The things I read online helped me when I was quitting, so I wanted to share how things went/are going for me. I quit more or less cold turkey. I went from 50+ pieces of nicotine gum to 1 piece a day for 2 days, and then 0 since. The first 5 days are the worst. After that, it gets pretty easy, though there are still some things to be wary of. The thing that helped me the most was eating, exercise, sleeping and thinking about sunk costs. Whenever I ate I stopped feeling a lot of the craving type withdrawal symptoms. Exercise helped with the anxiety and stressed out feelings. Exercise was also helpful because it made me tired. I slept a lot the first few days. I had read that the first 72 hours were the worst so I figured I would try to sleep through as much of that as possible. That worked pretty well. Thinking about sunk costs basically means that I thought if I chew more nicotine gum now, I will have gone through all this hassle and trouble and withdrawal symptoms for nothing. I kept thinking to myself, just make it to 72 hours and it will get better. Having a light at the end of the tunnel was a big help psychologically, and I can say for me it did get much easier and it didn't take all that long really. For me, the symptoms were bad for about 5 days instead of 3 days, but that may have been because the first two days I chewed one piece of nicotine gum. I don't think the weening process is the way to go. Also, I quit coffee the first few days which helped by making me more tired, so I could sleep through the worst of the withdrawal symptoms. I think it helped keep the jitters down as well.
About 10 days after I quit I would basically forget that I even quit - it had become fairly easy. I think that I still have some more subtle symptoms. I have been really active and have been achieving a lot of various things. That sounds kind of weird but maybe I could say I just have a lot more motivation than I used to. I also have more drive. I have a strong desire to change my life, though that may be something else, and might be why I quit the nicotine gum anyway. I have also had a deep depression and feeling more hopeless at times than I have in years. This is not all the time, but it will come up from day to day where I just feel terrible, depression wise. My concentration levels and ability to focus are kind of crappy.
I am pretty happy I quit, and it was a lot easier than I thought it would be. I feel like I wish I would have quit years ago. I would say I think quitting cold turkey is the way to do it. I think if you try to ween yourself off of nicotine, all you are really doing is prolonging the agony of withdrawal. I think if you can just get through say 3 to 7 days without any nicotine the withdrawal symptoms should ease up.