What is Stoptober? & Why it’s Time to Quit

Published at 05 October, 2023 14:45.

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Kicking the smoking habit can be challenging, and it's not uncommon for the average daily smoker to make 30 or more attempts before achieving success. While this may seem daunting, don't be discouraged; just because quitting smoking is tough doesn't mean it's impossible.

If you're seeking motivation to embark on your quitting journey, consider participating in the Stoptober challenge. Held every October by Yorkshire Smokefree, Stoptober encourages smokers to break free from the habit for 28 days. Over the past ten years, 2.3 million individuals have attempted to quit during this campaign, making it the largest nationwide smoking cessation effort.

If you're among the 7 out of 10 smokers looking to quit, read on to discover what Stoptober is all about and how it can significantly increase your chances of quitting.

What is Stoptober?

Stoptober is a 28-day stop-smoking challenge held every October, founded on research indicating that if you abstain from smoking for 28 days, you're five times more likely to quit for good. But how does Stoptober work?

The challenge divides the quitting process into 28 manageable days, making it less daunting for those looking to break free from smoking. Participants are also encouraged to embark on this journey with friends, family, or like-minded quitters, increasing their chances of success compared to quitting alone.

Why Stoptober is an Ideal Time to Quit Smoking

There are several reasons why Stoptober is the perfect time to start your journey to quit smoking:

  1. Ample Support: Quitting smoking cold turkey can be incredibly challenging, with only 3-5% of smokers managing to quit this way long-term. Stoptober aims to provide smokers with abundant resources and tools, including advice on quit-smoking products, daily emails, and personalised plans. This comprehensive support can help you stay motivated and quit for good. Additionally, utilising your local stop-smoking service year-round can make you four times more likely to succeed.
  2. Community of Quitters: Quitting with others can provide the extra support you need. Encourage a friend to join you in the Stoptober challenge or take advantage of the online community available through the campaign. Sharing your experience can be a powerful motivator, and talking about your quit attempt with others increases your commitment to success.
  3. Reduced Smoking Triggers: One of the most challenging aspects of quitting is facing situations where you typically smoke, such as at social events. During Stoptober, fewer people smoked due to the 2.3 million participants attempting to quit. This reduces the temptation to smoke, and if you have a quitting friend, you can plan to avoid trigger situations together temporarily, making it easier to manage cravings.
  4. Achievable Goals: Completing the 28-day Stoptober challenge is based on research showing that doing so increases your likelihood of quitting smoking for good.. It provides a clear start and end date, even if you continue smoking afterwards. Achieving this goal can boost your confidence to take on more significant challenges in your journey toward a smoke-free life.
  5. Proven Success: Thousands of people quit with Stoptober yearly, thanks to community support and guidance on effective tools and products. Since its inception in 2012, Stoptober has encouraged over 1 million quit attempts, with over eight thousand people quitting permanently during the first campaign alone.

How to Improve Your Chances of Quitting with Stoptober

Taking part in Stoptober is an excellent first step in your quitting journey, but resisting temptation remains challenging, especially when cravings strike. Here are some tips to enhance your chances:

- List Your Reasons to Quit: Document why you want to quit smoking. This list can serve as a powerful motivator when you need extra support.

- Utilise Available Support: You don't have to go through this personal challenge alone. Leverage the support services and Stoptober resources to increase your chances of success.

- Have a Craving Management Plan: Develop a plan to combat cravings when they arise. Our guide to managing cravings while quitting smoking provides practical tips to help you quit successfully.

- Don't Give Up on Giving Up: Slip-ups happen, but they shouldn't derail your quitting attempt. You can overcome a smoking relapse and use it as motivation to stay smoke-free.

Set your own Stoptober smoking challenge this October and make it the year you quit smoking.

How to Participate in Stoptober

Joining the Stoptober Campaign is as simple as committing to quit smoking for 28 days during October. The official start date is October 1st, but you can join or recruit friends to quit anytime during the month.

Participation is free, you can choose an approach that suits you best. Yorkshire Smokefree website offers various tools and advice on products and techniques to support quitting.

So, whatever path you take, rest assured that there's plenty of support available to help you achieve your goal and quit smoking today.