A mini-quit is a way to practice various coping strategies in different situations prior to your planned quit date. It’s a short, risk-free experiment. You cannot “fail” in this effort. If you end up using tobacco again it simply means that you should give it another try, perhaps using a different strategy.
Short mini-quits are great way for trying out a variety of approaches to find the one that works best for you. So when your true quit date arrives, you will be prepared to deal with the urges that come your way.
How to try a mini-quit:
- Identify one or two points in a day where you can try a mini-quit. These should represent times or situations when you’d normally use tobacco.
- If you’re not sure when or where to practice your mini-quits, spend a day or two tracking your tobacco use. This will help you gain insight into your patterns. There is a Tracking Sheet on page 3 of the QUITPLAN® Quit Guide to help with this step.
- To try a mini-quit, pick the situation and commit yourself to not using tobacco during that time. Once that time or situation has passed, you are free to smoke again.
- During your mini-quit you can try a variety of coping strategies, such as:
- Hand or mouth substitutes: Hold a short straw or cinnamon stick. Carry tooth picks, hard candies or chewing gum.
- Distractions: Busy yourself with a task, such as taking a walk or starting a project that needs to be done.
- Relaxation: Try deep breathing or other stress management techniques.
- Quit Guide: You will find more ideas in the QUITPLAN Quit Guide (pages 17-22). You can try out your own ideas too.
- Try a number of mini-quits to figure out which strategies work and which do not.
- Write down which coping strategies worked for you so you don’t forget.
For more information, download a copy of the QUITPLAN Quit Guide
Remember, quitting doesn’t happen overnight. But with the right practice and the right approach, you can absolutely accomplish it.