Quitting smoking is hard. Studies show it takes the average person seven or eight attempts to finally quit smoking for good. In our free cessation classes, we work with tobacco users to help them prepare for lives without tobacco, choose the right nicotine replacement therapy and devise strategies for fighting cravings. Beyond the step-by-step advice, however, many smokers benefit from identifying the reason why they want to quit.

If you’re thinking about quitting smoking, now’s the time to find your “why.” Knowing your reasons for quitting can help you get past a craving and finally quit for good.

To find the reason why you’re quitting, ask yourself a few questions:

  • What do I not like about smoking?
  • How is my smoking affecting my health?
  • What will happen to me if I continue smoking?
  • Does my smoking affect my family?
  • What do I miss out on because I smoke?
  • How will quitting make my life better?

Once you find the reason you want to quit smoking, remind yourself every day – it’ll make it easier to manage your cravings and keep focused on your end goal.

Wish you were healthier?

Consider what your health will look like after quitting:

  • The chance of developing cancer or having a heart attack, heart disease or stroke will decrease.
  • Likelihood of developing cataracts and other diseases will decrease.
  • Less likely to catch colds or the flu, and faster recovery if you do get sick.
  • Fewer coughing spells and easier breathing.
  • Lower blood pressure.
  • Healthier skin and more youthful appearance.

You probably didn’t start smoking because you thought it was healthy, but the prospect of better health can be what helps you quit for good.

Wish you had a better lifestyle?

Smoking takes time and money away from the things you love:

  • More money to spend or save.
  • More time to spend with family, catch up on work or focus on a favorite hobby.
  • Less worry about when you can smoke next or where it’s okay to smoke.
  • Food tastes better.
  • Clothes, car, house and kids won’t smell like smoke.
  • More ability to smell food, flowers and fragrances.

Wish you had a better family life?

Quitting smoking is good for more than just you – your entire family will benefit from your choice:

  • Quitting sets a great example for kids and encourages them not to start smoking.
  • Friends, family, co-workers and other loved ones will be proud of you.
  • Reduces friends’ and family’s exposure to secondhand smoke.
  • Healthier children.
  • More energy to spend time with friends and family.
  • Ensure you’re around to share in family’s special moments.

Once you have a list of all the reasons you want to become smokefree, keep it in a place where you will see it often, like your car or where you used to keep your cigarettes. Referring back to your reasons why you want to quit can help you fight cravings and stop smoking for good.