If you’re a smoker who’s also spiritual, you may wonder if you should pray to quit smoking.
The short answer is yes, it can be a very helpful tool. However, prayer alone is rarely enough for long-term smoking cessation. For effective results, you need to combine it with other methods for quitting smoking, such as hypnosis or nicotine replacement therapy (NRT).
To understand how praying can help you quit smoking, it’s important to know why it’s so hard to quit in the first place.
Table of Contents
- Why is it so difficult to quit smoking?
- Can prayer help you stop smoking?
- 1. Prayer helps you deal with nicotine withdrawal symptoms.
- 2. Prayer helps to connect you with a higher power, such as the Holy Spirit.
- 3. Prayer reminds you to honor your body.
- 4. Prayer can help you practice better self-control.
- 5. Prayer helps you keep a healthy routine and stay on track.
- 6. Prayer reminds you of how smoking affects other people.
- 5 Quit Smoking Tools That Make Praying More Powerful
Why is it so difficult to quit smoking?
Cigarette addiction is a complex disease. There are many factors involved, from genetics to peer pressure and environmental triggers.
Some drivers behind this addiction include:
Smokers become addicted to nicotine quickly.
One study found that it only takes a few cigarettes to become addicted, and this can happen within a few days.
After just the second dose of nicotine, neuroscientists discovered that the number of nicotine receptors in the brain skyrockets.
In other words, there’s no such thing as “recreational smoking.” The moment you take your first puff, you’re already at risk of developing one of the most unhealthy habits known today.
Nicotine withdrawals can be punishing to the body and mind.
Once the addiction takes hold, it quickly turns into a vicious cycle: you smoke for the nicotine, and you crave more of it to keep your addiction satisfied.
When you stop smoking, you’re withholding that supply. If you try quitting cold turkey without preparing yourself or getting support from a medical professional, then you’ll likely suffer through some very difficult withdrawal symptoms.
These can include:
- Intense cravings
- Fluctuating appetite
- Irritability and anger
The painful and stressful withdrawal symptoms smokers experience when they quit smoking are a major reason why many eventually return to this harmful habit.
In addition, nicotine is an incredibly tough chemical to beat.
Smokers have been shown to suffer from withdrawal symptoms for several years after quitting, which makes it very difficult for them to stay away from cigarettes long-term without outside support.
Some smokers don’t receive support when they try to quit.
In some circles, you may be pressured to keep smoking by peers or family members.
This is especially true for younger smokers who are under the influence of their friends and families while they’re still developing habits that can last a lifetime.
Younger people also have fewer coping strategies when faced with tough situations, like cravings or stress.
Unfortunately, support can be a powerful motivator to prevent smokers from relapsing. Without it, it can be challenging to stay on course, especially during those early days of quitting.
Some smokers are genetically predisposed to addiction.
This is one reason you can’t just “will” or purely pray your way to quit.
Even if you avoid smoking for a little while, you might find yourself drawn back in before you know it because of this genetic element. Having a predisposition to addiction means you’re even more likely to develop a chemical dependence on nicotine.
Because you were born with this genetic link, you may be at higher risk of developing other types of unhealthy habits or addictions as well. Some examples are gambling, alcohol abuse, or compulsive shopping.
If you’ve tried to quit smoking in the past and relapsed repeatedly, then you may be genetically predisposed to addiction. You can confirm this by consulting a professional doctor.
Combine all of these elements, and it becomes clear why kicking the habit can feel so insurmountable.
However, keep this in mind:
Quitting smoking is 100% possible.
Through prayer and other proven methods for smoking cessation, you can break the cycle for good.
Can prayer help you stop smoking?
Yes! The benefits of prayer are like meditation.
When you meditate, you’re clearing your mind of all the noises you hear and the distractions you see.
Prayer is similar in that you focus on what you want to accomplish with prayer, such as quitting smoking or asking for help from a higher power.
You stop thinking about everything else going on in your life when you pray, which can be especially helpful when you’re trying to break an addiction.
Here’s a closer look at the benefits of prayer for quitting smoking:
1. Prayer helps you deal with nicotine withdrawal symptoms.
Failure to manage nicotine withdrawal symptoms is one of the biggest reasons many smokers relapse. Praying can help you cope better with the anger, physical pain, and frustration you may feel when you’re quitting.
2. Prayer helps to connect you with a higher power, such as the Holy Spirit.
Trusting in a higher power can help you face life’s challenges without nicotine dependence.
For instance, some people smoke to help them be more comfortable in social situations. Others do so because of depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues. Without nicotine, they may not know how to navigate their challenges by themselves.
However, you can pray to your higher power each day and ask for the courage you need.
It can help you feel less alone in your quit efforts and more capable of handling life’s stresses without reaching for a cigarette.
3. Prayer reminds you to honor your body.
Smoking addiction can be so powerful, it forces you to ignore how smoking slowly destroys your body.
For instance, it can cause you to lose your sense of taste and smell. This habit also contributes to acne, wrinkles, and can make you more susceptible to infections. It can also cause you to develop cancer, heart disease, bronchitis, emphysema, and other serious health problems.
Conversely, many faiths and religions teach you to treat your body as a temple. This means doing your best to stay healthy, and that includes not smoking.
4. Prayer can help you practice better self-control.
We often hear how smoking can cause you to develop self-control issues. When you’re addicted, you may find it difficult not to smoke in social situations where you’d normally light up with your friends or coworkers.
You also might feel an intense craving for nicotine when you see other people lighting up around you or smell that iconic cigarette odor wafting in the air.
However, you can use prayer to practice self-control during times you normally have a cigarette. This is especially helpful when you’re around friends or coworkers who smoke and you want to resist temptation.
It helps you feel more capable of avoiding your addiction every day instead of giving into it just one time.
