How to Stop Gambling

11 min read
Author
Sol Fayerman-Hansen
Sol Fayerman-Hansen
Editor-in-Chief
Fact checked by:
Paruyr Shahbazyan
Founder
Last Updated: May 27, 2024, 3:04 PM

No Time Better Than The Present!

Gambling addiction is a complex and challenging issue that affects millions worldwide. This comprehensive guide aims to provide insightful and practical solutions for those seeking to overcome the grip of gambling addiction. We will explore strategies ranging from recognizing and acknowledging the problem, implementing practical measures to limit gambling, seeking emotional and psychological support, to addressing underlying issues. Whether you are struggling with gambling yourself or supporting someone who is, this guide offers a path towards recovery, emphasizing the importance of patience, understanding, and a holistic approach to healing.

Recognizing and Acknowledging the Problem

Understanding Gambling Addiction

Gambling addiction, like any other addiction, is characterized by an uncontrollable urge to continue gambling despite the negative consequences it might bring. Recognizing this as a serious issue is the first step to recovery.

Self-Assessment

Reflect on your gambling behavior. Ask yourself critical questions such as: Are you gambling more than you can afford? Do you need to gamble with larger amounts for the same thrill? Have you tried and failed to stop gambling before? Honest answers to these questions can help you understand the severity of the issue​​​​.

Implementing Practical Strategies to Stop Gambling

Self-Exclusion and Gambling Blockers

Use self-exclusion tools to prevent access to gambling sites and establishments. These tools are essential in physically limiting opportunities to gamble​​.

Dealing with Boredom

Gambling often fills a void of boredom or lack of engagement. Finding alternative activities and hobbies is crucial in breaking the gambling routine​​​​.

Mindfulness and Meditation 

Techniques like Body Scan and Mindful Breathing can help focus your mind and reduce the urge to gamble. They are effective in managing stress and anxiety, common triggers for gambling​​.

Emotional and Psychological Support

Building a Support Network

Share your struggles with trusted friends or family. Their understanding and support can be crucial in your recovery journey. Additionally, expanding your social network to include people who are not associated with gambling can provide a healthier environment​​.

Joining Support Groups and Forums

Engaging with support groups such as Gamblers Anonymous and online forums provides community support and valuable shared experiences. These platforms offer emotional support and practical advice from people who have faced similar challenges​​​​.

Addressing Underlying Issues

Seeking Professional Help

Professional counselors or therapists specializing in addiction can offer tailored advice and treatment plans. They can help address underlying issues such as stress, depression, or other mental health problems that may contribute to the gambling addiction​​​​.

Relaxation Techniques

Activities like yoga, exercise, and meditation are effective ways to manage stress and anxiety. They also promote overall well-being, reducing the need to gamble as an escape​​​​. 

Cognitive and Behavioral Changes

Visualizing Consequences

Imagining the negative outcomes of continued gambling can act as a deterrent. Create mental associations of gambling with its adverse effects on your life​​.

Gratitude Practices

Maintaining a daily gratitude journal can shift focus to the positive aspects of life without gambling. Recognizing what you are thankful for each day reduces the perceived need for the excitement gambling provides​​.

Recognizing Triggers 

Identify situations or emotions that trigger the urge to gamble. This self-awareness is crucial for avoiding or coping with these triggers in healthier ways.

Lifestyle Changes

Finding New Hobbies and Interests

Engaging in new hobbies or revisiting old ones can provide a sense of fulfillment and purpose, filling the void left by gambling. Whether it's sports, arts, reading, or gardening, these activities can be both enjoyable and distracting from gambling urges​​​​.

Healthy Living

Adopting a healthier lifestyle through balanced diet, regular exercise, and sufficient sleep can improve your overall mental and physical well-being, making it easier to resist gambling temptations.

Relapse Prevention

Preparing for Lapses

Understand that recovery is a journey and there may be setbacks. Prepare for possible lapses and plan how to deal with them without returning to old habits.

Continuous Self-Monitoring

Regularly assess your progress and be honest with yourself about your gambling behaviors. Adjust your strategies as needed to ensure ongoing recovery.

Conclusion

Overcoming gambling addiction is a process involving acknowledgment, practical strategies, emotional support, and lifestyle changes. It's a journey of self-discovery and growth, requiring patience, commitment, and perseverance. Remember, it's okay to seek help, and taking steps towards recovery is a sign of strength. With the right support and strategies, it is possible to overcome gambling addiction and lead a fulfilling life.

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Responsible Gambling

Meet Our Authors

Paruyr Shahbazyan began his business career in 2000 as a private entrepreneur. Over thirteen years, he developed a deep understanding for business and leadership, laying a solid foundation for his professional journey.

In 2013, Paruyr stepped into the sports and betting industry as the founder and president of Bookmaker Rating. This online mass media platform, which he led until 2020, focused on providing in-depth analysis and insights in sports betting, earning a reputation for its quality content. 

Continuing his innovative approach in 2022, Paruyr co-founded Azuro, a decentralized betting protocol. This venture showcases his dedication to integrating advanced technology in the evolving landscape of sports betting. Through these diverse experiences, Paruyr has continuously influenced and shaped the betting industry, driving new trends and setting high standards.

 ExperienceYear
Engaged in private entrepreneurship2000-2013
Founder and President at Bookmaker Rating, an online platform focused on sports and betting2013-2020
Co-founder at Azuro, a decentralized betting protocol2022

"Innovation in sportsbetting comes from a deep understanding of both technology and the human element of sports." 

