How to Handle Anger and Rage When Quitting Smoking


When you quit smoking, your emotions may not be as in check as they were before. Even if you are not an emotional person, the effect that cravings can have on you can turn you into that kind of person.

You may find it harder to stay in control, keep calm and be reasonable. These are feelings that pretty much everyone going through withdrawal symptoms experiences. Thankfully, there are ways to cope with these feelings and to move past your rage and anger. Here are some of the best coping strategies on How to Handle Anger and Rage When Quitting Smoking.

Avoid the Triggers

The best treatment is prevention. This holds true for any disease, and it applies equally as well to withdrawal symptom rage. If you know what makes you angry, you can simply avoid it and avoid the anger.

This generally involves a two-part strategy. First, you have to avoid the things that tick you off normally. These might be your pet peeves or certain types of conversations that put you in an angry mood. It could also be your boss at work. You may not be able to avoid your boss, but you can certainly make an effort to have a different kind of relationship with that person. Sometimes you just have to fake it and be happy even when you don’t feel like it in order to fight the rage that comes with experiencing withdrawal symptoms.

Then you have to avoid the triggers that cause your cravings. Once you start missing your cigarettes you are going to start feeling anxious, testy, and easily enraged. It won’t take much to push you over that tipping point and make you angry. To keep that from happening, you have to identify what makes your cravings appear. Is it stress? Is it going back to your old stomping grounds where you used to smoke most often?

For many people, the cravings are triggered by revisiting locations, people and memories that involved them smoking a lot in the past. If you can make an effort to steer clear of them, then you can sidestep the rage more easily. This may involve staying away from people you care about and places you love, but it may be necessary to make some changes to your life if you are going to make the big change of quitting actually last.

Deal with the Anger

You can’t always avoid the anger. There will be times where it comes out of you and you just have to deal with it. In that instance, you cannot let it control you, and you cannot try to marginalise it. Instead, focus on what is causing you that anger. Is it really a big deal and worth being angry about? Are you really angry about that trigger or is it just that you miss your cigarettes?

Asking yourself these questions may help you to see how illogical and pointless your anger is. If you can dispel it, you will be able to conquer it better every time it comes up.

You can also try to think of your anger as a temporary problem. You know that emotional state will pass. So instead of venting your anger or saying something out of turn, try to keep quiet and to yourself until the feeling has passed. You are going to want a cigarette when that anger appears, to help calm you down, but you need to fight that feeling as much as you can.

One of the best ways to do that is to keep people around you who will be able to support you and who can sympathise with what you are going through. These can be family members, friends or just people who provide quit smoking help to those who need it. Make sure you have their phone numbers available on your phone and that you try to spend as much time with them as possible.

Keep in mind that these feelings of anger and irritability will be strongest within the first two weeks of withdrawal. If you can push past that time period, then you will start to have an easier time of it. Just keep telling yourself that you don’t have to fight much longer, and you will be able to achieve your goal of quitting smoking. But you are not going to be able to do that if you don’t have a plan and you don’t have a support system in place. Before you quit, make a strategy for yourself and ensure you stick to it.

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