5. Prayer helps you keep a healthy routine and stay on track.
Smoking addiction can be so powerful, it becomes a constant presence in your life.
You might pick up your first cigarette of the day as you drink your morning coffee or right after you eat lunch. You may even smoke during breaks at work so you don’t feel disconnected from co-workers who are smoking outside, which is something you normally do with friends and family members.
The good news is that you can turn your focus away from your addiction when you pray. You can also use prayer to keep you from interrupting your day with a cigarette, which is especially helpful if you’re trying to quit during the work week or on the weekends.
You can also use prayer to remind you of the good habits you want to form during your recovery instead of focusing on what you’re struggling with or how much you miss smoking.
For instance, if you’d like to start working out more but haven’t yet planned your routine, you can pray for the motivation you need to get started.
Similarly, if you’d like to eat healthier or lose weight but don’t know where to begin, you can ask God each day for the strength and support you need to make healthy choices. Prayer helps you stay committed throughout your recovery, so it’s easier to stay smoke-free.
6. Prayer reminds you of how smoking affects other people.
When you’re addicted to smoking, you might not think much about how your habit affects other people.
For instance, you may focus on the cravings you feel when you see others lighting up or that momentary pleasure you get from holding a cigarette in your hands and taking a puff every few minutes.
However, prayer can help you see how you’re hurting those around you by smoking.
In many faiths and religions, your prayers are supposed to be for the betterment of yourself as well as others. You may find it helps you practice empathy when you think about how cigarettes impact other people in your life who don’t smoke or have loved ones who do.
For instance, you may worry you’re putting your child at risk for developing a smoking addiction when he or she is older. You might also think about how you don’t want to become the reason someone else stops trying to quit, which you can do through prayer and meditation.
Similar thoughts will likely come up during your prayers if you have close friends and family members you love who you don’t want to harm by smoking.
Prayer can help you recognize how your addiction affects other people, which makes it easier to focus on quitting for the right reasons and not just because you’re struggling with nicotine withdrawal symptoms or cravings that seem impossible to resist.
5 Quit Smoking Tools That Make Praying More Powerful
As powerful as prayer can be, you have to acknowledge that you are fighting a very difficult addiction. That’s why you should never rely on just one tool, but embrace the power of multiple tools working together for your success.
Here are five smoking cessation tools you can use in combination with prayer:
1. Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRTs)
This is probably the most widely-used smoking cessation tool you can find. NRTs come in many forms, including gum, patches, nasal sprays and e-cigarettes.
NRTs are very helpful in fighting off both physical and psychological cravings for cigarettes by replacing some of the nicotine you would have received from actual smoking. However, you need to make sure you get the right dosage of NRTs.
Also, you should always consult your doctor before taking any kind of medication or supplement for quitting smoking.
The last thing you want is an interaction between your quit-smoking aid and other medications you are currently using (e.g., antidepressants).
2. Mindfulness Meditation
Mindfulness meditation is a practice you can use to stay calm and focused, even when you are in stressful situations.
When you quit smoking, you will be exposed to many stressors that may trigger your cravings for cigarettes (e.g., driving in traffic). Mindfulness meditation can help you overcome them without thinking about lighting up again.
This practice also helps you get in touch with your feelings and emotions, which can be very helpful when you are trying to break free from the clutches of addiction.
Most smokers don’t realize that quitting smoking is a mental and physical process. Your mind and body will go through some changes when you quit, especially if you have been smoking for years or even decades.
Therapy can help you understand those changes better so you know how to manage your stress levels without relying on cigarettes as your crutch. Therapy can also help you discover what specific factors trigger your cravings and how you can better manage them.
4. Healthy Habits (e.g. exercise, good diet, etc.)
Now you can’t just expect your body to get rid of all that nicotine you’ve been putting inside you for years without making some serious changes in your lifestyle.
Exercise is a good way to start, so you should try starting with walking or running every day if it’s too hard doing intense workouts right away. Working out also helps you release those pent-up emotions you have been holding inside for so long, which can also contribute to your cravings.
Also, you should try eating a diet that is low in sugar and trans fats as these are proven triggers of cigarette cravings. Fresh veggies and fruits rich in antioxidants will help you cleanse yourself from all the toxins you’ve been taking in every day.
And you may also want to consider quitting alcohol, especially if you are drinking heavily. Alcohol is a depressant and not only can it make you crave cigarettes but it may even lead you back to smoking after you’ve already quit!
5. Hypnosis App
These apps can help you change your mental state by tapping into your subconscious mind and reprogramming it with positive messages about quitting without pain or suffering. You will find yourself finally able to live the smoke-free life you deserve.
There are many benefits you’ll get from using hypnosis for quitting smoking, including:
- It helps you relax your mind and body, which you will need when you are having cravings.
- It provides you with positive suggestions that can help you change your mental state about smoking and break the addiction for good.
- It’s convenient, and you can do it anywhere and anytime you need using only your phone.
- It’s affordable, has no side effects and is 100% safe.
- Hypnosis has been shown as one of the most effective ways to quit smoking long-term.
- It’s a natural way to quit smoking without having to rely on medication, which some may not be comfortable with.
Together, all of these tools can get you started on the path to recovery.
Remember: it’s never too late to quit, and you deserve to live a healthy, happy, and smoke-free life.
Can praying help you quit smoking?
Yes, it can, especially when you combine it with other smoke cessation tools, like counseling, NRTs, and a hypnosis app.
What kind of prayer should you do?
Any type you feel comfortable with can be effective.
How often should you pray to stop smoking?
Every time you have the urge to smoke is a good time to pray. You can also add prayer breaks to your daily routine.
Can you combine prayer and hypnosis to stop smoking?
Yes, you can, and many people have found it a safe and powerful combo for breaking their nicotine addiction.