The smoker must first decide to quit smoking. The commitment to quit must come from the smoker. As a family member, you can certainly provide support and encouragement. You cannot do it for them. A family member assisting someone in quitting must first of all understand that smoking is a powerful addiction and quitting can be hard. Smokers have their own reasons for smoking that may include: coping with stress, relaxation and boredom.
The quitting process also means that the person who smokes must change their thoughts and dependency on smoking. This may be a very challenging experience for many people when they attempt to quit smoking. Yet, it is also the most rewarding experience when one quits. Quitting smoking is a very individualized process. Each smoker has to find their own time to quit, work through it in their own way, and at their own speed. Every “quit” is different.
Quitting does not happen in one step – smokers usually move through five stages:
- not thinking about quitting
- thinking about quitting but not ready to quit
- getting ready to quit
- remaining a non-smoker
Some smokers try many times and shift back and forth between stages.