Congratulations,
you’re in the right place to quit

There are more ex-smokers today than current smokers.
Are you ready to join them?

Whether this is your first time, or you’ve tried everything to quit, you’ve come to the right place. We know quitting is hard, so we’ve gathered all the best tips and resources for you right here. You’re sure to find a new quit tip you’ve never tried before.

Know your why

There are so many excellent reasons to give up smoking. Your health will start to improve almost immediately, and you will reduce your risk of developing illnesses like cancer, lung and heart disease.

You will no longer have to worry about keeping your loved ones safe from your secondhand smoke, and they will rest easy knowing you’re reducing your risk of becoming seriously ill.

Not to mention you will save a lot of money.

Quitting can be challenging, but having meaningful reasons for quitting is the first step to help yourself succeed.

What are your reasons to quit?

To be healthier
To save money
For my loved ones
Baby on the way
Because of a health scare
For social reasons
To get the most out of life
For my pets
Quitting hacks: Keep your reasons to quit on your mind
Write your reasons to get healthy on sticky notes and put them where you’ll see them every day.
Create a new bank account for all your savings and enjoy watching them pile up.
Ask your loved ones to record messages of support to keep on your phone.

Understand your triggers

Even if you have been quit for a while, a craving can feel like it’s come out of nowhere. But often there is a specific cause or “trigger” that makes you feel like you need a smoke. Those triggers can be emotional, social or physical. Knowing your triggers will help you avoid them or find ways to handle them. If you need some help to figure out your triggers, chatting to a Quitline counsellor can be a great source of support.

Social triggers

Social triggers include people and places. For example, you might always smoke with particular friends or when you’re socialising with alcohol.

Celebrating birthdays or special occasions
  • Stick with non-smokers.
  • Take something along to keep your hands busy (e.g. worry beads, necklace).
  • Plan an event that doesn’t involve alcohol, like going to the cinema, an escape room, the beach or playing laser tag.
With friends who smoke
  • Let your friends know that you’re trying to quit. They can support you by not offering you cigarettes, and not smoking around you.
  • Find a mate to quit with you.
  • Having a friend who doesn't smoke with you as support.
When drinking
  • Try holding your drink in your other hand.
  • Socialise in venues that do not have smoking areas.

Emotional triggers

Our emotions (especially negative ones) can trigger cravings to smoke. This is because your body wants to experience the dopamine (pleasure chemical) release that nicotine delivers when it reaches your brain.

Stressed or anxious
  • Practice some deep breathing exercises.
  • Meditation: This technique of stress relief can help you focus on a completely different place and reset your mind.
  • Listen to calming music or a podcast.
  • Try some grounding exercises (e.g. 5-4-3-2-1).
Sad or lonely
  • Text or call a friend, family member or chat to Beyond Blue for support.
  • Exercise - Head to the gym, take your dog for a walk, do an at-home dance workout.
Bored
  • Take up a new hobby such as knitting or buy a new plant to look after.
  • Have a puzzle laid out on the table and place a few pieces when a craving hits.
  • Learn or play an instrument. A cheap and easy option is a harmonica or recorder. Just start playing every time you want to light up.
  • Paint your nails: Buff, shape and lacquer your nails. You will have to stay still while it dries.
Angry
  • Get moving! Go for a walk around the block.
  • Take 10 deep breaths.
  • Talk to someone you trust.

Habits & physical triggers

A huge part of why it can be so tricky to quit smoking is because it becomes so closely associated with your habits and activities that you can forget how to do life without it. Switching up your routines while you quit can help your brain untangle cigarettes from the things you do every day.

Drinking coffee/alcohol
  • Change to a different drink and place it in your smoking hand.
After a meal
  • Chew on a flavoured toothpick - you can find them at your local health food store.
Driving
  • Clean the inside of your car, including the seats, to get rid of the smoky smell.
  • Wind down your windows, turn the radio up and sing!
  • Chew on a straw.
  • Swap the car ride for the bus.
First thing in the morning
  • Jump straight in the shower.
  • Stretch it out! Maybe even try an at home yoga video or attend a class.
After sex
  • Brush your teeth straightaway or take a shower.
  • Plan something fun with your partner – date night!
  • Talk to your partner about ways they can help you with your triggers and cravings.
Break from work
  • Go for a walk around the block, listen to music or sit in a different environment.
Talking on the phone
  • Keep your hands busy with a fidget spinner, stress ball or pen.
Quitting hacks: fight your cravings
Drinking using a straw
Sucking through a straw has the effect of releasing dopamine – a hormone that makes your feel happier.
Chewing gum
Chewing is a good distraction if you’re trying to block out cravings.
Play with a rubber band
This method can help distract your mind and keep your hands busy.

Find your how

Different strategies work for different people. From quitting cold turkey to talking to a trained counsellor, there will be something that works for you. It may take some trial and error to find what works but hang in there. You can quit.

Different Quit Methods

Cold Turkey

What is it?

Quitting smoking without any aids.

Why is going Cold Turkey effective?

Cold turkey works for many people, sometimes on their first attempt, sometimes on their 20th attempt.

Who is it best suited to?

If you don’t have a strong physical addiction, and you know your triggers and how to fight cravings, cold turkey can work for you.

Tips

There are so many different ways to fight cravings, it’s all about trial and error. If you had a quit attempt that didn’t work out, find out what went wrong and how to work around it before you give quitting another go .

Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) products

What is it?

NRT products include patches, gum, lozenges and spray.

Why is NRT effective? 

NRT products help to ease withdrawal symptoms to make it easier to stay smoke-free.

Who is it best suited to?

Speak to your GP or pharmacist to see if these products suit you.

Tips

For patches, rotate where you stick them on to reduce skin irritation.

If you’ve had an acidic beverage like coffee, fruit juice, soft drink or beer, wait 15 minutes before using oral NRT products for best effect.

Quitline

What is it?

Quitline is a confidential advice and information service.

Why is Quitline effective?

A trained counsellor will help you to plan and develop tailored strategies to quit smoking and stay smoke-free.

Who is it best suited to?

If you have no idea where to start, feel like you’ve tried everything, or are finding it difficult to stick with quitting, the Quitline is the place for you.

Tips

If you don’t like talking on the phone, webchat instead!

Combining a slow + a fast NRT product with support from Quitline can increase your changes of quitting for good. Chat to a GP or pharmacist.

Stop Smoking Medications

What is it?

Prescription non-nicotine medications.

Why is Smoking Medication effective?

Prescription stop smoking medications can be used to reduce withdrawal symptoms and the urge to smoke.

Who is it best suited to?

Talk to your doctor to see if this is the right option for you.

Quitting hacks: fight your cravings
Treat list
Write a list of rewards (no matter how small) you will receive when you hit certain milestones!
Walk break
Walk around the block with a co-worker instead of having a smoking break.
Remind yourself
Remember the reasons that you want to quit and think about the positive change you are making.

Have a great support system

There are many different types of support available to help you quit smoking. If you’re a people-person, quit with a friend or choose someone you’ll call when you’re struggling. If you’d prefer online options, what about an app or our new interactive quit planner to get you on your way?

I want to talk to someone

Quitline

Whether you're thinking about quitting, ready to quit today or trying to cope with cravings and withdrawal symptoms, the Quitline can help.

Learn more about Quitline.

GP or pharmacist

If you want to talk to someone face-to-face, book an appointment with your doctor. This is especially important if you have any existing health conditions. You can also talk to your local pharmacist or make a telehealth appointment.

Learn more about getting started with your GP.

Friends and family

Text or call your family or a friend and ask them about their day. Ask family or friends to record motivational messages to help you stay quit.

Work colleagues

Find a quit buddy and motivate each other to stay quit.

I want to quit online

Quit Planner

For some smokers developing a quit smoking plan can help them achieve their quitting goal. Developing a quit plan is about identifying what works for you and taking it step by step.

Start building your own Quit Plan.

My QuitBuddy App

The My QuitBuddy App tracks your quitting progress, such as days smoke-free, cigarettes avoided, health gained and dollars saved.

Download My QuitBuddy App.

Quitline webchat

If you prefer to chat online than over the phone, then Quitline’s web chat is for you. It's the same service with the same operating hours, and allows you to chat with a trained quit counsellor via the website. Look for the 'chat now' button on the home page.

Find out more about the Quitline here.

Quitting hacks: fight your cravings
Journaling
Writing down how you're feeling, keeping track of your improving health and remembering why you quit is very helpful.
Cards
Find a deck of cards and shuffle them or play some solitaire.
Pet
Hang out with your pet or go for a walk. By quitting smoking, you're protecting their health too.

Fight your cravings

Want more tips to quit smoking? Once you've tried the hacks below, check out our brand new Quit Planner or get support from the Quitline.

Drink
Keep your fluids up with water or juice. It is surprising how well this works.
Stay away
Stay away from places where people smoke and go somewhere fun where it is not allowed.
Caffeine
Reduce coffee, tea or other caffeinated drinks as caffeine can have a stronger effect when you stop smoking. It can also be a trigger to smoke. Try water or a different hot drink in a different cup.
Exercise
Go for a walk, run, or anything that gets you moving.
Reading
Immerse yourself in a book, magazine or website you enjoy.
Eat
Crunch on a healthy fruit or vegetable. After quitting, you'll soon find food and drink taste much better. Visit LiveLighter for health snack ideas.
Deep breathing
Take three deep breaths. Hold the last breath in for a few seconds, then exhale slowly. This will help you relax and use muscles for inhaling.
Listening
Try listening to calming music. If you don’t know where to start, try searching for a calming playlist online.
Distract yourself
Stop what you’re doing and do something else.
Talk it out
Text or talk with a friend who is supportive.
Stretch
Do a few stretches to keep blood flowing and to avoid sleepiness.
Put an ice cube on your wrist
When you feel a craving coming on, placing an ice cube on your wrist helps your brain rewire to associate getting a craving with the cold of the ice block.
Brush your teeth
Floss and brush your teeth. Think about how much nicer your breath will smell without tobacco.
Craft
Take up a new craft that keeps your hands busy such as knitting, painting, puzzle cubes or colouring in.
To-do list
Write a to do list of what you need to do today. Start checking them off!

Free Quit Support

Talk to the Quitline

Quitline is a confidential advice and information service for people who want to quit smoking. For the cost of a local call (except mobile phones), a trained advisor can help you to plan and develop strategies to quit smoking and stay stopped. You can also use webchat during opening hours.

My QuitBuddy App

The My QuitBuddy App tracks your quitting progress, such as days smoke-free, cigarettes avoided, health gained and dollars saved.

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