The smokefree self: A phenomenological exploration of smoking cessation
Arran Woodhouse Acting Service Lead, Havering Stop Smoking Service, Romford
This study reports on the individual's experience of smoking cessation in relation to their sense of self. The study sought to explore how the individual experienced a desire to quit smoking and know that it was ‘the right time’. Previous research on current smokers reported a conflicted self that experienced health problems attributed to smoking, yet was unable to quit despite the desire to be smokefree.
This study aimed to understand how the conflict is resolved or mediated resulting in a quit attempt. Two semi structured interviews were carried out with two female participants who had recently attended stop smoking sessions at a local pharmacy and had successfully quit smoking. Data from the interviews was analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA). Four themes were identified in the analysis, the transition to the smokefree self, managing ambivalence, perception of time as a smoker and the self in relation to others. This study reports on how these four themes were experienced by the two participants.
Arran is the Acting Service Lead for the Havering Stop Smoking Service and was previously the Hospital Stop Smoking Specialist in the same organisation. He is a psychologist and has been working in smoking cessation for ten years.