How to quit your addictions

A 10 percent tax hike on cigarettes has come into effect today, causing an influx of smokers wanting to kick the habit.

By 10:30am on New Year's Day, 100 people had called Quitline, New Zealand's smoking addiction helpline.

Quitline CEO Andrew Slater says January 1 is often their busiest day.

"So we're starting to see people waking up on New Year's Day and calling in," he says. "They've set that new year's resolution to be smoke free in 2018 and the calls are starting to roll in."

Bonnie Repia was chucking a hundred dollars a week at her habit. She quit smoking at midnight, determined to be a "brand new person" in 2018.

"Just to get away, to let go of that feeling of sickness, not being able to breathe properly."

While New Zealand aims to be smoke free by 2025, there are still plenty of other addictions we can fall prey to - thanks to the internet.

There's social media and the pleasant hit of "likes". Former Facebook executive Chamath Palihapitiya said in December that the "short-term dopamine driven feedback loops that we have created are destroying how society works."

But there's also pornography addiction, as well as gaming, recently recognised as a serious health condition by the World Health Organisation.

Christchurch coach and therapist Sahera Laing says most people are going about their goals for self-improvement in the wrong way.

"Most people are setting New Year's resolutions which are complete denial. 'I'm going to stop eating rubbish, I'm going to stop drinking, I'm going to stop smoking'."

She helps clients reach their goals, from completing the coast-to-coast to getting a promotion, by turning the negative into a positive.

"If you start thinking 'I'm actually going to be moving to a healthier or a clearer mind', you're not going to fail - you're going to build on successes."

She says people shouldn't feel pressured to reinvent themselves on January 1, and that any time's a good time to kick bad habits.