For many, October signals Stoptober, a chance to quit smoking for the whole month – if not for good. We all know the health hazards that smoking causes, but once addicted, it's an uphill battle to break the habit. To mark Stoptober, we challenged two women to give up smoking and share their experience with us. From trying electronic cigarettes or vapes, to undergoing a course of hypnotherapy, discover how our willing volunteers get on in their weekly blogs.
Arianna Salenius, 23, lives in London where she works as an account manager. She has been a smoker for seven years and is starting Stoptober by substituting cigarettes for a vape. But will she be able to put down the vape too by the end of the month?
The end of October has arrived and the 31 day challenge has come to an end!
Surprisingly, I wasn’t frantically waiting for the 1st November to come like I had first anticipated. This may be partly due to me having a few little smoking blips along the way… However, I think this is also because my view on smoking has now completely changed. Cigarettes are no longer a vital part of my routine (it makes me feel a bit sad that cigarettes ever were!) and for that reason alone, Stoptober has helped my perspective on smoking hugely.
Truthfully, I am smoking occasionally now, but I can go without and now that I’m aware of that, it’s much easier to cut down and miss out the cigarettes I would have usually had pre-October. No more pre-work, 11am, 4pm, post work etc. etc. and this something I really wanted to achieve. I was fed up with feeling tied to a habitual pattern of smoking because it was ‘time’ to, rather than because I actually wanted one.
There are so many important reasons to quit smoking, one predominantly being the huge risk of disease attached to it. But as well as that, your skin clears up, your lungs feel clearer (and by that I mean running/climbing stairs/going to the gym without feeling abnormally breathless), you spend less money on tobacco, your clothes don’t smell, YOU don’t smell and everything tastes so much better.
I’ve now experienced how good it feels to not be a smoker and how easy it is to break the habits you so often think are unbreakable! Although Stoptober has finished, this is something I’m determined to kick for good and I’m so glad I took part.
Hannah Gee, 33, lives in Surrey and works in London as an account manager. Hannah has smoked for 20 years and is hoping to quit for good, with the help of a hypnotherapist.
My final week and I am thrilled to say I’m still a non-smoker. I can hardly believe it! And what’s more surprising is that I’ve had a very busy week with work and a fairly busy social calendar and even still, I’ve managed to not give in. What has surprised me the most however is the fact that I rarely think about smoking, and when I do, it is only for a brief moment and the thought has gone, even with a glass of wine in my hand.
I’ve really noticed a difference in my fitness and now enjoy running. Before I would only manage 2.5k before I had to stop to catch my breath! My skin looks much better and I feel so much healthier, which I love!
I’m so pleased that I took the Stoptober challenge, and with a little help from the Harley Street Stop Smoking Clinic, I am now a fully fledged non-smoker….and this time, I know it’ll last!
Feeling inspired to break the habit too? Even though it's no longer Stoptober, it's not too late. Check out our Stoptober infographic which reveals all the ways it can benefit your health - and your wallet.
For more information about hypnotherapy and how it can help to quit smoking visit www.harleystreetstopsmokingclinic.com.