Staying smoke-free can be tough, but maintaining a healthy mind and body can help make it easier. Here are some good habits to pick up that can help you stay healthy, positive, and motivated.

1. Count the Days Since You Quit Smoking

Keep your spirits and motivation up: count the days you’ve stayed smoke-free to constantly remind yourself of how far you’ve come.

Hang a calendar on your bedroom wall (or somewhere you’ll see it every day). At the end of each smoke-free day, put a cross on the calendar to mark your achievement.

Besides giving a sense of satisfaction, crossing the days can also help you keep track of the progress you’ve made, giving you more motivation to keep ongoing and avoid a smoking relapse.

Related: Build Healthy Habits that Stick

2. Celebrate the Milestones and Reward Yourself for Quitting Smoking

Make it a habit to reward yourself when you reach significant milestones in your quit journey — every smoke-free week and month, and eventually, your first smoke-free year.

For instance, why not buy yourself a small treat each week you go without touching a cigarette? It could be your favourite sports magazine, or a meal with loved ones at your favourite makan spot. You deserve a pat on the back for making it this far!

Related: Loving and Accepting Yourself

3. Pamper Yourself to Fight Any Lingering Urges to Smoke

De-stress or take your mind off residual cravings by finding time to relax and pamper yourself.

Schedule regular sessions to relax, be it having a massage or learning yoga. Here’s a tip: try the free yoga classes offered by the Health Promotion Board’s Sunrise in the City programme. What better way to start your day than with exercise to boost your energy and mood?

Related: Relaxation—Good For Your Mind

4. Share Stories with Ex-Smokers and Inspire Others to Stop Smoking

Join a community like the I QUIT Club on Facebook, and read or exchange quit stories with other ex-smokers. By sharing your struggles and successes, you might even inspire others to quit smoking!

Related: No One Stands Alone, No One Walks Alone

5. Eat Healthy Food to Avoid Triggering An Urge to Smoke

Eating healthy is important when you’re trying to stay smoke-free. Sugary or high-fat foods can make you feel sluggish, which might make you crave for a cigarette to stay awake.

Not used to eating healthy? Start small: eat fewer fried foods (e.g. choose chicken chop over chicken cutlet), have fruit after lunch, and go for lighter hawker fare like sliced fish noodles or yong tau foo (without the fried items).

Related: Men's Health Tips 2019: Are You Man Enough?

6. Catch Enough Zzzs

Lack of sleep can make you feel tired and irritable, and you might be more likely to crave for a cigarette. Make it a habit to get seven to nine hours of sleep each night, so you’re better rested and equipped to defeat any remaining urges.

Related: The Importance of Sleep

7. Spend Time with Loved Ones

Strong social support is important to help you stay smoke-free. Make spending quality time with loved ones a habit: block out time each week for your family and friends.

These hangouts don’t have to be fancy — think a simple meal and chit-chat at the coffee shop, kite-flying at Marina Barrage, or joining an exercise class together.

So, build some of these habits into your life so you stay healthy, positive, and smoke-free!

Resources for Quitting

Join the I Quit Programme and remain smoke free for 28 days and you are 5 times more likely to quit smoking. You can nominate your loved ones as a supporter when you sign up for the programme. Validate your smoke-free status and redeem a HPB eVoucher* worth $50 at the 28th day milestone. Keep going and you'll also receive eVouchers* worth $30 and $20 at the 3rd month and 6th month milestone respectively!

*Terms and conditions apply. 

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