Gambling addictions and habits. Brian Dennis MBACP ( Accred.)
Babies are not born with gambling habits. Therefore, it can be assumed that people who consider themselves as problem gamblers have learned the habit of gambling at some time in their lives. As with other learned habits, it can be changed from being a normal habit to being a behaviour which a person does not use.
All people have habits. Habits save a lot of brain power and usually make life easier. Commonly, a person will remember how much sugar, if any, they like with their tea or coffee. They will tie their shoelaces the same way each time, without much thought. Those are habits which save the time of having to re-experiment and re-learn when a common task is performed.
For some people gambling is a habit. It might seem a 'compulsion', however that would need a 'compelling' force. There are few situations when a person will ever be physically 'forced' to gamble. Ultimately, it is their decision to gamble, or not.
Counselling can help bring back the reality that each person has the ability to make rational decisions to behave how they wish. Counselling can assist in empowering a problem gambler to question internal thoughts, and external advertising, that gambling is a source of wealth, a solution to boredom or a benifical source of excitement.
In many locations worldwide gambling has become a problem for many people. I work with clients, via the Skype internet service, to bring a new method of life which does not include gambling. It will be hard work for most clients. It will often save a relationship and enable a new, happy, lifestyle. Changing habits is not easy, it is possible.
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