- Paruyr Shahbazyan, Founder, RG

 

Principles and Ethics

Paruyr Shahbazyan's core beliefs lie in the power of informed decision-making and integrity in the betting industry. He understands that the foundation of successful betting is not just about odds and predictions, but also about the trust and reliability of the information provided. Paruyr advocates for a betting environment where transparency and knowledge are paramount, ensuring that bettors are well-equipped with accurate data and insights.

Strategic Vision

Paruyr's vision is to revolutionize the sports betting industry through the integration of technology. He sees the future of betting as a blend of traditional sports knowledge with innovative tech solutions, like decentralized protocols, to enhance user experience and fairness. His aim is to create platforms that are not only user-friendly but also uphold the highest standards of ethical betting, contributing to a more responsible and enjoyable betting culture.

Future Perspectives

Looking towards the future, Paruyr envisions a betting landscape that is more inclusive, technologically advanced, and globally connected. He anticipates a significant shift towards more decentralized and transparent betting systems, driven by blockchain technology. Paruyr is committed to being at the forefront of this change, continuously exploring new possibilities and innovations that can redefine what it means to engage in sports betting in a digital world. His focus is on building systems that prioritize user empowerment, fairness, and the global growth of the sports betting community.

 

Sol Fayerman-Hansen
Sol Fayerman-Hansen
Editor-in-Chief

Sol's interest in sports was sparked at a young age, inspired by athletes such as Barry Sanders, Michael Jordan, and Wayne Gretzky. This early fascination evolved into a deep-seated passion, guiding him toward a career in sports journalism in 2007. Over the years, Sol has contributed thousands of articles and reviews to dozens of online platforms, sharing his research, knowledge, and perspectives.

“In the world of sports betting, truth is more valuable than any bonus offer.”

ExperienceYear
Content Manager, OnlineCasinoReports2012-2021
Sports Journalist, Dottraffic2009-2011
Content Writer, HouseTech2007-2009
Cristina Varela Galan
Cristina Varela Galan
Problem Gambling Expert

Cristina used to work as a Psychology Assistant in the Bizkaia Pathological and Risky Gamblers Association. She was also part of a research team in Deusto University, specializing in pathological gambling area. While working there, she managed to develop her own project 

 “Exploring the association between emotional regulation, alexithymia, stressful life events and gambling in adolescent and young adult women”.

Nick Ashbourne
Nick Ashbourne
Senior Writer

Nick has been fascinated with sports since he was first taken to a Toronto Maple Leafs game back in 1998, and he's written about them professionally since 2014.

Nick has covered baseball and hockey for outlets like The Athletic, Sportsnet, and Yahoo Sports, and his sports betting expertise has grown since its legalization in Ontario in 2022. 

Between 2022 and 2023 he worked for a betting startup called NorthStar Bets, and in 2024 he contributed to Oddspedia before joining the Responsible Gambling team.

Anna Kravtcova
Anna Kravtcova
Problem Gambling Expert

Ph.D. in organizational psychology, an internationally certified psychologist (EuroPsy 2022, Cognitive behavioural therapy of mindfulness 2020, International Society for Emotional Intelligence 2017, Russian Psychological society 2014, American Psychological Association(Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychologist) 2011), speaker of many international conferences (USA, Brazil, Portugal, Czech Republic, Russia, etc.). TEDx speaker.

Mike made the decision to dive headfirst into the booming world of sports betting fresh out of college. Back in the day, when 1-800 pick lines and sports pagers were all the rage, he couldn't resist the allure, having grown up idolizing sports legends like Sweetness, MJ, and Slammin Sammy. Mike dedicated his early years to the industry, tirelessly analyzing games, writing articles with free picks, and selling his expertise on reputable handicapping sites. Unlike many others, Mike was known for his integrity and only released one Game of the Year per sport, per season. His hard work and unwavering commitment paid off, earning him a devoted following and propelling his career to new heights. Then came the explosion of Daily Fantasy Sports. Believe it or not, companies like DraftKings and FanDuel used to pay Mike's company to increase their brand exposure. Now, those same industry giants don't even bother responding to his emails. While Mike appreciates the convenience of being able to place legal bets in his own backyard, he can't help but feel disheartened by what has become of the industry. People are being led astray, falsely believing that a mere $5 wager on a 20-team same-game-parlay will be their ticket to financial security. If there’s one thing Mike learned from making book back in the day, it’s that parlays are a bookie’s best friend. A bankroll is the only leg you have to stand on in the battle with the books, and Mike’s here to offer up advice on how to protect it.

Mark Medina
Mark Medina
NBA Reporter

Mark Medina is a longtime NBA reporter that includes stints as a Lakers blogger with The Los Angeles Times (2010-12), Lakers beat writer with the Los Angeles Daily News (2012-17), Warriors beat writer with Bay Area News Group (2017-19) as well as an NBA reporter/columnist for USA Today (2019-21) and NBA.com (2021-23). Medina is also an NBA insider with Fox Sports Radio and frequent contributor to CBSLA's SportsCentralLA with Jim Hill and with Spectrum Sportsnet.

Daria Tuboltseva
Daria Tuboltseva
Hockey Journalist

Daria went to St. Petersburg State University and earned a bachelor of international journalism. Working as a sports journalist from 2014, from 2016 as a hockey journalist. Covered 5 World Championships, 2022 Winter Olympics, 2020 World Juniors, 6 Gagarin Cup Finals. 

Owner of a telegram channel Coolest Game on Earth.

Integrative nutritionist specializing on sports nutritionology.