Image courtesy of faeryboots

I've made it one month without smoking. Unfortunately, I can't say that I've been completely smoke free. Over the past month, I've had a total of 2 cigarettes. Both times, I was out having some drinks with my friends. Once I had that one cigarette I was done and the cravings went away. I know I need to get better at avoid triggers that cause me to smoke and drinking is certainly a major trigger. Usually, a night of hanging out and drinking would result in me smoking at least half a pack.

Considering that I used to smoke at least 10 cigarettes a day, I must say that my quest to quit smoking is still on the right track. I was a little disappointed in myself after I slipped up the last time but thanks to some great inspirational comments on
that post, I felt a lot better.

I can already tell the positive changes in my body since I quit smoking. My sense of smell is a lot better now. One of my coworkers that sits next to me smokes and every time he comes back in from smoking, the smell is overwhelming. When I get in the elevator, I can tell if someone has been smoking. I wasn't able to smell this before and I must admit,
the smell is really bad. I wish some of my coworkers had told me had bad I smelled every time I came back from smoking.

Not only can I smell better, I can also breathe better. I am not longer winded after going up a couple of flights of stairs.
I can take a deep breath without my chest hurting. I can hold my breath for longer periods of time.

Even though I've slipped up a couple of times, I am still saving the $14.70 I determined I would be saving each week by not smoking. Right now, my NSSA (no smoking savings account) balance stands at $59.80. Technically, I'm still in the red because I am buying nicotine patches instead of cigarettes.

Using nicotine patches to quit smoking is a 3 step process. Each step consists of 14 patches per box. Each day, you put on one patch and wear it for 24 hours. After 24 hours, you apply a new patch in a different area of the upper body after 24 hours. Each box of patches cost around $28. I'm currently wrapping up step 2 and will moving on to the step 3 which is the final step. After that, I should be completely smoke free and there will no longer be any nicotine entering my body.

Related Posts:
Confession is good for the soul
Ready to Quit Smoking and Save Money


  1. Jennifer // February 16, 2009 at 10:16 AM  

    If it makes you feel any better, not everyone comes back from a smoke break smelling like they rolled around in an ash tray. My boss never did, and my coworker always comes up to relieve me straight from a smoke break and there are some days I don't smell it on him at all.

  2. Ashley @ Wide Open Wallet // February 16, 2009 at 10:50 AM  

    Big Huge Congratulations!!!!!

    Keep up the great work!

  3. Phil // February 16, 2009 at 11:04 AM  

    Just wanted to thank you for sharing this with us. I'm sure there are plenty of quit-smoking boards out there, but it's nice to read about your experiences as it relates to personal finance.

    The key word there is Personal. The stigma attached to smoking these days isn't always pleasant to receive, and as a non-smoker-wannabe myself, admitting one has an addiction is part of the process.

    Congrats on your progress! and thanks for the candor.

  4. Amanda // February 16, 2009 at 11:14 AM  

    First, congratulations! This is a huge achievement! I joined you on the non-smoking trail, & I certainly have had a few slips. In the past, I would just give up & start smoking again, but I've used the slips as an opportunity to learn about my triggers & my propsensity towards letting things overwhelm me on tough issues.

    Quitting smoking not only vastly improves your health, it can make you a better person. I quit & made a 101 goals in 1001 days list. I can honestly say my life has done a 180 in 2 weeks by just doing a few of my goals & getting out of my comfort zone. It also gets your mind of smoking!

    Keep on truckin'. : )

  5. Jeff@StretchyDollar // February 16, 2009 at 11:15 AM  

    Woo! Alright! That's great news - we're behind you all the way.

  6. from the desk of // February 16, 2009 at 11:18 AM  

    congratulations. you should be so proud of yourself.

  7. J. Money // February 16, 2009 at 12:20 PM  

    well done, boss! i bet it feels freakin' incredible :) and the whole "smelling better" is a funny one to me. for some insane reason, i LOVE the way smoke smells on women, even though the thought of them smoking turns me off...oh well, doesn't really apply here since a) you're a dude, and b) i'm a weirdo for thinking this stuff! haha..

    Congrats though, keep it up!

  8. Anonymous // February 16, 2009 at 1:25 PM  

    Congrats! You also have great timing.

    I am on Day 8 of cold turkey. It's rough. Does it get easier? I hope so.

    I'm in that withdrawal fog so I cant even focus on money I am saving and see it as a bonus I'll enjoy eventually.

    I've gotten good support at, in case you want to check them out.


  9. Anonymous // February 16, 2009 at 4:28 PM  

    Congratulations! It is a huge achievement to quit smoking. I quit almost 5 years ago (which I still can't believe) by using the patches and quitnet. I set aside the money, too, and after a year I was able to buy a plane ticket to Germany!

    I am now tackling my horrible addiction to sugar....and so far, to me, it's as bad as quitting smoking.

    Good luck!

  10. Mominem // February 16, 2009 at 6:36 PM  

    Good job, SGM! I've tried the patches, but never could get them to stay lit! LOL

    Keep at it and don't beat yourself up too much if you slip. The key is not to keep slipping (kinda like sticking to a budget!)

    Good luck!


  11. Carrie // February 16, 2009 at 6:52 PM  

    Congrats! That's awesome. I find that drinking always hurts my bank I could see how it could hurt your quitting smoking.

    I sit next to a lady that smokes! It's horrible! She's sweet but hacking up a lung all day! There is something you can look forward to - not hacking when you're older. :)

    Good Luck!

