JAMA Says Monday is the Day for Quitting

campaign-participant_graphics_Q&SQMThe Journal of the American Medical Association, Internal Medicine reports that 25% more people search for information related to quitting smoking on Monday than all other days of the week—not just in English, but in French, Mandarin, Cantonese, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. Tapping into this collective mindset can impact programs designed to encourage quitting, according to Joanna E. Cohen, coauthor of the study and Director of the Johns Hopkins Institute for Global Tobacco Control.

Smokers often wait for special occasions like birthdays or New Year’s to quit, but most will relapse within a month. Studies show that it takes an average of 8-11 attempts to stop smoking for good. The intervening weeks can be a crucial time for smokers as they grapple with the physical, emotional and financial costs of their habit.

Monday offers a more sustainable solution. Rather than wait for an annual event to try quitting, smokers can take advantage of 52 Mondays every year, and the global support network that comes with them.

Organizations can use Monday to boost their smoking cessation programs through weekly check-ins with Quit Line counselors, online forums, and motivational messages sent through email, SMS and social media.

Smokers can use Monday as a day to quit, to recommit to their quit, or to quit again after a weekend relapse. Each Monday, smokers can plan for the week ahead by anticipating triggers and cravings for cigarettes. They can also look back on the previous week and use Monday as a day to reward themselves for staying quit. If a smoker has a “quit buddy” or counselor that she meets with to help her kick the habit, Monday is a good day to check-in about the smoker’s progress.

Please feel free to email our Public Health team directly about implementing Quit & Stay Quit Monday at [email protected].


NCI Issues Healthy Monday Challenge to Help Smokers Quit and Stay Quit

The National Cancer Institute’s smokefree.gov website used the Monday idea to encourage people to pledge Mondays as the day to quit and supported them with weekly motivational messages on its website, Twitter and Facebook.



Steuben County Public Health & Nursing Services

Steuben County, NY, is preparing to launch a Quit & Stay Quit Monday smoking cessation program in August 2013. The free program will include a weekly remote group counseling session via web conference, as well as a text messaging program to provide quit tips and encouragement outside of the counseling sessions.


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Three Rivers District Health Department

Serving the Kentucky counties of Carroll, Gallatin, Owen and Pendleton, Three Rivers used Quit & Stay Quit Monday to help increase participant engagement in its existing tobacco cessation program.



Syracuse University

Syracuse incorporated Quit & Stay Quit Monday into its umbrella Healthy Monday Syracuse campaign. The campaign continues to spread the Q&SQM message to local healthcare providers, businesses and community cessation group participants, as well as share the Quit & Stay Quit Monday “Tip of the Week” with its online audiences via email, Facebook, and Twitter



Northern Kentucky University

In preparation to declare a smoke-free campus, NKU will launch the Quit & Stay Quit Monday text messaging program for students, faculty and staff. The program will be used in conjunction with the university’s existing tobacco cessation program to help increase participant engagement.

Quit & Stay Quit Monday Research

A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association and jointly conducted by San Diego State University, The Santa Fe Institute, The Monday Campaigns and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that Monday is the day smokers are most likely to think about quitting. Key findings include:

Monday quit smoking query volumes are 25% higher than all of the other days of the week.

8 million more quit smoking searches per year were conducted on Mondays versus other days of the week.

Patterns were consistent in 6 languages (English, Chinese, French, Spanish, Russian, and Portuguese) showing a global collective mindset

These results are bolstered by other research supporting the efficacy of Monday as a day for quitting.

A 2011 survey by FGI showed that people view Monday, more than any other day of the week, as the preferred day to start a healthy behavior. The study specifically found that Monday is the most popular day to quit smoking.

A 2006 Australian study showed more calls to quit lines at the beginning of the week. This information can be used to inform the placement of advertisements for quit lines and other marketing strategies for increasing call volume.

An online poll of almost 7,000 people on The National Cancer Institute’s website smokefree.gov found that 53% of respondents indicated Monday was the best day to quit smoking.

To become a Quit & Stay Quit Monday pilot site, complete this survey: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/62MPVN7

Please feel free to email our Public Health team directly about implementing Quit & Stay Quit Monday at [email protected].