Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Smoking Cessation Health Center

Font Size

How I Quit Smoking With Stress Reduction and Martial Arts

Many relaxation techniques may help you stop smoking.

Tips for Stress-Reduction Activities While You Stop Smoking

The American Cancer Society's Quitline counselors and other smoking-cessation experts recommend a variety of techniques to help you quit smoking.

  • Deep breathing. Breathe in deeply, letting your stomach expand until your lungs are filled. Pause a minute. Then exhale fully. Pause a minute. Then take another deep breath in, hold a minute, then exhale. Continue with your eyes closed until you feel calm. 
  • Guided imagery. "Imagine yourself in the situation that causes you the most difficulty, and picture all the strategies you're going to use to address the situation without smoking," says Trina Ita, the counseling supervisor for the American Cancer Society's Quitline. "We call it a mental rehearsal." 
  • T'ai chi. This mind-body exercise combines deep breathing with postures that flow from one to the next through a series of slow, continuous movements. Researchers at the University of Miami are now studying its effectiveness as part of a smoking-cessation program.

There are other relaxation techniques, including yoga and meditation. The trick is to find a relaxation technique that you enjoy, and that fits into your life.

1|2
Reviewed on January 23, 2009

Today on WebMD

hands breaking a cigarette
Is quitting cold turkey an effective method?
ashtray
14 tips to get you through the first hard days.
 
smoking man
Surprising impacts of tobacco on the body.
cigarette smoke
What happens when you kick the habit?
 

Filtered cigarettes
ARTICLE
an array of e cigarettes
ARTICLE
 
human heart
ARTICLE
Woman experiencing withdrawal symptoms
ARTICLE
 

man smoking cigarette
ARTICLE
no smoking sign
VIDEO
 
Woman ashing cigarette in ashtray
ARTICLE
chain watch
ARTICLE