Love Gambling

It’s a Gamble! Gambling – Great? Gruesome? Gambling – Essential, Addictive, Destructive

Love gamble, love tangle

I’ve got all that I can handle

Love

I’m used to thinking of gambling as horrible. Every day I hear stories of people destroying their lives, and the well-being of their families, because they can’t stop gambling. Everything goes. A woman speaks from her prison cell: she turned to robbing banks to pay for her addiction. She doesn’t excuse herself. But she couldn’t help herself. She wanted to be arrested. Despair.

I’ve been thinking about gambling differently this past while. Not “pure gambling” (lottery tickets, casinos, online gambling). But gambling as an essential feature of healthy, hopeful living that takes us beyond the routine.

My partner and I are building a business. Now, that’s a gamble – with our time, our lives. I’m also building this site – Elsa’s Creativity Emporium. Another huge gamble with time, energy, creativity. Columbus sailed for America. His gamble: that he would end up in the Far East. He didn’t get was he was aiming for – but the gamble paid off for the Europeans.

Farmers plant seeds. The gamble: that the season will be good. Designers design The gamble: that the design will find a market.

People fall in love, and decide to try to make a live with that person – one of the biggest gambles in life.

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On the other hand, many people want a predictable salary. No gambling, please. So and so much an hour. Anything else feels wrong, out of control, dangerous. How can anyone live like that, they shudder and recoil.

An observation. Many people don’t want to gamble with work time. They want steady dependable pay. At the same time, they have a hugely developed urge, even an overwhelming urge, to gamble.

In other words, quite a number of the same people who want a steady paycheck spend a huge chunk of their everyday earnings on gambling!

“It’s just for fun.” “It’s my right.” “I have every right to do what I want with my money. I earned it, after all. It’s mine.” “Everyone’s entitled to have a good time every now and then. All those hours I work. I deserve something.”

So, though many people are entirely unable to consider working “on a gamble,” (building a business, doing creative projects that may well never pay), they gamble over and over in ways that are set up to make the huge majority of people lose.

But most of the world does live “on a gamble” – or combining the gamble with as much certainty as possible. Traditional gatherer-hunting societies for instance have the relative dependability of gathering (which brings in about 90% of food) and the gamble on what is brought in through hunting (10% of the average food supply, according to my reading). Even with the gathering part, no year is like any other year. The steady dependable pay-off (salary, berries, etc.) is not the norm.

And with that, back to gambling. I’m going to call the kind of gambling I’m used to recoiling from “pure gambling” – in other words, one isn’t gambling that the weather will cooperate with one’s efforts, one isn’t trying to make a sale, one isn’t trying to build a site or a business, one isn’t courting and hoping another will respond to us. “Pure gambling” – bingo, casinos, lotteries, slot machines, computer games like minesweeper and so on. The goal is winning in a game stacked against us, and the win builds nothing except the win. No book is written, no grain is harvested, nothing is built.

In everyday gambling – which I’ll call “part-of-life gambling”, the pleasure of winning is part of so many other things. It’s part of building a life – gambling that our reaching out to someone will pay off, gambling that our design will find a market, gambling that the move to another city where there are supposed to be better jobs will lead to a better job.

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In “pure gambling,” all that other stuff has been taken out. The goal: the win. The goal: the payoff. In some forms of “pure gambling”, one does build some skills – one learns to play bingo well, to know the ins and outs of computer games. One becomes fast, the moves automatic. In other forms of pure gambling, people just, say, pull the arm of a one-armed bandit – and the craving to keep doing this that be so strong that people have resorted (or so I’ve heard) to wearing diapers so they don’t need to leave to go to the bathroom.

I’ve felt the pull of pure gambling, as well as part-of-life gambling. The time: about ten years ago. Too much stress. One day, I opened minesweeper, a computer game, and played a few games. The stress disappeared. I ended up playing minesweeper for several days, getting better and better. Wonderful and relaxing. At some point, I couldn’t get better at minesweeper. From that point on, winning or losing (most often losing), became a matter of luck. And yet I still wanted to play. Very much so.

