Nicotine Anonymous: 12 Steps for Cigarette Smokers


by Jeffrey Buckley

Updated: August 2, 2020

stepsf or Cigarette Smokers

Nicotine Anonymous: FAQ

  • What Is It?

    Nicotine Anonymous is a non-profit organization that is structured around the vaunted 12 Step Program that helps men and women who are committed to living nicotine free lives achieve their goals through group support and recovery. Nicotine Anonymous takes its model of recovery through spiritual awakening and abstinence from the original 12 Step Program created by the Alcoholics Anonymous group.

  • When Did Nicotine Anonymous Start?

    In the late 1980s, a group of nicotine addicts decided to rework the principles of the Alcoholics Anonymous program and apply them to breaking free of the nicotine addiction that they were all suffering from.

  • How Does Nicotine Anonymous Work?

    Participants in the Nicotine Anonymous program attend meetings on a regular basis (a meeting can be between two or more people) to talk, listen and gain experience on how to live a nicotine-free life. Beyond the 12 Step Program, the Nicotine Anonymous group embraces the added principles of H.O.W., which stands for Honesty, Openness and Willingness.

    • Honesty is used as the corrective to all the lies and excuses you made to yourself to justify using nicotine.
    • Openness readies you to accept the knowledge that is given to you not only by the program but by your fellow addicts, who will share with you their struggles and triumphs on their way to living nicotine-free.
    • Willingness stirs in you the necessity to change. Once you have begun to act in a different way you will discover new possibilities, generate a greater sense of optimism and move forward on your journey to be free of nicotine.
  • Are There Any Requirements to Join NA?

    There are no requirements or membership criteria to join a Nicotine Anonymous meeting other than wanting to quit nicotine for good.

  • Are There Any Costs Associated With NA?

    Participants choose to donate funds voluntarily, but there are no entry fees or charges to participate. All Anonymous Groups pride themselves on being self-sufficient.

Taking the First Step

Your first meeting will introduce you to the struggle that comes with trying, by yourself, to quit nicotine, which is a highly addictive substance. Through listening to all the other members of the NicA group you will feel inspired to surrender yourself to the guiding principles of the 12 Step Program and lets yourself be taken by its wisdom and all the help that has to offer.

The 12 Step program basically emphasizes that it take the place of your nicotine addiction. Instead of relying on nicotine to help you through life, Nicotine Anonymous offers you a way to focus on the ways you can free yourself of your addiction rather than focussing on the addiction itself. The group setting offers individual members the strength of each participant in terms of the hope and courage they show in continuing their recovery despite all the difficulties and temptations.

Nicotine Anonymous is quick to caution that recovery is a slow process and each member achieves a nicotine-free life only at their own pace. If you attend a Nicotine Anonymous meeting, you decide the level of your participation, but regardless of the breadth of your participation during a meeting, you are encouraged to study and practice the 12 Steps daily. The 12 Steps are what offer nicotine addicts the direction and hope to find a way to live nicotine-free.

The 12 Steps of Nicotine Anonymous

  1. Admit you are powerless over your addiction, and your life has become unmanageable.
  2. Believe that there is a higher power who can help put your life back on track.
  3. Make the decision to turn yourself over to God.
  4. Take a moral inventory of yourself and acknowledge your good and bad traits.
  5. Admit to God, others and yourself that you are not perfect.
  6. Ask God to remove the bad traits in your character.
  7. Ask God to change you and remove your anxiety, fears, dishonesty and anything else that might be considered a shortcoming.
  8. Compose a list of everyone you may have hurt in the past and what you can do to make things right.
  9. Go to each person you have hurt and ask for forgiveness.
  10. Continue to take a personal inventory of yourself every day.
  11. Pray and meditate regularly and ask for God’s will in your life.
  12. Help teach these same principals to others who are trying to recover from addiction.
Published: July 18, 2017Updated: August 2, 2020

Jeffrey Buckley

I was a smoker for over 25 years. In this time I also earned my medical degree with a specialization in addiction treatment and counseling. That period has led me to vaping, my interest started around 2011. I’m fighting the tide of hysteria and dis-information around vaping that emanates from various fronts legislative, cultural and scientific. Having scientific councils support, I’m happy to contribute my thoughts, articles, and expertise.


Leave a comment

5 comments on “Nicotine Anonymous: 12 Steps for Cigarette Smokers

  • anat

    August 25, 2022 at 6:51 am

    vaping is dangerous and costly a 12 steps pgm sponsored by vaping and advertising it breaks no sponshorship rule of the 12 steps organizations.

  • Mary ann Martinek

    August 8, 2022 at 12:04 pm

    I am, looking for 12 step meeting location in or near Edina

  • Ashwani kumar gaind

    September 16, 2019 at 5:47 am

    I m smoking for the last 35 years now i want to leave please help

  • Madz

    September 9, 2019 at 7:30 pm

    So in screwed as I’m a athiest.

  • bruce kane

    December 17, 2017 at 6:53 am

    I have been Smoker since June 16 2003. Vaping is like mainlining heroin compared to drinking a cough medicine . A cigarette contains nicotine, that’s the addiction. The habits of buying lighting flicking etc go away when you get off nicotine. The most highly addictive substance known to man. It’s used as a crop duster to kill bugs. Vaping is insane. Step 2 restores us. Check out how powerless vapors are. All the denial and habitual ceremonies are wrapped up in ” Kool”, just like ciggs we’re back in the day. One puff, one pack. One vape and your vaporized. The end