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Things to help keep you on track if you’re struggling to stop smoking

So you’ve decided to stop smoking. Well done! There may be a long road ahead, but the decision to stop (or even cut down) is the first big step to a more healthy you.

Whether you’re preparing to quit or you’ve already taken the plunge, it’s tricky to stick to your new regime. One thing that can really help is reminding yourself of the reasons behind your decision to put down the tobacco – but we know you’ve heard the usual suspects a million times before.

That’s why we’ve compiled a list of well-known benefits – with a little fresh thinking for each. So next time you’re wondering why on Earth you’ve ceased those cigarettes, one of these pointers may be enough to help you through.

Stopping smoking

Boost your blood flow

Stopping smoking improves your circulation, as most of the literature tells you. Blood flow increases and blood pressure goes down. Great! But what does that mean for everyday life?

With better circulation, you’ll feel more alert, awake and active – welcome news if you find that you’re struggling to fight the afternoon flag. And you should also feel stronger and warmer, with a heightened sense of touch. Who knew?

Sharpen your senses

Your olfactory nerves sit behind your nose, transmitting smell signals to the brain, and we’re often told that smoking can damage these. What you may not know is that just two days without a cigarette is enough to start sharpening up your senses again.

So if you’re struggling to stick to it, try to hold out a little longer and buy yourself a new scented candle or a yummy treat – the new level of smell and taste might be enough to motivate you through a tough period...

Put snoring to bed

Maybe you don’t consider snoring a problem for you (many people don’t even know that they do it!) but almost a quarter of smokers exhibit ‘habitual snoring’ which disturbs their sleep. Snoring can mean that you spend less time in a deep sleep – the kind your body needs to repair and defend from illnesses. Stay away from the cigarettes and you may find fighting off that cold a little easier.

Amazingly, second-hand smoke is enough to create a snorer too, so if your non-smoking partner is keeping you awake, then that may improve as you cut down.

Stopping smoking

Spend what you save

It’s hardly ground breaking news that you’ll save money once you’ve stopped smoking. But the mere idea of savings can’t compare to feeling the change in your pocket.

If you’ve stopped smoking to save for something special then try keeping a picture of it somewhere prominent, like on your fridge or in your pocket. That way, the lovely butterflies you get when you think of that precious prize could help you fight any craving.

Not saving for one big thing? Treat yourself! And when you’re wearing that fantastic pair of shiny new shoes, just remember they are down to money that was previously going up in smoke.

Whatever your plans are, our #makeaswitch campaign aims to both inspire and help you make those changes come to fruition. If you're looking to switch any of your finances, M&S Bank offer a range of products that may suit your needs, find out more here: current accounts, credit cards, loans, insurance, savings & investments.

Published 05/01/2016