. Against each entry you will provide a little extra information including whether you consider it just a ‘regular’ cigarette that you have at that time of the day or whether it's an ‘extra’ one that you are having in response to an emotion or situation.
‘No Need For a Cigarette’ Strategies
In our two sessions we will work on developing ‘No Need For a Cigarette’ strategies for the stressful situations and negative emotions that you've indicated usually lead to you smoking a number of ‘extra’ cigarettes.
By employing ‘visualisation’ and other powerful techniques we will ensure that you thoroughly practice and strengthen these strategies within of each of our preparatory sessions. And then throughout the following week, you will be able to undertake some valuable ‘real-world’ practice, whenever you feel the urge to have an ‘extra’ cigarette.
Once you've completed each ‘real-world’ practice you'll jot down the results in your daily log. By you doing this we can confirm where the methods are working well and also discover if there are any situations or emotions where the approach needs to be strengthened or amended.
Reframing Your ‘Nicotine’ Experience
In order to become a non-smoker you need to make sure that you have taken back any ‘power’ that you are currently letting nicotine and tobacco have over you.
To help in this process, you are provided with some short phrases to say silently to yourself with feeling and conviction each time you are about to light up a cigarette over the next 2 weeks.
Weakening and Replacing Your Physical Habits
Another important step for you to take is to weaken the purely physical aspect of your smoking habit and to start replacing it with a new habit that is easy to master and completely harmless.
To do this you are asked to take a number of slow deep breaths and leisurely sips of water before you light up each 'regular' cigarette and then to continue doing this in-between each subsequent puff.
In addition, you will aim to gradually increase the number of deep breaths and sips of water you have immediately before you light up your first cigarette of the day.
Envisage Life as a Non-Smoker
You will be given a number of carefully-crafted hypnotic suggestions that will help you to vividly envisage and mentally prepare for life as a non-smoker.
2nd Week Actions
During the second week you will be asked to smoke a cigarette brand that you strongly dislike so that any distant memory you have of the original appeal of smoking is even less accessible to your conscious mind.
And on, or before, your stop date you will dispose of all your smoking paraphernalia for good - with the exception of an unopened pack of your favourite brand which you will bring to our ‘Become a Non-Smoker’ session.
- Smoking History
- In order to succeed in becoming a non-smoker and stop smoking for good it’s important that you prepare thoroughly and have a well-thought-out plan to support and guide you. Doing this will help you to be as relaxed as possible about moving forward.
- Become a Non-Smoker (A Single 90-Minute Session)
Today, before we meet, you will have your last cigarette, and then during our session you will commit to being a non-smoker from that moment forward.
Much of the session is about reinforcing your decision, using the knowledge and insight we've gained in the previous 2 weeks and preparing you for a life free from tobacco and nicotine.
In particular we revisit and strengthen all your ‘No Need For a Cigarette’ strategies which are now combined with the slow deep breathing and drinking water method.
At the end of the session you will scrunch up your unopened cigarette pack and ceremoniously drop it into the bin.
- Today, before we meet, you will have your last cigarette, and then during our session you will commit to being a non-smoker from that moment forward.
- Consolidate Your Life of Freedom (One 90-Minute Session)
- One follow-up session is included within your ‘stop smoking’ programme and typically this is arranged for 3-4 weeks after you become a non-smoker. This session aims to help strengthen our original work wherever this is necessary and to assist you deal with any unexpected consequences of you becoming a non-smoker.
- The Danger of ‘Just One Cigarette’
Studies indicate that in 95% of cases where an ex-smoker has lapsed, usually smoking just one cigarette, this will lead to a full-scale relapse within a matter of days or weeks.
In the unlikely event that you ever start to imagine smoking ‘just one cigarette’ again or find yourself lapsing, then make sure that you contact Steve as soon as possible in order to arrange further hypnotherapy sessions to address the issue. Preventing a lapse is always better than needing to recover from a full-scale relapse.
- Studies indicate that in 95% of cases where an ex-smoker has lapsed, usually smoking just one cigarette, this will lead to a full-scale relapse within a matter of days or weeks.
We no longer offer a stand-alone 'Stop Smoking' Hypnotherapy Programme.
: Gallup’s 2013 “US Consumption Habits” poll.
: Vangeli, E., Stapleton, J. and West, R. “Residual attraction to smoking and smoker identity following smoking cessation”, Nicotine & Tobacco Research, 12(8), 865-869.
: Zhu, S. et al. “Telephone Counselling for Smoking Cessation: Effects of Single-Session and Multiple-Session Interventions”, Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, Feb 1996, 64(1), 202-211.
: Lindson-Hawley, N. et al. “Gradual Versus Abrupt Smoking Cessation”, Annals of Internal Medicine, 2016, 164(9), 585-592.
: "Health Matters: smoking and quitting in England", Public Health England Guidance Note, Sep 2015. Published on gov.uk website.
: "Heavy coffee consumption increases death rates in under-55s, study suggests", Jebelli, J., 15 Aug 2013. Published on the guardian.com website.
: Cohn, A., Brandon, T., Armeli, S., et al. “Real-time patterns of smoking and alcohol use: an observational protocol of risky-drinking smokers”, BMJ Open 2015;4:e007046.
: Doll, R. et al. “Mortality in relation to smoking: 40 years' observations on male British doctors.” British Medical Journal, (BMJ 1994;309;901-911).
: Multiple Sources: Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) Fact Sheets, Smokefree NHS website and Livewell NHS website.
: Peele, S., Brodsky, A. and Arnold, M. “The Truth About Addiction and Recovery”, (1992), Simon & Schuster.
: Details drawn from:- Hari, J. “Chasing The Scream”, (2015), Bloomsbury.
As with all forms of therapy - the precise results achieved may vary from person to person.