Cut The Habit



About 120,000 people in the UK try to give up smoking every day. We know the journey is tough but you are not alone. The internet provides many resources and support forums for people trying to give up (some of which are in our signposting section below).

Action Cancer's smoking cessation programmes are tailored to either adult or youth settings. They are run by trained smoking cessation counsellors who provide information and advice on quitting as well as exploring reasons for smoking and wanting to quit. These are available as either group or one to one sessions.

You can contact the health promotion team for further information or to book a smoking cessation programme by phoning 028 9080 3344 or e-mailing [email protected]

Below are a pick of some online resources that may help you on your way to becoming a non-smoker. Any others you feel we should know about let us know by emailing.

Visit the health promotion page to get healthy recipe ideas and find out more about our cancer prevention programmes. 

NHS Smokefree Website
You Can Stop Smoking NHS Scotland.
'KEEP THE FIRE' Nicotenell website


These are stories from people who have given up smoking and how they did it.

We hope by sharing your experience of how you gave up smoking for good you will inspire others to take that difficult journey.

Think of how you got through the first few difficult weeks. Tell us about any notable incidents or difficult times.

Contact us to tell us your story and if we think it will inspire others we will publish it live on this page.

Sinead said:

I have smoked since I was 10yrs old. I have hated the fact that I smoke for quite a few years and had 2 or 3 failed attempts at quitting. I am now 32yrs old and quit smoking 2 months ago with the help of a huge dose of willpower and a few patches. I am now free from the patch as i wanted all nicotine out of my body. I believe it is mind over matter, you have to be in the right place in your own head to quit, you need to plan and prepare yourself. It really helps to educate yourself on the facts of nicotine addiction and what you are really doing to your body everytime you choose to put a cigarette in your mouth. I was absolutely terrified of dying, I was afraid of ending up terminally ill with cancer and for my children to have to go through all that just because i chose to slowly kill myself. I don't want to be a weekly visit to the graveyard for my kids. There are so many things I want to do with my life and with my kids. I promised myself that this was going to be my year and I will keep that promise. The biggest difference I feel since I quit smoking, would have to be my confidence. If I can do this, I can do anything. The next would have to be more time as a family with my kids. I had such guilt trips in the early days of my quit when I realised how many times I put my kids off or sent them to their Dad because I was smoking or wanted a smoke! Even now the guilt pangs strike, that a cigarette was more important to me than my own kids. NEVER AGAIN! I would also recommend support groups, especially online as you can access them anytime. I joined and have found it to be invaluable in terms of moral support and advice as everyone there has been where I am now. I find it extremely helpful when i log in to see how many cigarettes I haven't smoked since I quit, right now approx 1000!! I have also saved over 1 week of my life, that's 7 extra days with my kids and my wonderful hubby! Thanks for reading my story. Sinead 
Roy said:

" I wanted to quit smoking for years but it never seemed like the right time. If it wasn't one excuse it was another. Recently I began to realise it would never be the "right" time, work always throws up challenges and personal life is never straightforward. So a few months ago I decided that was it, I'd had enough and signed up for the smoking cessation program at my local chemist. The first few weeks were tough, no doubt about it. Most of my little routines had to change so no coffee and cigarette at breakfast, no smoking on the way home from work and no cigarette after food. The craving could sometimes take control and I'd get nasty, I'd snap at people close to me, think the worst, hate my situation, blame myself and then blame everyone else. It was very scary to realise just how deep into my life the cigarettes had been and how much control they had over me. I started to see how so much of my time and behaviour was being monopolised by the desire to smoke. I was spending money on cigarettes that I needed for other things and inconvencing myself by setting up opportunities to have a quick smoke. The fact that I couldn't just forget about them infuriated me, how could they have so much power over me? Now they're gone I've started to develop new patterns and it's all been for the good. I'm spending more time with my friends and colleagues now rather than standing alone outside with my cigarette. I don't need to feel guilty anymore about smoking over other people and I don't have to worry about slowly killing myself. The best thing is that I get the satisfaction of leaving the dirty, expensive and ultimately fatal habit behind, it was really my enemy, it only seemed like a friend.

Lisa, from Ballycastle, has been off cigarettes for several months now. She says:

"I stopped smoking because I was fed up, the constant ashtray smoke in my hair and clothes, all day, every day. My yellow teeth didn't help my appearance either. I gave up only 3 months ago and feel like a different person, I did it cold turkey but have a packet of lozenges in my handbag on a night out just incase of a craving. I've taken up running and cycling and enter into adventure races and I've decided to do one leg of the Belfast marathon relay. I'm now looking forward to a more energetic and smoke-free life."

How addicted are you?

Take this short 5min test to find your level of addiction to cigarettes. Your first step towards a smoke free life.


Set a date

Choose the date you plan to no longer be a smoker, prepare and stick to it.


All that extra money!!

Without cigarettes you will have more money to spend on the things you love.


Download our smoking cessation leaflet with its 28 day guide to help you through that crucial first month giving up.