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Abstaining isn't enough
#1
If nothing changes then nothing changes. If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always got. These are just two examples of sayings that a lot of compulsive gamblers should be able to identify with. 
It is quite a simple formula for abstaining from gambling. Attend a meeting regularly, give over your money, don't visit gambling establishments, physical or virtual, be accountable to another person for your time. Do those things and you should stay off gambling.BUT, what happens when you are faced with a situation that might take you back to gambling to escape dealing with it? It could be stress at work, money issues, sometimes just the fact it's raining! Our addiction will find any way to get you back at it.

Long term recovery, not just abstinence, comes from change within. Looking at ourselves, finding our triggers, getting rid of as much fuel for the flame of addiction as possible.
Now this isn't easy as it means admitting we have flaws much deeper than just gambling, but it is worth the work if it helps keep addiction at bay, at the same time helping us become better people.
If you are able to attend a Steps meeting or group I would recommend it. It might be a meeting with a counsellor but in my experience it helps if someone has experienced what you're talking about.


So that's my post. If all you do is attend meetings, what happens when you stop attending? My experience was I relapsed. I hope you're different but if you're like me, give a change program a go.
How do I stop gambling?

Honesty.
Open-minded.
Willingness.


Chris.
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#2
Chris B

Excellent post, really enjoyed reading it.

In Unity
Martin
My name is Martin, I am a compulsive gambler, my last bet was 29.9.2017. God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things that I can, and wisdom to know the difference.
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#3
Thank you. Maybe there's others who have done more than just stopped gambling and they could share what they've done and how it's helped?
How do I stop gambling?

Honesty.
Open-minded.
Willingness.


Chris.
Reply
#4
(20-03-2019, 06:33 PM)Chris_b Wrote: If nothing changes then nothing changes. If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always got. These are just two examples of sayings that a lot of compulsive gamblers should be able to identify with. 
It is quite a simple formula for abstaining from gambling. Attend a meeting regularly, give over your money, don't visit gambling establishments, physical or virtual, be accountable to another person for your time. Do those things and you should stay off gambling.BUT, what happens when you are faced with a situation that might take you back to gambling to escape dealing with it? It could be stress at work, money issues, sometimes just the fact it's raining! Our addiction will find any way to get you back at it.

Long term recovery, not just abstinence, comes from change within. Looking at ourselves, finding our triggers, getting rid of as much fuel for the flame of addiction as possible.
Now this isn't easy as it means admitting we have flaws much deeper than just gambling, but it is worth the work if it helps keep addiction at bay, at the same time helping us become better people.
If you are able to attend a Steps meeting or group I would recommend it. It might be a meeting with a counsellor but in my experience it helps if someone has experienced what you're talking about.


So that's my post. If all you do is attend meetings, what happens when you stop attending? My experience was I relapsed. I hope you're different but if you're like me, give a change program a go.
Hi

The recovery program helps us heal from our pains.
Just for today I will not gamble means we are not willing to hurt our self or others.
Abstaining means that we stop escaping in any way and understand our emotional triggers we can face our feelings and deal with things in a healthier way.
My emotional triggers were pain fear frustrations (these 3 being anger).
My emotional triggers were loneliness and boredom.
My frustrations were due to my unreasonable expectations of people life and situations.
By me being frustrated I was in effect hurting myself and causing myself pain not once but time and time again.
My emotional frustrations were covered by the serenity prayer even though I am a non religious person.

I am not able to change other people in any way, yet I am able to change my unhealthy reactions to people life and situations.
Once I abstained, then I started to move on talking about money and being action I talked about how I dealt with people life and situations today in a healthy way.
I understand that today I am not the same person I was from day one in my recovery hence I no longer feel guilty or ashamed.
When you exchange unhealthy habits you change how you feel with in your self.
Regret shame guilt are replaced with pride.
By humbling myself I become an equal to all people.
I place no importance in when my last bet was, the most important thing today is am I being healthy.
Boredom is replaced with healthy activity and productivity in so many ways.
Just by abstaining was not enough I needed to fill my time with healthy activities.
To write to read to get things done on my lists.
It was important to write down my needs my wants and even start to reach goals one day at time.
Shirley my wife and I exceeded our goals yesterday doing some thing we had never done before.
It was very powerful and exciting.
I use to be such an unhealthy person and I used to waste time and money.
I did not value myself or others.
That has changed I have changed to being healthy today.
Love and peace to every one.

Dave L
AKA Dave of Beckenham
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#5
A good question for us all?

Maybe think about it

Smartie xx
Meetings help, but meetings are only a small part to how GA works....

GA is a 12 step organisation that offers the program that keeps me in recovery...

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#6
Hi

My addictions and my obsessions were a form of escape from people life an situations I could not cope with in a healthy way.

I am able to say today that the addictions and my obsessions were just the symptoms that I was emotionally vulnerable.

The recovery program enabled me to start to abstain from unhealthy habits.

I was for sure emotionally vulnerable yet I had suffered many pains in my past and got in to the unhealthy habits of living in my fears.


My fears were a consequence of any pains that were not healed in my life.

In the recovery program I would open up much more, in time I would move from talking about money and my addictions, I would identify that I had been a victim, that I had also been a perpetrator.

Moving towards giving therapies I would expose more and more of myself, as my fears reduced my trust grew more and more.

With the help of healthy sponsors and my sharing I would open up to emotional intimacy.

With the help of healthy meetings I would move from using offensive language, I would learn to communicate in healthy ways.

The simple fact I could not trust myself with money, money was the fuel for my addiction.

So the abstaining was only the beginning of me stop hurting myself, only when I was abstaining from unhealthy habits could my inner child start to heal.

The more time and energy I put in to my recovery the more I would get from it.

My motives were very unhealthy, my wording I have to implied obsessive thinking, only when I gave of myself unconditionally could I get any benefit from my healthy actions and healthy words.

I need to identify my needs my wants and improve my goals and to write them down on daily basis.

The wording humbling myself I use to think was about making myself feel less than other people.

In time I was humbling myself to being an equal to all people, both in and out of recovery.

I never knew how much more I was going to get out of my life in being more productive and more interactive with every one.

In my recovery I have been more productive and getting more out of my life today.

Love and peace to every one.

Dave L

AKA Dave of Beckenham
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