Quit Vaping Support Group
Are you a vaper?
Vaping has risen to popularity as a ‘safe alternative’ to smoking cigarettes. Take Europe for an example. The number of vapers has increased rapidly from an estimated 7 million in 2011 to over 55 million today. This number is expected to continue climbing.
The bottom line is that vaping is extremely addictive. It’s the nicotine. It’s exactly what hooked early smokers and causes a myriad of health issues: heart disease and high blood pressure to name a few.
Let us help you quit this horrible habit once and for all. With JournalOwl’s growing community of ex-vapers, along with our guided group journal challenge, you can be well on your way to a vape-free lifestyle.
How does it work?
By starting this challenge, you commit to journaling daily and living vape-free during the challenge. Starting today, you will answer a series of questions designed to help you uncover the underlying reasons why you continue to vape. To manage the stress and anxiety of early withdrawal, we augment your daily journaling challenge with a guided breathing exercise.
At the end of the challenge, you will be vape-free and living a much healthier lifestyle.
Ready to get started?
Write down why you want to quit vaping as motivation. When the cravings kick in, it may be hard to remember why you wanted to quit vaping in the first place. Create a list of every reason why you want to quit. Look at this for inspiration if quitting gets tough. Some reasons you may want to quit include:
- Vaping is not proven to be safe. Most e-cigarettes still contain nicotine, and the vapor contains chemical additives that may cause damage your lungs.
- Vaping is an expensive habit. Quitting vaping would help you save money and allow you to pursue other interests in life.
- The addiction to nicotine and the routine of vaping can control your life by forcing you to vape as soon as cravings kick in. By quitting, you can take control back.
- If you are a parent, quitting can be beneficial to your child’s health and also help you model healthy behavior for them.
- Vaping has recently been linked to several cases of serious illness, which is sometimes fatal. The exact cause of this vaping-related illness still isn’t clear, but it may be linked to contaminants or additives often found in counterfeit vaping products. }
Identify your vaping triggers so that you can avoid them. Certain activities can cause you to crave e-cigarettes after you quit. Make a list of when and where you usually vape. These will likely become your triggers once you quit.
- If you always vape after waking up, plan a new activity to do in the morning, such as yoga or taking a walk. You might also have an extra cup of coffee in the morning.
- If you vape in the car while driving, keep gum or hard candy in the car to use instead. You can also try carpooling to work to avoid the urge.
- If you vape socially at bars or parties, replace these activities with other social activities. For instance, go to the movies with your friend or plan a trip to the local rock climbing center.
- If boredom makes you vape, get a new hobby. You might learn how to cross-stitch or join a soccer team.
Tell your friends and family in advance that you are going to quit. Explain that you want to stop vaping and that you would appreciate their support throughout the process. Warn them that you may be irritable during the nicotine withdrawal phase.
- You might say, “I’ve made a decision that I want to stop vaping. It is an expensive and unhealthy habit. I know that I might be grouchy for a few weeks, but it would mean so much to me if you would stick with me and help me quit.”
- If any of your friends smoke or vape, ask them if they would stop doing it in your presence. For example, you might say, “I’m really trying hard to quit. I know you still like to vape, and that’s OK. I just ask that you avoid doing it around me.”
- It could also be helpful to ask a close friend who also vapes to quit with you. You can provide support and hold each other accountable.
Busy your hands when you want to vape. This will help you break the habit of reaching for an e-cigarette. During times when you normally like to vape, do something else with your hands.
- For example, if you always vape while watching TV at home, start an activity that uses your hands. You could learn to knit or play a game on your phone. Using a coloring app can be helpful as it requires you to focus on the details and use creativity.
- If you vape socially, bring a stress ball with you. Squeeze it when you are feeling the craving to vape.
Keep yourself busy during the withdrawal period. Withdrawal can be more intense for people quitting cold turkey than those weaning off of nicotine slowly. To be prepared for this, plan to keep yourself active and occupied throughout the withdrawal period.
- Schedule activities for yourself when you usually vape. For example, take a nighttime pottery class instead of sitting at home. It is a good idea to plan more activities than you may have time for, just to avoid any downtime.
- Incorporate some light exercise into your routine. You might go for a run after work or take a brisk walk when you wake up.
- If you have some vacation days saved up, go on a retreat to break yourself entirely of the habit. Don’t bring any e-cigarettes with you.
Prepare for side effects lasting up to a month. Everyone experiences withdrawal differently. You may have increased appetite, insomnia, strange dreams, chills, anxiety, heartburn, or a number of other effects. In most cases, however, these symptoms only last up to a month.
- Insomnia usually only lasts for the first week. If you have insomnia after this week, see a doctor.
- You may feel hungrier than normal for the first 2 weeks. Instead of reaching for sugary or processed snacks, try snacking on vegetables and fruits. Some good snacks include carrots and hummus, celery and peanut butter, or apple slices.
- As time goes on, cravings will grow farther and farther apart. You may still feel occasional cravings for up to a year after quitting.
Congratulations on finishing Week 1! Give yourself rewards when you reach your goals. Rewards will teach your brain that good things happen when you avoid vaping. Create small rewards for both little victories and big ones.
- For example, you might eat a small piece of chocolate when you resist a strong craving.
- You might go see a movie or visit a water park after 1 week of no vaping.
- Save the money you used to spend on vaping. You can put it towards a vacation or buy yourself something nice.
Get Active in JournalOwl Community Groups. You can chat live with other quitters on JournalOwl, or join groups like Nicotine Anonymous. These groups will connect you with others who are struggling to kick their nicotine habit as well. They can provide advice and support throughout the process of quitting.
- You can find a local Nicotine Anonymous group by going here: https://nicotine-anonymous.org/find-a-meeting.html
- There are also online support groups, such as Voices of Nicotine Recovery and In the Rooms.
Reduce Stress in Your Life. Quitting vaping may increase irritability or anxiety in your life, both of which can affect your personal relationships and cause new stress. To increase your chances of success, try to eliminate any sources of stress.
- Try to avoid taking on new responsibilities at work or in your social life until you have successfully quit.
- Avoid people and situations that make you feel stressed. For example, if you get nervous at large parties, stick to smaller social events until you have quit.
- Look into relaxation techniques, such as meditation or tai chi. Take some time each day to unwind. You might take a hot bath, get a massage, or read a book.