Hey Scott,Scott1 wrote: ↑Fri Jan 22, 2016 6:44 pmJust dropping in with the quick version - I'm almost two years pokie-free now after they almost ruined me. I received invaluable help from a local organisation (NSW Far North Coast) which helped retrain my brain - it helped me to think differently about pokie machines and gambling in general. I still gamble on occasion, but aside from two large-ish relapses involving roulette and sports betting, I've been very well behaved these past two years. These days, if and when I gamble, I feel like a true recreational gambler as opposed to a compulsive/degenerate one - I'm now throwing $10 on Keno once every few weeks, instead of punting away my paycheck every week on the machines. The biggest difference I notice now is my mentality - I don't give a **** if my $10 yields nothing, nor do I have any compulsion to persevere with my numbers and chase the $10 I've lost - half the time I don't even care enough to check my ticket before leaving! My biggest issue in the past was being unable to quit - even when I was winning. Doesn't matter how strong your addiction is - nobody is born a problem gambler - you learned that behavior, and it can be unlearned too.
I'm not a high earner, but I managed to repay almost $20k worth of gambling related debt within 15 months, finishing last September. Days one and two of my 100 day challenge I physically broke down into tears upon reflection of what I'd been doing to myself, and the anxiety of facing that mountain of debt was crippling. I started with $25 a week until I'd rebuilt a small savings fund for life expenses, and from there I started repaying larger amounts as I could afford it. I'm proof that it doesn't matter how deep the hole gets - the first step doesn't have to be a big one, just as long as you take it.
Thanks for posting. Great story of recovery there. And that's the thing some people can live life as a recreational gambler after being a compulsive (degenerate) as you say gambler I laugh because you hit the nail on the head, that's how it feels.
I don't think I could ever be a recreational gambler apart from a lotto $5 lotto ticket which I don't even class as recreation gambling tbh.
Also agree we are not born gamblers and we learn the behaviour (that being said I think some people have a greater chance of developing addictions due to genetics, I 100% believe some addiction personality traits are in the Gene's.)
But yes its unlearning it.
And that's was so scary about today, the smartphones and kids, we are allowing them (yes I am guilty, but trying to reign it back due to this) and video games are triggering something in the brain, and kids are becoming completely addicted to these devices.
Well done to you for going so well. Great example of slow and steady will get you there, how you paid off your debt and started saving just $25 a week to start , at the begining it would seem and people would think that's going to take forever to get any savings, it may start slow but the growth will soon follow.
My hole like yours was pretty deep over a year ago and I saw no way out, but like you say slow and steady gets you there.
Thank you for your post as I say to others these posts of success make me realize there is a great life after a degenerate gambling addiction, something that sometimes is very hard to imagine when quitting or starting again after lapsing.
Keep it up, all the best.