What’s your motivation for quitting smoking
Many people say that smoking gives them relief from stress or boredom, or that it helps them to relax or concentrate. In fact what is happening is that smokers experience discomfort if they don’t smoke (the addiction) and when they smoke they get relief from the discomfort. You may therefore interpret feelings of relaxing as a positive experience, when what is really going on is you are returning to the state you were in before you ever started smoking. However the short term benefits from smoking feel real even if they aren’t.
Given that smoking is an addiction, it really helps if you are clear about why you want to quit in order to counter the feelings that motivate you to keep smoking. Different people have different motivations. Also people are motivated in different ways. Some people find that focussing on the negative consequences of smoking is their motivation, while others find focussing on the benefits of quitting more helpful.
Take some time to read through the two sections below and see which (if any) of the negative consequences of smoking or the positive benefits of quitting motivates you to quit. It may that you have an altogether different reason for quitting that we haven’t discussed – and that’s fine too.
We haven’t exaggerated any of the consequences of smoking in order to pressurise you. To be honest, we don’t need to – the facts are bad enough. You already know that smoking is bad for your health, but reading about what smoking potentially does to your body may help to focus you, and clarify your motivation.
We have also included additional information relevant for people with HIV. If you have HIV, you may find that some of the information here is new to you, as the additional negative consequences of smoking when you have HIV are rarely discussed.
However, the great thing about quitting is that you can leave all the negative stuff behind you and just look forward to the benefits that quitting brings.
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