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Making a choice.  This may seem like a pretty obvious step, but it can also be hard to do: making the decision to actually stop smoking is the first step you need to take, and can be hard to find the motivation to do.


Most people have seen or heard about studies involving the benefits of quitting smoking during pregnancy, but it can seem like a huge gulf going from understanding information to actually leaping over the divide to finding the motivation to doing it.  So, we’re here to help you find ways to drum up the motivation and the ability to make the change in your life that will benefit both you and your baby.


For more help in finding motivation to quit smoking, join our facebook event.


Dr. Anders Eriksson, a researcher on motivation, found that motivation was a huge indicator of success in reaching goals.


quit smoking during pregnancy

“Your ability to find and maintain your motivation for meaningful and long-lasting change will ultimately determine whether you’re able to break long-standing habits and patterns” –Jim Taylor PhD

quit smoking during pregnancy

Even if your efforts begin well, many people hit a point where it seems incredibly difficult to pass.  It is at this point that many people will give up, because the rewards do not seem to outweigh the work or the pain involved.


But, for those who push past this point, the efforts are well worth it, especially as you reap the benefits of a healthier pregnancy and baby.


Embrace the Courage to Accept Yourself

Dr. Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD. describes a process called compassionate self-awareness.  This is a process that is used to help you find your strengths and weakness, and accept both of those as a part of yourself and a part of the human experience.


There are three steps to this process:

  1. Reflect on your strengths.  Call upon them in your current life when you remember them through out your day.
  2. Reflect on human weaknesses.  Do not spend more time thinking about this than your strengths.
  3. Reflect on how you are a combination of these your strengths and weakness learn to embrace them.

quit smoking during pregnancy

“By developing compassionate self-awareness, you are learning to maintain a more positive relationship with yourself even during stressful times. So, as you develop this skill, you will find that you are not only motivated to reach your goals, but you are able to support and encourage yourself to move toward them”-Dr. Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD

quit smoking during pregnancy


Reflect on Your Strengths


Reflecting on your strengths can help you find abilities and talents that you may have that will help you push past the point when you want to give up.  It allows you to delve into and find those things that you can put in your tool-box when you are in need of help, strength or courage.


Strengths can include things you have within yourself, like the ability to preserver.  Or it can be something external, like a great support network that can get you through the tough times.


Reflect on Your Weaknesses


This you may have to be cautious with, especially if you are used to beating yourself up with self blame.  So be gentle with yourself, but do take time to think about what areas of difficulties you may have, especially as that pertains to quitting.


This can be looking for things that you may be situational, like difficulty saying no when someone offers a cigerette to you.  Or it can be things that require more forethought in planning.  In any case, take this as an opportunity to lovingly guide yourself down a path of discovery that will allow you to understand what you may need in order to push through something difficult.


Reflect on how you are a combination of these your strengths and weakness learn to embrace them.


This is key in being able to combine strengths and weaknesses and using them to help you increase your motivation and ability to push past the tough part.  You have to love yourself, every bit of it, in order to do this.  This will also allow you to plan what you will do to reach your goal of quitting smoking.  It will help you find the tools you already have, and the resources you may need to look for.  Best of all it will provide you with the best reason to quit you can have; you (and your baby) are worth it, weaknesses and all.

For more Information on Pregnancy and Childbirth, Click for a Free 10 day access to our Childbirth Library. 


Personal Growth: Motivation: The Drive to Change

Finding the Motivation to Change

Follow Rachel Leavitt:

Rachel has worked as a register nurse (BSN from University of Utah) since 2004 with a work history in Labor and Delivery, NICU and Postpartum Care. She is also the founder of New Beginnings Doula Training which she organized in 2011. When she's not busy being a mother and grandmother, she can be found reading research papers related to some aspect of childbirth.

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