Newswise — NEW YORK – On November 21, people from across the country will participate in this year’s Great American Smokeout (GASO), “Day 1” of their journey toward a smoke-free life. Deciding to quit is a major step forward, but research shows that it may take current smokers an average of 30 attempts before they successfully quit smoking for a year or more.
So how does one remain committed to the quit in the weeks and months following GASO? Use the power of Mondays to stay on track.
A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Internal Medicine (JAMA) found that more people conduct Google searches about quitting smoking on Monday than any other day of the week, amounting to 8 million more searches each year. Joanna Cohen, PhD, Director of Johns Hopkins’ Institute for Global Tobacco Control, says, “Monday is like the January of the week, and can be used as a great cue to quit smoking and help people stay quit. Studies show that smokers are looking for help on Mondays so there’s a natural opportunity to engage them.”
Quit and Stay Quit Monday (QSQM), a tobacco cessation tool designed by The Monday Campaigns in collaboration with the Institute for Global Tobacco Control and the Lerner Center for Public Health Promotion at Johns Hopkins University, incorporates this philosophy to help people quit smoking, re-quit smoking, or recommit to quitting smoking every Monday.
With individuals and tobacco cessation professionals in mind, QSQM developed a “Monday Quit Kit” to help quitters stay on track over the long haul. Several health departments are already using Quit and Stay Quit Monday resources to improve the rate of smoking cessation within their communities:
Virginia Department of Health (VA): Implemented a 12-week campaign promoting the adoption of a tobacco-free workplace that reached more than 135,000 employees.
Pima County Health Department (AZ): Extended their QSQM program to continue to drive engagement with the state’s quitline, which serves largely Spanish-speaking and Native American populations.
Tobacco Free Amarillo (TX): Launched a multimedia QSQM campaign to enhance their tobacco cessation program and encourage residents to utilize the state’s quitline. The campaign includes six billboards along the busy Interstate 40 highway.
Interested in implementing a Quit and Stay Quit Monday program within your community or organization? Visit iquitmonday.org to learn more or share the Monday Quitter Six Step Process:
- Commit to quit on Monday
- Get your quit-plan down on paper (or a note on your smartphone)
- Connect with the QSQM community or find a “quit buddy”
- Conduct a weekly Monday recap with the QSQM Check-in Guide
- Celebrate progress (you earned it)
- If you fall off the horse, don’t sweat it and try again
Quit and Stay Quit Monday is part of The Monday Campaigns public health initiatives that offer science-based weekly tips, recipes and other inspiration to help people start and sustain healthy behaviors. The Monday Campaigns works in association with The Lerner Centers for Public Health Promotion at Johns Hopkins, Columbia and Syracuse universities. The initiatives of The Monday Campaigns dedicate the first day of every week to health, and support a global movement of individuals and organizations committed to public health and ending preventable diseases.