How to stop online gambling addiction

Gambling is enough not only to ruin a life but to ruin the whole family and the online gambling has just made the menace more accessible for people. Addiction to online gambling can ruin your finances as there is no higher limit on how much you can lose on it, which is sure to affect your personal life as well as your mental health and relationships. People addicted to gambling hardly ever enjoy a good relationship with family, friends or colleagues and they are most expected to become completely engrossed with gambling, neglecting every other aspect of life.

It is best to not to fall prey to gambling, and more so to online gambling because online gambling is even more likely to become an addiction as it gives you all the convenience of continuing gambling. However, if you have already started gambling, it is best that you try your best to come out of it at the earliest. Stopping online gambling addiction is not simple, but if you are actually serious about getting out of it, it is not impossible either. This article will inform you about how you can stop the addiction of online gambling and can get back to your life.

The first step to stop online gambling is to understand that you are becoming addicted to it and how it is ruining your life and your financial planning. Once you are able to understand that you are becoming addicted to it, and you are ruining your life through online gambling, you will feel the urge from within you to back off. If you note any of the following symptoms in you, know for sure that you have become a gambling addict and it is high time that you quit the habit.

Symptoms of online gambling addiction

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  • You feel enthusiastic and happy only when you are gambling.
  • Nothing in life seems to be more rewarding than placing bait on online gambling and winning it.
  • If you continue gambling even when you cannot afford to lose the money, you are surely addicted o it.
  • Mood disorders are very common amongst gamblers. It can even take a turn for the worst making you abusive towards the people close to you.
  • If you spend a considerable time daily on online gambling, you surely have become addicted to it.
  • If you are neglecting your family and other responsibilities due to gambling, it is a clear sign of becoming addicted to the habit.

If you notice these signs, there is no doubt that you have become addicted to online gambling and you need to quit the habit at the earliest.

List out the cons of online gambling and the pros of quitting it

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The first step to quit online gambling should be to list out the cons of it. Addiction of online gambling is sure to have affected you and your life in many ways. It might have ruined your financial situations as well as your relationships. The habit of gambling often triggers the use of alcohol and smoke, which are sure to take a serious toll on your health too. Quitting online gambling can be helpful to get back to a normal life and to mend the relationships that are actually important for you. List all the pros of quitting online gambling in a personal diary as well as the menacing effects of online in your life, so that you can refer to it whenever you feel the urge to gamble.

Make a plan to quit the habit

You need to quit gambling completely because people who have got addicted to it can hardly ever make it to control the urge of going overboard once they have started playing the game. So, it is best to restrain yourself fully from the habit instead of trying to control the amount or time you spend on online gambling.  Your plan should include a quit date at the earliest and also a plan to engage your time and to get rid of the habit. Including the next things in your plan can be actually helpful to stick to your pledge and to reach the goal.

Announce your pledge

Once you have taken the decision of stopping online gambling, inform your family and friends about it. It will enable the people close to you to become available for you to provide all the support you might need in this transition phase. Know for sure that the people, who are actually close to you, will be more than happy to know that you have taken such a right decision and they will even be ready to cover the extra mile to provide you with any assistance you might need during this stage. Announcing your decision will make it much easier for you to stick to it. So, let others know.

Take short breaks

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For online gambling addicts it can be really difficult to quit the habit all together, so they can start with taking small breaks. If you spend most of the time of the day gambling, then start taking hour wise breaks or start skipping a few days every week. Ensure that you do not get to gambling on the days that you have decided as gambling-free days and slowly increase the number of clean days in a week.

Keep in mind the feeling of losing

When you are keeping yourself away from gambling, at the beginning, it is expected that the urge to get back to it will be strong. Remembering how bad it feels to lose in gambling can be an effective way to ward off the urge. Losing in gambling is surely the worst part of it, and for gambling addicts, it is a part of daily life. Hence, staying away from it, lets you stay away from experiencing the loss as well, which can help you to control the urge.

Find a replacement activity that you enjoy

If you are sitting free at home without doing anything productive, it is more likely that you will feel like getting back to online gambling. So, engage your free time in something productive. Take up an active sport that will occupy your mind and will not let you think about gambling. Learning something new and interesting like a dance class or a music lesson during your free time, which you might have otherwise spent on gambling, can also be a good idea. Hanging out with friends or family can also be an effective way to get back to a normal life and also to heal the relationships that might have taken a burnt.

Go out on a holiday to a remote place

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One of the effective ways of stopping online gambling can be to go out on a holiday to a place where there is no internet connectivity and hence you cannot take part in online gambling. A change in your regular dwelling place and being close to the nature is sure to give you a new feeling of happiness and wellbeing even without gambling and as you will not be able to gamble, automatically you will start to live without it. It might be a bit difficult to cope with the no gambling environment at first, but within a few days you are sure to feel better and happy even without gambling.

Let someone else control your finances

Online gambling is directly related with your finances. So, when you are trying to come out of the addiction letting someone else close to you control your finances can be an effective way. As you will have no easy money to spend on gambling automatically you will have to restrict the playing.

Practice meditation

Practicing meditation might be effective to control online gambling addiction. Meditation can be helpful to calm your mind and to have better control on your wishes, which can be effective to control the habit of online gambling. Meditation will also help you to relax your senses and to have a balanced life, which is essential for overall well being.

Join a support group

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Joining a support group can be highly helpful to quit the habit of online gambling. A support group will give you all the information as well as mental strength that you will need to quit the addiction. Communicating with other people who have been addicted to the same habit and are now trying to come out of it as well as to the ones who have successfully come out of this addiction can be actually helpful to quit the habit.

Get help from a counselor

Counseling can be highly effective to stop online gambling addiction. If you are finding it really difficult to quit the habit even after following the above measures, taking assistance from an addiction counselor can be the best thing you can do for yourself.

Professional treatment for gambling addiction

You can always opt for professional treatments to cure your addiction for online gambling. There are different inpatient treatment programs, cognitive behavioral therapy, four step program and others to help people overcome their addiction for gambling. Getting professional treatment does not mean that you are weak; it only means that you are fully aware about the harmful effects of online gambling, and you just want to get rid of the habit seriously for the good of your own and your family.  So, if you are addicted to online gambling, take the right decision today and ensure that this menace is not able to ruin your life and your family.