I did what was easiest for me to do: I asked my partner to take the game off my computer (at the time I didn’t

Gambling Addiction

Gambling Addiction: What to Look For

Gambling addiction is an impulse-control disorder. It is a compulsive behavior that the person has lost control over. A compulsive gambler can think of nothing else, only gambling. Even when the gambler begins to hurt himself, or his family, he cannot quit gambling. Even when the gambler has nothing to bet and the consequences would be extreme if he lost, a gambling addict will continue to gamble.

Like other addictions, such as drug or alcohol addictions, a gambling addiction usually stems from something else in the person’s life. Often when an individual is feeling upset, depressed or angry over something in his life, gambling may present itself as an outlet, seeming like a low-key way to relax and check out from life for a minute or two. From there a habit begins to form, and the individual turns to gambling to escape stresses in life–be it an argument with a spouse or friend, a layoff at work, loss of a family member and so on.

There are a few things an individual can look at to see if he does, in fact, have a gambling addiction:

Do you have trouble controlling your gambling?

Do you think about it all the time?

Do you gamble when you do not have any more money?

Do you feel the need to be secretive about your gambling?

Are family members trying to tell you that you have an addiction?

Are you defensive when people ask you about your gambling?

Keep the above in mind when evaluating whether you, a family member or friend has a gambling addiction. Someone who is addicted to gambling will go through great lengths to hide their addiction. For instance, they may hide information about finances, or begin to lie about where they have been.

When these symptoms become apparent in the life of someone around you, it is critical to get them treatment right away. Gambling addiction can have terrible negative effects on family, finances, friendships and personal health.

If you are the one struggling with a gambling addiction do not hesitate to seek support. Take the steps necessary to protect yourself and those around you by finding a treatment center.

An addiction treatment center can help a patient with a gambling addiction cope with the issues of life, giving them alternative means to deal with the stress. Many find frequent exercise, time with family and friends or time spent learning a new activity or hobby distracts them from their desire to gamble and helps to ease their impulses. If you do suffer from a serious problem, or have a friend that you feel poses a threat to themselves or others due to their addiction, it is best to immediately seek out an addiction treatment center to get medical help and begin the path to recovery.

Gambling Addiction Cure

Gambling Addiction Cure – One Day at a Time

While many people will argue that there is no cure for a gambling addiction, I disagree. I think the problem may be one of semantics or expectations. First of all, let’s make sure we agree on the term, cure. By cure, I mean a cessation of the symptoms and return to normalcy in life.

For instance, when you have the flu or a cold, you say you are cured when the cold or flu goes away and you can return to your normal way of life and do things you did before the sickness. It doesn’t mean that you will never have a cold or flu again and it certainly doesn’t mean you are impervious to those problems. It just means that, for the moment, or day, you aren’t incapacitated by sickness.

Many twelve step programs use the simple but powerful affirmation, “One day at a time.” It is a way of breaking down the daunting task of controlling a life long problem by tackling it just for today. It is a way of saying, “Just for today I will not gamble. I will live my life and take care of the people I love and do my job the best I can.”

It doesn’t mean that you are not susceptible to gambling or that you will never feel its powerful pull, it simply means that you are not gambling today and you are doing the things you have to do or want to do for the people who depend upon you, including and especially, you yourself.

Therefore, if you did not gamble today, when you go to bed, you may say to yourself, “Today I was cured and did not gamble. Tomorrow is another day and I will have to live it and face the challenges of the day when it comes, but for now, this day that is coming to a close was a good day for me, because I did not gamble.”

Life is a day to day struggle for every person who lives on this planet, whether we realize it or not. It isn’t just difficult or dangerous for people with addictions, but for everyone. Our bodies and psyches are constantly bombarded with germs and challenges that we must overcome. You may survive cancer only to contract it again. You may solve your financial problems, only to have the economy tank and lose everything.

