17 February 2020
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How Do We Become Addicted To Gambling?

Like most people, you probably started gambling to have fun, as a recreational activity. And like most people, you remained rational, until, the infamous «beginner’s luck» occurred. Boosted by a sense of being skilled and, of course, «lucky», your emotions got the better of you. You gambled until the very end in order to win more money, but ended up losing even your initial bet. It is all part of the risk. Then driven by the motivation to win again, you gambled over and over and over. Maybe that is how you became addicted.  You are now, without a doubt, part of the group of people who gamble with the goal of recouping their losses and winning more money. When that happens, you see it as an opportunity to win a few little bets back while defying destiny. Hope, fun and excitement are at their peak. However, when it comes to gambling, these feelings are illusionary, since the probabilities of winning are statistically a lot lower than losing.

As with other addictions or addictive behaviours, the way you used to function on a daily basis has now been altered. This can have consequences on the physical, psychological, family, professional and social aspects of your life as a whole. Are you slowly losing control over your gambling behaviours?  Are you aware of the harmful consequences caused by it? Does the irrepressible need to gamble make you suffer and not think straight? Do your days revolve around gambling wanting to compensate for your losses by betting more? You may be caught up in a vicious cycle.

Before getting to that point, though, several factors interacted to ensure that the addiction slowly developed and took hold. Do any of the following factors represent your views on gambling?

Factors Contributing to the
Development of a Gambling Addiction

Maintaining the illusion of being able to control chance

Chance is an aspect that humans have no power over. With chance, intelligence and skill do not count. Yet, when faced with a game of chance, you call on your intelligence as you would in a game of skill. However, it is all in vain. Chance does not discriminate: it leaves us all powerless whether we are intelligent or not.

Motivated by the lure of winning

The emotions we feel while gambling are highly enticing. Everybody loves winning. It has actually been proven that a win remains in our memory longer than a loss.  The first time we gamble, we might win, even win big. This first phase is called the winning phase, better known as «beginner’s luck». Do you agree? Do you believe that gambling is a solution to make easy money?

Having « gambling fever »

Like the vast majority of excessive gamblers, you have experienced the winning phase during your first times gambling. Does this phase, wrongly construed as proof that you are « lucky » or that you know how to gamble well, encourage you to continue gambling? Does winning produce a state of euphoria that you really want to feel again?

Believing your luck will turn

Do you give in more and more to this activity, which is entirely based on chance and not at all skill? It is statistically proven that the amounts always end up being negative. By maintaining the hope that your luck will turn around, you are unable to stop. Despite the negatives effects, you view gambling as the only way to achieve a sense of well-being. Excessive gambling is a problem, but you see it as a solution.

There is a risk that your addiction to gambling will lead you down a path of despair that can have serious consequences on all spheres of your life. You run the risk of isolating yourself from your family, your loved ones and your work place. It is during these difficult moments that you fully assess the consequences of gambling on your life and think about getting out of this vicious circle. If you are becoming aware of needing support to put an end to your gambling addiction :

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