You’ve probably heard of the Great Resignation. But quitting your job can also be a great way for you to move ahead. This is part of the Men’s Health series that shows how real-life quitters turned out to be winners and how you can do the same.
WHETHER YOU RELY on vaping to feel calm, drinking coffee or energy drinks to perk up, or knocking back your favorite alcoholic drink to unwind a little, all three of these extremely common vices can wreak havoc on your health and life–especially because they’re so addictive. Good news! We have the steps to help you quit vaping and other addictive behaviors. It will take effort, but it will make you feel much better.
Escape the Vape
Vaping is designed to keep you hooked despite the risk of lung damage and even cancer. Vape juice, also known as. Paul Hokemeyer Ph.D., a clinical psychologist and addiction expert, explained that liquid nicotine is converted into a vapor and then absorbed by the lungs. Your nervous system is put into hyperarousal, which initially feels wonderful. Hokemeyer states that “Unfortunately, this feeling of euphoria quickly wears off leaving us feeling depleted and compelled to chase that initial high again.” Do you want to quit? Try this:
Step 1: Try cold turkey.
“Most people who wind up stopping smoking tobacco, despite all of the different methods to stop, just throw it out and go cold turkey one day,” says Edwin Salsitz, M.D., associate clinical professor of psychiatry at Mount Sinai. Vaping is similar. Be prepared. Dr. Salsitz warns that withdrawal symptoms such as headaches or cravings may occur for a few days. Tylenol is a good option.
Step 2: Fill the void the healthy way.
If Tylenol and trying to tolerate withdrawal symptoms just aren’t doing enough and you’re driven back to the vape, consider bringing on additional coping tools. Dr. Hokemeyer suggests that you try yoga, mental health counseling and asking your doctor about anti-craving medication. Early evidence shows CBD may also prove to be helpful, according to a 2017 study on rats in the journal Addiction Biology.
Step 3: Remember, it all takes time.
“Quitting vaping is hard. Dr. Hokemeyer says that you may take two steps forward, one back and another sideways. Dr. Hokemeyer says that the goal is to make incremental improvements, not perfection. You can always try again if you feel pulled back to old habits.
Cut out Caffeine
You may think you crave the taste coffee, soda, or energy drinks, but each sip comes with a nice hit of caffeine for adrenaline and dopamine stimulation. Dr. Hokemeyer says that it can be difficult to stop caffeine, particularly since it can cause exhaustion and make you want another cup. You may need to seek help if you feel drained, tired, or irritable without your coffee or can of choice. To break that cycle, try this:
Step 1: Improve your sleep.
“If you’re really sluggish in the morning and dependent on caffeine, you really need to work hard on excellent sleep quality,” says Drew Ramsey. Get an extra hour or two of sleep each night. To reduce your dependence on caffeine, make it a priority to get an extra hour each night. Keep in mind that caffeine has a very long half-life so it is important to not drink too much during the day.
Step 2: Set a realistic quit date.
“Set a goal of three to six months to completely wean yourself off caffeine,” says Dr. Hokemeyer. To avoid serious fatigue, headaches, irritability, or headaches, the idea is to slowly reduce your caffeine intake. “The longer and kinder the time frame you give yourself, the better will be your chances of success.”
Step 3: Rise and rev up differently.
The best way to re-energize without an energy drink may be an early workout, says Dr. Ramsey. “Create a very str