Most people who gamble are able to keep it in check and use it as a pastime for a little fun. However, others completely lose it and fail to realize when it’s time to stop. They become addicted to both offline and online gambling to the point of throwing their finances and lives off-balance. When it gets to this, it is definitely time to realize that you have a problem and that it is necessary to reconsider your gambling ways.
Gambling addiction is a real phenomenon that can have extreme consequences if not managed early enough. For most culprits, it is a mental shift that originates from a big win or loss. The person gets hooked and gambles more to either recoup the loss or add to the win. The problem begins when you have to eat into your budget and savings just to suffice your need to gamble. The following factors are instrumental in driving a person deeper into addiction:
Thinking that you can Command Chance
Most addiction patients have this misleading illusion that they can control chance. Unfortunately, this gets them to believe that they can overturn their luck through the power of the mind. This is what will push them to spend extensive hours in the casino trying to master the game; thinking that learning the tricks is all that is required to win. Failure to acknowledge that success in gambling is to a high extent dependent on luck becomes their undoing.
Lured by the Jackpot
Most gamblers have a better memory of their wins compared to their losses. Winning a few hands can make someone want to aim for an even bigger prize. The unfortunate case, especially for first-timers, is that “beginners luck” drives them into taking gambling as more than a hobby. An obsession develops with the hope of winning the ultimate prize; the jackpot.
Even those gamblers who are on their worst streaks still keep the faith that their luck will change in time, with the hope of brighter days ahead. This makes them oblivious to their losses and piling debts, despite the fact there are enough statistics to prove that Lady Luck won’t smile at them anytime soon.
How to tell that you are an Addict
While the symptoms of addiction to gambling are clear, they may be hard to identify if you are not sure of them. The sad part is that you never know you are at this point until you look in hindsight and take account of your life. The following red flags should grab your attention:
• You can’t stop- A wise gamblers knows when to bail. If you have no limit to your gambling and you have no boundaries to what you can gamble with, you are probably an addict.
• Stepping out of the budget- Addicts will typically spend beyond the gambling budget. They will go as far as betting with money meant for important things like food and rent.
• Gambling to recover losses or win- When you get to that point where your sole purpose for gambling is to recover the money you lost or to win the jackpot and there is no fun in it, you are in a bad place.
• Obsessive thinking- When all you drink, eat and sleep is gambling, and you always have it on your mind. You are stuck on gambling-related sites like www.blackjack.org all day long.