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Hold me accountable - 100 day challenge

Posted: Sun Jun 07, 2020 10:26 am
by Chad20
I know more than anything, if I have a challenge or set myself a goal, by writing it down, involving others, then I am more likely to achieve it. Whilst I’ve had the white noise in my head constantly about “this is it, I’m not gambling anymore” I’ve never been held accountable for it.

I started gambling probably 12 years ago, but for the past 10 years it’s been out of control. I literally will pay my bills and blow every single other cent on gambling. I’m not in debt which is good I guess, other than having a mortgage, I don’t have credit cards or personal loans so I guess I’m lucky.

However, that’s what concerns me, I know with gambling things escalate so I don’t want to start getting credit cards or loans or defaulting on my mortgage. That scares me. That actually scares me not because I am worried about debt but that my family, friends and partner will know about my gambling.

Somehow, after all these years I have hidden it. The people closest to me think I have a bet every now and then but they think I’m not really a big gambler. That’s because of the front I put up and talking about “people having no control of gambler” or “when I bet, I might put $50 in, if I lose it, I lose it” That’s what I portray myself to be. Reality is I can be doing bets anywhere from $50 to $200 on a single horse or dog or trot.

Then comes the next part, when I’m spiraling and frantically chasing, I do big bets on one of the favourites if that doesn’t work I start doing $50 bets on a roughie to try and claw my way back. All which eventually lead to my bank balance being zero. I’m self excluded from all sites but where there is a will there’s a way and I always find a way to get on the punt. Even still, sometimes if I can’t find a way online, I just go down the TAB or go to a pokies venue.

I know I can’t be trusted with my own money. So as soon as I am paid, I pay my bills, buy groceries and supplies for 2 weeks so “incase” I am tempted to gamble and lose it all, I’m covered for the 2 weeks. I literally lose it and am tempted every pay though. It’s like it’s engrained in me “bet big, to win big” which I just know is stupid, all betting leads to is being broke and lonely and feeling desperate- but I can’t stop.

The thing is, I’m well educated, I have a good job, i get paid well. I work with vulnerable people in the community and here I am, completely controlled and taken over by gambling no matter how stupid and idiotic I know it is, I still do it. I still lose all my money. I still feel stressed out til my next pay. I still feel worthless and like a failure, I fail at gambling, I fail at having self control. I fail in the fact if I had an offer to go out with friends, I always choose to stay home and gamble on my own in peace and quiet.

I had to go away for work recently, I enjoyed it cos I was on my own, I could gamble and have the volume up on my phone and listen to the race, rather than just watching it and pretending I was doing something else on my phone and quickly flick between apps if someone could see my phone as they walked past.

Last night I chatted to online chat and got some pointers about what the feeling is that gambling gives me. I’m going to try and put strategies in to divert my attention away from gambling and the buzz it gives me. Today is day 2 of the 100 day challenge, quite easy as pay day isn’t til day 11 of the challenge. That’ll be me first challenge. I hope to be held accountable to my goal, by myself and by others. I am too ashamed and embarrassed to tell anyone in my life, the good thing is I can be quite independent so I’m hoping with this page and with the 100 day challenge I can break this once and for all with going cold turkey.

Hope to be at day 100, being honest with myself and with you guys, that I have achieved it and didn’t get on the punt, I’m so over gambling and want it gone out of my life once and for all!

Re: Hold me accountable - 100 day challenge

Posted: Thu Jun 11, 2020 11:05 am
by Calvin (facilitator)
Hi @Chad20
Thanks for sharing your experiences.
I understand for many people that 'bet big to win big' notion can feel quite intoxicating and addictive.
Like any habit, it can be hard to break but its also about changing the mindset. Challenge yourself when you feel you are having those thoughts of winning or chasing losses. Reach out to our helpline or webchat so you can chat about it when you feel tempted to gamble.
Gambling is a very deceiving thing, so its about retraining your mind around the reality of it all.

So glad to hear you have chosen to participate in the 100 day challenge, thats a big step towards making changes.
I want to remind you to celebrate every little achievement. 100 days seems like a lot but if you set some short realistic goals for the next couple of days at a time, you'd find it can be more fulfilling and less daunting.

Re: Hold me accountable - 100 day challenge

Posted: Sat Jun 13, 2020 1:12 pm
by Chad20
@Calvin (facilitator)

Thank you. Today marks 1 week so Im pretty happy. Was tempted on Thursday, I think cos footy returned but I diverted my attention and focus. What was even more pleasing was not only did I not bet, that night when a friend wanted us to both chuck money on the AFL like we used to, I resisted and half told truth half not, that I was taking a break and had deleted the apps cos I lost the other week. Didn’t say how much, just said a break but I still said no even though I was tempted.

Thank you for your advice Calvin, I’ll make sure I reach out next time plus divert my attention and focus still.

I’m 7 days in to my 100, it’s scientifically proven it takes 21 days to break a habit and 42 to become routine where your brain thinks differently. I know addiction obviously works different but I’m looking forward to my brain rewiring at 42 days.

Re: Hold me accountable - 100 day challenge

Posted: Fri Jun 19, 2020 10:50 am
by Calvin (facilitator)
Well done @Chad20 !
Temptation can be pretty tough, especially when we are used to gambling with friends or discussing gambling with friends.
Really glad to hear that you were able to divert that impulse to gamble!
Keep up the great work ! :D