  12. SingleGuyMoney // February 16, 2009 at 7:32 PM  

    @Everyone - Thanks so much for the positive comments

    @J. Money - You crack me up man!

    @FW - Congrats on 8 days! It does get easier. I wish I could tell you that the cravings go away but I'd be lying to you.

    @Mominem - LOL, I will certainly have to use that one!

    @Carrie - Yeah, not hacking up a lung is certainly an added bonus.

  13. laneerg // February 17, 2009 at 12:34 AM  

    Congratulations on one month of no smoking - even with slip ups.

    I'm working on my goal of no soda, and almost made it two months - but slipped up recently.

  14. frugalCPA // February 17, 2009 at 9:30 AM  

    I'm impressed that you've seen such great results so quickly! Congrats!

  15. FromThe Creek // February 17, 2009 at 11:10 AM  

    I was amazed at how much I did not like the taste of smoking when I did slip up and cheat! Congratulations!

  16. Chris // February 17, 2009 at 3:58 PM  

    COngratulations on getting this far. My theory (from my own experience quitting) is quitting comes in stages of 3. 3 hours, 3 weeks, 3 months and 3 years. WHen you get through though milestones it gets easier every time.

    While nicotine addiction is one thing, the habit of smoking was the bigger one for me. Drinking, driving, after meals etc. Change those habits for a bit relieves that urge.

    Not only do you not smell of smoke anymore, but look at your nice sweaters and shirts and see the tiny burn holes in your clothes, or tar stains, or yellowness to white clothing. Keep up the good work!

  17. Maria // February 17, 2009 at 6:35 PM  

    Hey way to go! You'll save a bundle on health insurance, life insurance, etc over the years, too!

  18. Scott @ The Passive Dad // February 18, 2009 at 2:02 PM  

    Way to go! Have you noticed that food tastes different for you now that you quit? I recall my dad saying that his taste buds changed when he quit. Things became more flavorful.

  19. Corrie at "Cents"able Momma // February 18, 2009 at 3:28 PM  

    Great job...keep it up!

  20. brainy // February 18, 2009 at 8:15 PM  

    Way to go!

    Can't say that I was one who left an "inspirational" comment when you slipped up last month -- I was more of a jerk -- but I'm glad to hear that you've now apparently kicked the habit for good -- or you're at least on the cusp of giving them up for good.


  21. BioTecK // February 20, 2009 at 1:17 AM  

    10 cigarettes a day? That's actually nothing compared to what I used to smoke..I smoke a package a day!

    Anyway, It's almost more then 3 years ago since I quit smoking and when I think about it...I don't know why I was so stupid to smoke!
    I'm so glad that I've quit smoking! :D

    Anyway... Good luck.. You don't need that sh*t!

  22. Emily Retherford // February 20, 2009 at 8:26 AM  

    Wow that's great! I really need to quit, the last time I did I only lasted 3 weeks though, I plan to do it again real soon! Great work!

    Mama and Hustler???
    My Mommy Chronicles
    Am I Really a Writer?
    From the Mind of a Caffeine Junkie

  23. Grandy // February 21, 2009 at 3:48 AM  

    Congratulations!!! This is a great accomplishment!!

  24. Rebecca Rodgers // February 21, 2009 at 1:29 PM  

    I'm still a day behind you on the quitting smoking!

    30 days=$200 saved!
    Ok you see what happened was...I went shopping. :)

    Congrats to you on 30 days!
    Now give up the patch.

  25. Jennifer @ Money Saver 101 // February 22, 2009 at 2:29 AM  

    Congratulations! That's a huge step for your wallet and your health. Keep up the good work!

    My husband has said he plans to quit once we are settled into our new home. Here's hoping!

  26. SingleGuyMoney // February 22, 2009 at 10:03 AM  

    @Rebecca: Congratulations to you too! I am on my last stage with the patch and I have about 8 more days to go until I'm completely done.

    @Scott: I haven't really noticed a difference in the taste of food but my sense of smell has certainly gotten better.

  27. Funny about Money // February 23, 2009 at 10:16 AM  

    Good work!

    You have no idea how happy you will make the people who love you. I worried nonstop after my son took up smoking -- his grandmother died hideously at the hands of the nicotine peddlers -- and I rejoice every single day since he succeeded in quitting.

    Hope you use the savings to buy yourself a wonderful reward. A friend who kicked the killer weed (tobacco, that is, grass being rather benign in comparison) squirreled away all the money he would have spent on cigarettes and after a full year of freedom, he bought himself a gorgeous stereo system. This was back in the dark ages when stereo systems were expensive and were housed in even more expensive pieces of furniture.

  28. Anonymous // February 25, 2009 at 10:00 PM  

    Tomorrow will be Day 9 for me. It actually hasn't been that bad as far as cravings go, but I realize now how much I really like to smoke. The gum has been good for me in that it alleviates the nicotine jones and the oral fixation simultaneously.


  29. shoolz // March 31, 2009 at 12:00 AM  

    The way that I quit was to follow the "cigarette timer" method that this guy writes about:

    Originally I used the tip to just save a few bucks each month, but I found that it worked so well that after a while I decided to quit all together!

    I am now quit since October 2006!!!

  30. Anonymous // December 19, 2009 at 8:36 PM  

    The best way to quit is to have the mindset that under no circumstances am I going to buy a pack of cigarettes again. Stick with it and you will transform into a non-smoker.