It is helpful to turn away aggressively from thoughts of gambling as many times as it takes per day to train ourselves that we will do what we should do. To turn away aggressively means to turn away instantly from any emotions, situations, temptations, wrong people or anything else that may trip us up.
What do you do that leads to gambling? Do you hang with the wrong friends? Do you fantasize about the big win? Does drinking or drugs lead you to start again. Today write in your journal things that you do that lead you to gambling.
One reason many people gamble is for fun. Many people like to take a moderate amount of money they can afford to lose and have a fun night at the casino. The question is, once we go over the line of moderation can we increase our pleasure. The answer is you never can increase your pleasure with out of control gambling because even if you win, all you are doing is what I call “selling our pleasure back words”. When you win you get extreme pleasure because you beat the system. However when you lose it all a week later, plus some money you needed to buy necessities, you crash and have extreme pain with the situation you are now in.
What happened is you gambled with money you could not afford to lose and won on Friday. This brought you increased pleasure. But when you lose it all the next Friday you have destruction and pain. A person who does not gamble has less pleasure then you on Friday #1. But then they have much more pleasure than you on Friday #2 because you got wiped out. They also do not get the destruction and pain you get on Friday #2 when you go broke. Please see my article Pleasure + Addiction = Pain for more information on how addiction never brings us more pleasure over the course of the month, year, and usually not even over the course of two weeks.
This week say every morning noon and night: I can not increase my pleasure this month by gambling.
Notice I did not say I can’t increase my fun and excitement today because the Casino is okay with you winning for one day. But you have to fight through your high temptation day or days.
Then you need to change your focus to trying to have joy over the course of the whole month. Please see my article Finding Joy. You will never have maximum joy over the whole month if you ruin everything by going back to your addiction.
God has unfailing love for us. Every day I will add another verse that talks about His unfailing love. Psalm 21:7 For the king trusts in the LORD; through the unfailing love of the Most High he will not be shaken.
For Christians one question is, is there a connection between sin and gambling? Think about that today.
When we are not doing something good we will do something bad.
Gambling is usually accompanied by an unknown attitude of: “I must have short term pleasure at any cost.” To fight this attitude pray: Father: take away my love of pleasure and fill me with a Spirit of toughness. A Spirit of toughness leads to God’s joy because we are saying that we will stop doing the wrong behavior. We will instead be tough and switch to an activity that we only sort of like. But it is an activity which avoids destruction and leads to long term joy and a chance to find our purpose.
Let’s continue to watch people who are trying to quit to see what they are doing. Jan focused on reading books that will help her control her emotions and the things that are out of control in her life.
Get books, articles, advice and add them to your journal. Underline key points of advice and review that advice often until it becomes a habitual part of your life.
Bill is making it a habit to tell himself to turn away aggressively from thoughts of gambling 5 times every day. For busy people we should say it 5 times per day, for others we need to say it every hour. To turn away aggressively means to turn away instantly from any emotions, situations, temptations, wrong people or anything else that may trip us up.
Jim plans to find a Church this week that will help him with his gambling.
Every day Mike worked at analyzing what he was doing that leads him back to gambling. Over time he started to really understand how his mind and emotions played tricks on him. This knowledge gave him more skills on how to fight his addiction.
Don’t Ruin Tomorrow Today
Everyone who has a bad habit ruins tomorrow. The big problem is that for many people tomorrow is now today. Today they are stressed out, strung out, and totally frazzled from what happened yesterday.
This mad cycle will continue until you put in the work to snap out of it. So first remind yourself 3 times every day how you will feel tomorrow if you live a vibrant Christian life today. Next remind yourself (use this one only if reminding yourself is not a trigger) 3 times every day how you will feel tomorrow if you go back to your abomination. Lastly remind yourself 3 times every day for the rest of your life – “I will not ruin tomorrow today.”
Read John 3, 1st Corinthians 3 and Proverbs 1 from the Bible.
Continue to read “The Purpose Driven Life”.
Day one: Quitting addiction exercises
Day two: It is important to admit you are powerless
Day 3: Learn the right way to live
Day 4: Getting rid of negative emotions
Day 5: Remember – money lost is not yours. Don’t try to get it back or you will lose more.