Analyzing Gambling Addiction:
A. The Truth;
Anything that is too much can be fatal. Even healthy foods that are excessive to body are no longer healthy. Entertainment and fun is not harmful unless it exceeds the limit for just being fun and entertaining. Gambling for example would be no longer being fun and entertaining when already causes problems, whether that problem is so simple and small or a major problem that leads to pain and misery. Poker, blackjack, roulette, slots and many other casino games are very enticing to play; you would greatly experience the enjoyment once you started to bet on these games or even betting for sports or any other forms of gambling. But everyone should be aware of their limitations to everything that they engaged themselves to, especially to gambling because this may lead to addiction. Addiction means, obsession to something you misunderstood as fun and exciting. It is a behavioral problem towards unhealthy habits or a mind-disorder for something you crave for. Anyone addicted to gambling can no longer control his own desire to gamble but never get me wrong when I say that they still know what they are doing; it is just that they no longer have the guts to overpower their cravings over gambling.
B. The Consequence;
And what is more appealing to this problem is that, gambling addicts know that what they are doing is already painful for their love ones, already a threat to their careers, and already very unhealthy for their psychological and financial catastrophe but cannot do something about it because they only think of gambling and nothing else. Yes, no matter what the consequences are, gambling addicts would gamble no matter what emotions they are carrying, whether happy or sad, the only thing that is important to them is gambling. If you are a compulsive gambler, (another term for gambling addicts) you would not notice and you would actually be surprised because you can do a lot of things that you never thought you can do, things that did not enter your mind that you will do, such as stealing just to pay your debts, you would even sell your body if you can just to sustain your cravings to gambling, or worst, you would pawn your soul to Satan. We have known a lot of famous people who almost lost everything because of the addiction to gambling, sometimes even their own life. But never think that if you are a gambling addict, you will remain that way for the rest of your life. There are actually ways on treating this kind of illness, you will just have to accept that you have a problem because no one can help you if even you do not accept this problem.
C. The Excuses;
You actually never treated gambling addiction as a problem because according to you, that you can afford to gamble. This is very wrong because we are not talking only about money matter here, your time, your effort and your relationships to your family and friends may put at risk because of your excessive gambling. You may say that you are not a gambling addict because you are not gambling every day. Hey, you don’t have to gamble everyday to become a gambling addict, it is not measured on how frequent you gamble, and gambling is already a problem when it causes another problem. Never say that you are now a gambling addict because someone pushes you to be like that, like your wife being so nagger, your family being so unsupportive to you or even friend who happens to be another gambling addict, you may say that he forced you to gamble that is why you are gambling, that would be the most stupid alibi of all alibis. Because God gave you your own heart to feel and be felt, and your own brain for you to decide for your own destiny, so no others would be blame for your own mistake. It is actually you who made yourself like that and no one else can help you better than yourself. And never ever blame life’s poverty on your addiction to gambling and do not say that you just wanted to win a huge amount of money and change your life for the better because this would not happen, this would just push you deep down to more poverty and misery. Yes, we experience bad things, we got depressed, we are not happy all the times; anxiety seldom attacks us and we are often scared for our future, but these do not logically rationalized our doings especially if we are already ruining our own lives. We cannot solve problems by creating another problem, we just need to stay focus on our goals in life and be challenged positively on any emotions that we have.
D. The Signs;
Physically, no one can notice that you are having a behavioral problems regarding gambling, it’s not like a bacterial disease which leaves a mark on your skin or it is neither a virus that is contagious nor hereditary. So no one would be able to say to you that you have a gambling problem because you forgot to tie your shoelace or just because your button is unzipped. It would take a deeper analysis on your behavior before someone can conclude that you are a gambling maniac, except of course your family and your friends who are directly affected by your misbehaving. But even though your love ones already had the idea of your hidden illness, it is still you and only yourself who would confirm that you are not well and you are in a great danger for being a gambling addict. You may deny that you are encountering this problem, or you may minimize the outcome of your doings, but be also aware that this could not be solved if you just keep the problem to yourself.
E. The Symptoms;
Anyway, you would need professional help whether you accept it or not if you experience the following gambling addiction related symptoms.
- No Stopping – if you notice that your urge to gambling is getting bigger and bigger. At first, you will give yourself 10 minutes more in staying on the table or in any gambling room, then after ten minutes, you will give another ten for yourself until you spent whole day in gambling beside the time of your limit.
- Beyond Entertainment – An ordinary gamer plays for fun, usually to fill up spare time, to socialize with friends and would spend a certain limited amount just to relax and entertain himself, but if you feel you like to gamble because anxiety attacks you, or because you had an argument with your spouse or to your friend, or you were not able to meet the deadline given to you by your boss, then you had a problem.
- Being Enigmatic – if you feel that you need to keep your “hobby” to others even to your own family because they would not understand you. You would never tell them how much you had spent in gambling because you feel that they would be pissed off towards you.
- Running after your loses – if you can’t control putting a wager in bigger amounts just to run after your loses, you have a problem in gambling. This means that you had lost 5 dollars and you are again wagering 10 dollars to get even, then lost again and put 20 dollars again and so on and so forth. As an expert gambler, you should know that this won’t work but still you do it because of your addiction.
- Gambling Priority – if you believe that you always have the spare time to gamble rather than doing more important things, you have a problem. Or you would steal some time in the middle of doing necessity; this would mean that you are not with yourself because you are thinking of gambling.
- Becoming Resourceful Unjustly – meaning if you are doing a lot of things that you are not used to do just to sustain your gambling addiction, such as borrowing money from friends, selling important things or worst stealing money from others, this would lead to a more serious problems and would enhance the probability of suicide.
F. The Self Treatment;
Though some do not consider this as a disease, it is still important to know some of the ways or options that may help someone who is encountering this problem. But let me reiterate that what would be mentioned on this treatment may not be suitable to other gambling addicts as just like anyone else in general, gambling addicts are different from each other and no two gamblers are exactly the same, may just the situation. So if a gambling addict really wanted a recovery, he should look for some strategy treatment best suitable for himself.
- First and foremost, you need to admit that you are having a problem and acknowledge that you yourself can no longer handle the situation. I know that you will need a bunch of strength and courage to do this but if you would be able to do something that would probably disseminate your bad hobbies yourself, it is better, as what is mentioned above that no one would be able to help you better than yourself. But if you believe that you’re problem is no longer just gambling but more on to yourself, then you desperately need professional.
- Money Management is also important in dealing this kind of problem, if you cannot control spending your money in gambling, better ask someone to do the job for yourself. Entrust your financial matters to anyone close to your heart because you cannot gamble if you don’t have the money. Assign your bank to pay your bills automatically and keep very limited amount on your pocket.
- Time Management – if you think you have a lot of spare time and you always use these times to gamble, switch your mind to something else that is worthwhile. Plan a get together party for friends or an outing for the family. You will not be able to gamble if you do not have enough time for this. Watch a movie or get yourself busy with household chores.
- Gambling Environment Free – meaning distance yourself to anything that is gambling related. Stop seeing people with the same habits, assign someone to remind you every time you are tempted to gamble and request that people to talk to the operator of the gambling establishment to ban you from betting as you are under behavioral therapy.
- Look for Professional Help – if you think all the above self-cure are so much difficult to achieve, this means that your problem is not just gambling per se. This may involve psychological matters and would need a corresponding professional treatment.
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