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Tim Ferriss: The Human Experiment Blog

January 31, 2007

5 Tips for Nicotine Addicts

Filed under: Uncategorized, Weekly Tips and Tricks — timferriss @ 5:19 pm


I don’t smoke because — among other reasons — I was born prematurely and can barely use one lung.  That said, I know quite a few nicotine addicts who have trouble kicking the habit.  For the would-be non-smoker, the never-ending debate is whether to quit or reduce.

Simply pinning consumption down to X number of cigarettes a day doesn’t work for many because it’s not precise.  The first cigarette of the day is usually with the morning coffee or even earlier, and one leads to another for occasions ranging from the after food, during the commute, for the waiting period, during moments of stress, during moments of joy and so on.  Before you know it, you’ve reached your cap and have 20 hours to go!  Follow the tips below to prevent this and end the cycle:

TIP 1: Decide on the number of cigarettes you want to smoke in a day

TIP 2: Divide the day into 2 phases of 12 hour each. Phase I starts at 12 noon and ends at 12 midnight.  Phase II starts at 12 midnight and ends at 12 noon.

TIP 3: Decide that one phase is strictly non smoking; I would recommend you choose the 2nd phase between 12 midnight and 12 noon as your non-smoking phase.

TIP 4: Divide 12 by the target number of cigarettes. This is the number of hours that must pass after any one cigarette before you can smoke another.

TIP 5: Use this fixed schedule to establish an steady intake of nicotine that can be decreased over time.  If your intake is  standardized in this way, withdrawal symptoms  disappear within three weeks, after which point you can cut your smoking period down to 6 hours, 3 hours, and then no hours.

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One Response to “5 Tips for Nicotine Addicts”

  1. Arena Says:

    I’m going to print this and mail it to my low-tech smoking friend! Thanks for the advice.

    I’m a little confussed by the last line where you cut the smoking period… wouldn’t you want to increase the period in order to reduce the frequency? …maybe I’m just reading this wrong. Anyway, i totally get it and it’s great advice!

    Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!

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