Tracy’s smoking began following a surgery that left her bed-ridden for months. Cigarettes became a form of ‘stress control’ which she now reflects on as:

just a stupid thing because you know it really doesn’t do that but it’s very deceptive and you fool yourself
“I saw her personality and behaviour change during her illness and that was a real wake-up call. And seeing how things were for her during that period when she wanted to sneak out for a cigarette during Chemo, and I just thought this is crazy, this is how bad this stuff is.”

Ultimately, it was the loss of a close friend that inspired Tracy to reflect on the value of her own health and wellbeing and the life she wanted to lead. Having that perspective allowed Tracy to view smoking for what it really is, and motivated her to quit.

Feeling the impact of her recent loss and a newfound self-awareness around her health, Tracy decided to enlist the help of the Stop Smoking Service.

I was so desperate to stop so I didn’t want to do anything that might make me relapse…so I thought that some advice would be a good idea on how to cope with things and stuff like changing my behaviour and routines.

After deciding to explore how the Stop Smoking service could help, Tracy began her quit journey at the Lawson Practice clinic. It was here that Tracy found the one-to-one support offered by her stop smoking advisor key to her success. Fighting through the physical and emotional challenges of the first couple of days and weeks, Tracy reflected on the positive impact of her advisor:

It helped to have someone supporting me and that it (the service) was compassionate and caring and also that I was asked what would work for me and it was structured to suit me. The accountability is great…

After discussing with her advisor, Tracy decided that the best path forward for her was not to have NRT* support and to focus more on the advice and emotional support provided through her individual sessions.

Tracy’s advice to smokers

She feels it is important for patients to remain open-minded and to choose the path that makes most sense for their individual needs: “whatever you can do to help yourself and take the advice and support and let it all help you in whichever way works for you”.
Since quitting smoking, Tracy has felt inspired to share her quit journey with others and to encourage current smokers to consider their health by taking steps toward quitting.  

Go and have the conversation and see if you’re ready to stop smoking. It’s ok if you’re not ready now but the Hackney Smokefree team will be there when you’re ready. Have that conversation and open that door...

Since quitting, Tracy has enjoyed significant health benefits and looks forward to regaining the ability get on with life without the fear of nicotine withdrawal.

I think about getting on a plane and not having to worry about not being able to smoke and it is such a relief.

*Medication to help with addiction to nicotine called “Nicotine Replacement Therapy”

Quitting can make improvements to your lifestyle and health in ways you might not expect.

Smoking and your health›

Thinking about the reasons to quit is a great way to motivate yourself.

Why quit?›

Medications and nicotine replacement can double the chances of quitting smoking.

How to quit›