By CATHY BROWNFIELD
Family Recovery Center
Old habits are hard to break. You have to want to be successful if you're going to achieve the desired goal. It's so easy for someone to say, "You need to just quit. Just never pick up another ______. (Insert tools of this habitcigarettes, alcohol, drugs, whatever.) There are four questions you can ask yourself to determine if you are ready to stop a bad habit, say, smoking.
Question 1: When you quit, what will you replace the habit with?
You know what they say about idle hands. When you can't pick up a cigarette and lighter and go stand with the other smokers what are you going to do with yourself? When you are spending less on cigarettes you will have more jingle in your pocket. If you're getting in shape to run a 5K you aren't going to be smoking. What do you want that is worth giving up your bad habit?
Question 2: How much do you really want to change that bad habit?
If you are changing yourself for someone else, that's the wrong motivation. You have to want to change. If you don't, you won't.
Question 3: Is this the right time for you to kick that habit?
Experts advise that you should change only one habit at a time. If you are planning a pregnancy, you should stop smoking and get your body in shape for the healthiest opportunity for the baby and yourself.
Question 4: What are you going to get out of quitting that habit?
You will need strong motivation. Make a couple of lists. The title of one list will be "Good things I will have if I quit smoking." The other will be "Bad things I will get away from." These items will be from YOU. Not your spouse. Not your parents. From you. About you. You need to understand how you're going to benefit from kicking that bad habit.
The Ohio Department of Health has a tobacco use prevention and cessation program, the Ohio Tobacco Quit Line. Changes went into effect July 1. The quit line will serve only uninsured, Medicaid recipients and pregnant women callers free of charge. The program has been working with employers and health plans to support the cost of tobacco cessation services provided to their employees and beneficiaries. Ohio Tobacco Collaborative is a public-private partnership created to sustain cessation services. The collaborative provides commercial carriers, employers and third party administrators with access to tobacco cessation services and the Ohio Tobacco Quit Line at a reduced rate and helps employers move toward compliance with the federal affordable Care Act mandates to provide cessation services in a cost-effective manner, advises the ODH. Individuals with health insurance who contact the Ohio Tobacco Quit Line will be directed to their health plans or employers for cessation services if their plan or employer hasn't joined the collaborative. Ohioans are urged to encourage their health plans and employers to join the Tobacco Collaborative to maintain access to Quit Line services for other Ohioans.
Quitting a bad habit isn't easy. But having tools available to assist you may be easier than you think.
For more information about quitting bad habits like substance abuse contact Family Recovery Center at 964 N. Market St., Lisbon; phone, 330-424-1468; or e-mail, email@example.com. FRC is funded, in part, by United Way of Northern Columbiana County and the Ohio Department of Alcohol and Drug Addiction Services.