Curious about your gambling?
- During the past 12 months, have you become restless, irritable or anxious when trying to stop/cut down on gambling?
- During the past 12 months, have you tried to keep your family or friends from knowing how much you gambled?
- During the past 12 months, did you have such financial trouble as a result of your gambling that you had to get help with living expenses from family, friends or welfare?
If you answered YES to any of the questions, there are five common stages to change your gambling.
Five stages that most people who change their gambling go through
- You are not interested in changing. You do not want to think or talk about it. You do not see gambling as a problem. Others may have told you that your gambling is a problem for them.
- You might begin to see your gambling has a downside, but you are not ready to give it up. You may be more willing to talk about it. You are unsure about changing but you are mulling it over.
- You may set clear goals to change with your counselor, such as setting time and money limits on when and how much you will gamble. You might be thinking about making bigger changes. You might consider taking a short break from gambling to get some perspective.
- You take action. You reduce or stop gambling. Your gambling is a problem that needs your attention. This stage may take more of your time and energy. You may slip up and gamble again. Many people slip up, learning as they go.
- You have decided to stop gambling for six or more months, and you work hard to maintain this decision. Gambling slips occur, and while upsetting to your and your family, you understand that a slip up helps you understand your gambling better. Slip ups strengthen your resolve to change your gambling.
You and your counselor develop a plan that includes:
- Safe and comfortable withdrawal from the gambling you want to change
- Motivation to remember the reason you want to change your gambling
- Skills to maintain the change you want
- Additional help or services that help you reach your goal