When you’re behind the wheel of a truck for hours at a time, smoking offers a way to de-stress. But that doesn’t mean you want to keep doing it.
You know it’s bad for your health and you know smoking increases the risk of being involved in an accident. But deciding you want to quit smoking is one thing. Having the motivation to make it last is another.
If you drive a truck and want to quit smoking, here are four tips to help give up and keep stress levels to a minimum.
1 Make a plan
Saying you’ll quit tomorrow is tempting, but it’s not going to help you reach your goal. Set a date that you plan to quit, and stick with it. Choose a date in a couple of weeks from now and have it imprinted in your mind. Don’t try to stop or slow down before then, just tell yourself that’s going to be your first day as a non-smoker. Also, think about back-up – patches, gum, lozenges and exercise can all help reduce cravings.
2 Avoid potential triggers
Certain things in your life will act as a trigger for you to spark up. It might be seeing a cigarette packet, being with friends who smoke, or the taste of a particular drink. Whatever your trigger, eliminating it is going to be a great help. Start by cleaning out your truck’s cab. The smell of cigarette smoke can linger, and if you can’t see an ashtray full of butts, a lighter or loose tobacco the urge to light up may be reduced.
3 Recruit a support partner
Chances are, the non-smokers round you will be as keen for you to quit as you are. Find someone who can help you stick to your goal. As you’ll be on the road, you need someone who’s easy to contact by phone or video chat. A chat with a support partner can really help as you go through the highs and lows of stopping smoking. Find someone who’ll be on-hand when the going gets tough and it’ll be easier to stay strong.
4 Go easy on yourself
If you have a quick cig after your quit date, don’t be too hard on yourself. Everyone makes mistakes and your urge to smoke isn’t going to disappear overnight. Nicotine cravings are most intense up to ten days after quitting. If you do have a sneaky cigarette, don’t give up on giving up. Keep a positive mindset and go easy on yourself.
If you’ve given up smoking, what tips can you give other truck drivers?