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Step 4: Protect yourself against a relapse.

So you've taken all the steps, your quit date has passed and you're breathing freeā€”but you feel like having just one more cigarette. What now?

Turn to your support system. Whether you and a buddy decide to quit together or you find a support group, you should have someone to turn to when the cravings rear their ugly head.

Find support for your smoke-free life!

So how do you avoid those relapse triggers? Being assertive can help you stay out of social situations that might tempt you to light up. "When your buddy calls up and says, 'Let's go down, grab a drink together, and then we'll go over to the movie,' you've got to say, 'You know, I love you, but I'm not doing that because I know what's going to happen if I do that.'"

When you're really in a crunch, Dr. Oz says you should also have some last-ditch escape mechanisms to steer your focus away from cigarettes. "It can range from other things to put in your mouth, like cinnamon sticks or tea. File your nails," he says. "Do something that distracts you at those times of crisis."
FROM: Dr. Oz: The Latest Secrets to Quit Smoking
Published on March 14, 2008