There are no guarantees in life and if you are trying to live it one day at a time, take heart in the knowledge that whether they realize it or not, the rest of the people in this world, even if they never heard that phrase or sat through a 12 step meeting, are doing exactly the same thing. Though we all would like the assurance that once we face a problem and solve it for a day, it would never return, life doesn’t work that way, we all truly live it from sunrise to sunrise

Gambling Addiction

Gambling Addiction

A friend of mine who is a great high school basketball coach once told me “The best you can have happen in a game is to have the other team’s worse shooter make his first shot – very similar to the confidence you feel with a gambling addiction. They will think they are a good shot and keep throwing upshots and missing them. But they keep shooting because they made the first one.” This same attitude got me addicted to gambling. The thought that what happened once, by pure luck, was going to keep happening and I could control it. Instead of walking away and being content with a little good fortune, I stuck around long enough to prove his statement true, not for basketball, but gambling.

I got into gambling which resulted in my gambling addiction the same way people get into it. My friends and I would play cards when we were in high school for a few dollars. The feel of winning, even back then was a rush. That feels better than any drug. Other people may get this feeling through exercise, the runner’s high, or closing a big deal at work. The difference between their feeling and the one I got was the high, or sense of accomplishment. The difference between myself and the friends, I play cards for entertainment and fun. They may have had that same feeling I did, but they didn’t let the feeling overtake their mind and way of life. They, like most people, realized if they won, they were lucky. Sure there is a tactics, but in gambling, it is better to be lucky than good.

I have been gambling, with a gambling addiction, and going to casinos since I was eighteen years old. Back then, you only had to be eighteen to gamble at casinos. Back then I would take the money I got from working around the house or a part-time job and I would head down to the casino on Friday night after school. What I won or lost would dictate how the whole next week would go until I receive payment. If I won, that next week was fun. Most of the times though I am scrambling for extra work for money or borrowing from friends. I wish I could look back and laugh and say man I was just young and stupid. The problem is it got a whole lot worse and the thinking did not change. Feast or famine was the way I lived my life.

Sex, Drugs, Gambling and Chocolate A Workbook for Overcoming Addictions (2nd Edition)

A. Thomas Horvath, Ph.D., is president of Practical Recovery Services, San Diego, California, which offers an alternative to 12-step and disease-oriented addiction treatment. He is president of SMART Recovery, a non-profit network of support groups for individuals abstaining from addictive behavior. From 1999-2000 he served as president of the American Psychological Associations Division on Addictions (Division 50). Author A. Thomas Horvath Studio Impact Publishers, Incorporated Format Book

I gambled throughout my twenties ( not realizing I had a gambling addiction) and early thirties with few major problems. I would win a little here and there, but I never had a big payday. Then two years ago I walked into the casino with forty dollars and walked out with one thousand five hundred. The following ten months were the most self-destructive ten months of my life. The bigger problem was in this time how many people I lied, blamed, and would not listen to. In the end I lost a ridiculous amount of money; but what was worse I lost the trust of everyone in my life. Some have started to forgive me, but others never will. I would not blame them. I still don’t trust myself.

After that first big “payday”, I gambled more in the next ten months than I had ever done before. I would estimate I gambled two hundred and seventy out of the three hundred days that this all took place in. The only reason I took those other thirty days off was I was flat broke – classic gambling addiction.. During this stretch of time, I won much money. The problem was, among many problems, I am never content with what I was lucky enough to win. If I won five hundred, I would lose it trying to win a thousand. I had Friday nights where I would win eight thousand dollars. By Sunday , when I would leave, it was all gone. It didn’t matter how much I would be ahead, in the end, the casinos and I both knew I was walking away down. The last few months I was so bad I would not even get the rush, or high, from winning. I knew I was going to lose it eventually. It stopped becoming fun and a game, it became my life.

I wish I could say the money lose was the worse part of my gambling addiction. But everything else that came with it was far worse. See during this time I borrowed money from friends, relatives, and others promising them I would not use it for gambling. I had no plans of it when I borrowed the money, but in the end, I lost it all. For the past eight months I have been trying to rebuild trust with these people. Some have started to forgive me and take what I say as truth. Others have not and I believe never will. Do I expect them to though? No. I just hope to re

Gambling Problem

When Do You Know When Your Gambling Problem Has You Beat?

How do you know when your gambling problem has got you beat? How can you tell when you know your life is getting progressively worse but you just cannot pinpoint exactly why?

My answer to this question is that you will most definitely know. You will know when it is time to get help for your gambling addiction. You will feel it.. and know it in your gut.

