Obama: Still Smoking Cigarettes
On Sunday's Meet the Press, Barack Obama admitted to interim-moderator Tom Brokaw that he was still smoking cigarettes - though he didn't specify exactly how much.
Mr. Obama had said he quit smoking at the beginning of his campaign for president, in early 2007. But he later admitted to having “bummed” cigarettes from others, and last week he told Barbara Walters that he had “fallen off the wagon.”
On Sunday, Mr. Brokaw pressed Mr. Obama as to whether he had actually quit.
“What I would say is, is that — that I have done a terrific job, under the circumstances, of making myself much healthier,” Mr. Obama replied, suggesting that he had at least cut back while running for the most high-pressure job in the world.
As for whether he might break the ban on smoking at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Mr. Obama said that “I think that you will not see any violations of these rules in the White House.” (Like a good politician, he left some wiggle room, not making an outright commitment to quit for good, suggesting merely that he would not smoke in the Executive Mansion.)
Just because Obama has said he won't violate the no-smoking rules in the White House, doesn't mean he's resolved to kick the habit for good. Here are some tips that might help Barack Obama, and other smokers, finally quit once and for all:
- join a support group.
- find nicotine alternatives - gum, patches, sprays, etc.
- alternative therapies like acupuncture may reduce cravings; hypnosis may also help you quit.
- distract yourself when you have an urge for a cigarette - take a walk, call a friend - and wait it out.
- try picking up a new habit, such as knitting or (gasp!) exercise.
- remind yourself of the reasons you want to quit - write them down, and keep this list with you. Read it when you feel like smoking.
- identify times when you most feel like smoking, and then avoid those activities for the first couple weeks of quitting.