March Blog




Dealing with Triggers Related to Gambling

When it comes to gambling, the transition from the initial urge to the action can seem almost effortless. Over time, the routine of gambling can become second nature, making the decision-making process automatic. What was once a recreational pastime can start to feel like a necessity. Not engaging in gambling can create a sense of unease, making it feel essential to place a bet to regain a sense of normality. This experience is common for many individuals during their waking hours. An identity shift occurs, linking you closely with gambling. We aim to help you reclaim your identity at the Primary Care Gambling Service. Our blog focuses on promoting healthier choices and establishing a robust support system, whilst avoiding places and situations which may trigger the desire to gamble.

Tips on how to manage your gambling triggers

1. Have a clear mind

Having a clear mind is vital when trying to avoid the temptation to gamble, as alcohol or other substances can alter your thinking process. It’s easier to make choices that negatively impact our lives whilst being under the influence as they can lower your inhibitions and increase risk taking behaviours.

2. Discussing the issue

Having a conversation about gambling with a trusted individual who won't judge you can help relieve the burden of keeping it to yourself. This can also alleviate the stress that may lead to further gambling. Putting feelings into words helps you use self-control when you feel vulnerable or upset.

3. Keeping a Journal

To identify your triggers, begin by recording them in a journal. Note the type of gambling, time spent, and the money lost. Then, jot down your thoughts and feelings. Keeping a journal allows you to get in touch with your emotional and personal needs. It can be a way of consistently tracking your progress and patterns; therefore, you can become more self-aware. It is beneficial for avoiding triggers because seeing these patterns allows you to hold yourself more accountable and keep your recovery in check.

4. Change to new ways of thinking

Distract yourself by engaging in an activity that breaks your usual routine, like hitting the gym, watching a movie, or practicing relaxation exercises. The goal is to steer clear of places that might trigger you, use this chance to discover new experiences and opportunities within your area. By avoiding triggers and trying new experiences, you can keep your mind engaged and active.

Falling into the temptations of your triggers can be a discouraging and an isolating experience to go through. At the Primary Care Gambling Service, we can work together through therapy to devise a plan to help overcome and avoid situations that trigger you. Creating a long-term strategy that will help you grow past the current situation you are in. If you or someone you know is experiencing the impact of this issue, we are here to help. You can find more information on our website.

Published: Mar 1, 2024