You will know that it is time to surrender with your white flag and get yourself help for your gambling problem which has caused so much pain and suffering in your life.

When you start to feel hopeless, despondent, alone, scared, and desperate, you will come to realize that you cannot live your life this way anymore. You cannot continue to come home at 5:00 in the morning broke, guilty, suicidal, and empty inside.

o When you start to lie, cheat, steal, miss work, and max out your credit cards, your gambling problem has gotten the better of you.

o When you stop caring for your body and your hygiene like you used to, your gambling problem has gotten the better of you.

o When family and friends are put on the back burner, and the most important thing in your day is going to the casino, racetrack or poker room, you will know that your gambling problem has gotten the better of you.

Depression, anxiety and loneliness are now familiar emotions to you. When your gambling addiction has gotten the better of you, will you know who you are anymore? You actually will not.

You will feel quite disconnected from your rational thoughts, emotions, and your spirituality. You will feel dead inside, and you will know in your heart that your life is not the same anymore. Things have changed and taken a dramatic turn for the worst.

You will not know who you are anymore when your gambling problem has gotten the better of you.

The best part is that you can get help for your gambling problem. You do not have to live life in this miserable state anymore. You do not have to continue on this self-destructive path any longer.

Addictive Gambling

Real Tips to Avoid Addictive Gambling

There are many types of addictions but one of the most destructive is gambling. Gambling addicts have resorted to thieving, lying and incurred massive financial and physical debts in order to feed their addiction. Most shocking of all, gambling is legal in most parts of the world.

Many people say that it’s quite easy to become addicted to gambling, especially with the ease and anonymity that online Internet gaming sites now offer. These days, you don’t even need to trek to the local bookies to make your bet. You can do it all from the comfort of your home and at a time to suite you, 24hours a day.

Current smartphones make it even easier to place and make bets because you don’t even need to be in front of a computer.

To be fair, gambling is widespread. Many people gamble and have placed small bets on the Superbowl, the World Cup Finals, the World Series, the Grand National or the FA Cup. Indeed, lots of people all over the world play the lottery. This is the acceptable face of gambling. But there is a dark and destructive aspect to gambling that forms into a powerful addiction that can be completely devastating.

So if gambling is legal and so widespread, why isn’t everyone addicted? Because most people know when to quit and go home! Gambling doesn’t have to be addictive. You need strong self-control and an instinct to know when to stop. You need to have much more important things to do and think about in your life.

Nature abhors a vacuum. Gambling fills a need in the addicts life. It’s a substitute for something that’s missing in their daily existence. Compulsive gamblers have lost all rationality along the way and are convinced that ‘luck’ is with them. Logic and sanity have been thrown out of the window.

You should know that gambling is an EXACT science! In the the end, the gambling addict always loses. It was designed that way. The ‘house’ eventually always wins to make profits for its owners and shareholders.

Even if you gamble for fun and not for money, it may not be as harmless as you want to think! You must be on your guard at all times or it could be just a matter of time before you fall into an addiction. A single large win could be the one powerful trigger that pushes you over. You’ll start to believe that you’re ‘lucky’ or a ‘smart gambler’. This is the wrong mindset and will lead to trouble.

If you get the urge to gamble, ask a close friend or a family member to play in a low-risk game that does not involve money. The bet could be take out the garbage or do the weekly shopping or walk the dog.

Online gambling sites will try to lure you into becoming a member by offering you ‘free’ gambling or ‘just for fun’ demonstrations where you bet with ‘play money’ rather than real cash. DON’T be seduced into this madness! If you have strong impulses to gamble, this ‘play mode’ could eventually develop into a real addiction that involves real money.

If you fear that you have an addiction you must seek out professional help in combating it. Search out share groups in your community who are there to help you with your addiction. Gambling is an addiction that is curable and many former gamblers have gone on to lead normal and fulfilling lives.

As with everything in life, it comes down to choice. You are where you are in life because of the choices that you made along the way. Each choice that you made led you along a certain path that has resulted in the position you find yourself in today.

No one can force you to gamble. Gambling is your choice. You don’t have to gamble to have a good time. You can choose NOT to gamble. Remember, prevention is better than cure.