Gambling in Canada is a fun pastime if you know the right way to do it. You can escape all your boredom and loneliness within seconds and experience the thrill of fun games.
However, responsible gaming is an important part of the deal. It will be your knight in shining armour to protect you from a destructive addiction. It would be best to avoid certain things to be at the top of your game without becoming a gambling addict.
Otherwise, you are at the risk of losing your source of entertainment and turning it into a constant headache. So, it’s time to learn about the proper ways to enjoy the sessions best while resisting the temptations that lead to addiction. Let’s dive deeper into the matter to learn where the line between fun and addiction lies and how not to cross it.
Gambling is Supposed to be Fun
When we talk about gambling, we purely mean entertainment through fun games. It never equates to making quick money or a permanent source of income. You are throwing yourself under the bus if you think it is an investment policy, or that you can recover lost funds through gaming. Win or loss, it all comes down to luck. Use the finances that justify the cost of playing the game and that you can afford to lose, not something you would like to see double up.
There is a high chance for you to lose more money if you rush into trying to recoup a loss. No doubt, gambling is a source of fun that you can have with friends or in solitude. However, don’t go as far as to risk the amount you need for necessities, like rent or food. If this happens, chances are that you are in the realm of addiction.
Watch Out for Warning Signals
One thing you need to monitor is warning signals. If you notice any of these, alert yourself that you’re on the pathway to becoming an addict: 1. You might borrow sums just to gamble with because you couldn’t stick to your budget. This is a major red flag; 2. You may feel a constant urge to gamble, and it can occupy your thoughts while you’re engaging in other essential activities like work.
All your focus will be on getting back to gambling as soon as possible; 3. People often feel irritated when they cannot cover up losses, and it takes its toll on their peace of mind. It becomes so preoccupying that you have to lie to your friends and family about your gambling; 4. Playing casino games seems like a constant obligation, while quitting seems like an impossible and tiresome decision. Even when you already have too much on your plate.
Avoid Gambling Step by Step
If you’re wondering how to avoid this situation, there are some things Canadian players can do to ensure they reduce their gambling considerably. If you stick to these steps firmly, you may be able to keep your desire to gamble at bay.
Get ready to turn unbridled instincts into healthy gambling habits that you can use to keep the entertainment going. Certainly, you will have fun gambling and have time for your daily routine too. There is no sure guarantee that these tips will work for you, but they can reduce the overall risk of becoming excessively addicted to gambling.
Step 1: Only Play When You Feel It’s Fun
The first thing to do is learn the difference between fun and addiction. When you feel happy and engaged in the games, it is fun. You have your friends with you, wins and losses don’t matter, and you feel fresh.
However, the second you find yourself worrying over recouping losses, there is no fun in the games, or you feel like it’s just a part of your routine – that’s when it’s time to step back! Take a break for a few days, not hours, and relax. You could also start participating in other activities like sports or reading.
Step 2: Make Sure You View Gambling as Entertainment
The moment you start viewing gambling as a source of income, or as a way to invest, your ship is going to sink. The day you start gambling beyond your budget, you will be in trouble, because all you’ll think about is making money through it; the entertainment factor becomes secondary.
So make sure you always force yourself to view casino games as a source of entertainment and something that you need to pay for so that you don’t run around trying to make up for the loss. It is like a Netflix subscription, costing $10 a month.
Step 3: Set Up a Budget
Neglecting to have a proper budget can drain your funds. Just like other activities and entertainment sources, set aside an amount every month for gambling. Use it to gamble whenever you want, and once the budget runs out, don’t turn to other sources of money.
No borrowing, no loans, and certainly don’t use money kept aside for essentials. That way, you can surely stay away from any stressful debts. The more aware you are of your financial status, the lower the risk of losing funds on impulsive gambling will be! Your financial awareness will always help you make reasonable decisions.
Step 4: Transfer Your Gambling Money to Different Accounts
You might feel this is an unreasonable request; nevertheless, there is more depth to it than you can imagine. If you use all your accounts for gambling, you will end up evaporating your savings. There is a possibility that the bank will track your activity due to frequent withdrawals.
Have a separate account in any of the five banks that allow gambling in Canada. Since other than those five, Canadian banks don’t allow gambling, they can be a safe haven for your non-gambling funds. Never allow yourself to play using money in other accounts; otherwise, things are sure to get out of control.
Step 5: Take A Lot of Breaks
A smart player knows when they need to take a break. If you have been playing for many hours straight, you have to allow your brain to relax and take some time off from the gambling arena. It is recommended, though, that you avoid spending more than two hours in a row gambling.
A break is crucial after a major win or an excessive loss. If you lose, you will be devastated and will want to recover by gambling more, and if the former situation occurs, you will have the urge to double it. Hold yourself back and relax.
Step 6: Never Try to Win Back Lost Money
The worst thing you can do is make an effort to win back the lost sum of money. Why? Well, for starters, you might lose more of it. Moreover, if not, you will keep gambling for a long time beyond the preset budget boundaries.
This is when irrational thoughts will set into your mind. As you see it happen, it’s best to take a day off from gambling and view the loss as a cost of playing a regular game or entertainment. View every loss in a positive light. It’s fine if you don’t want to celebrate it. At least it’s going to save you from the temptation of recouping.
Step 7: Never Borrow Money to Play
Borrowing money to gamble is a risky thing. If you win, you will borrow in the future as well, and if you lose, you will find yourself without any money and ask your friends and family to lend you more.
Indeed, you will not have any money to spend on groceries. Believe it or not, the chances are that you might even lie to people to get your hands on money for gambling. The debt will continue to pile up and your self-respect will slide downhill. It is important to stick to your budget and money for gambling to treat it as an activity instead of an addiction.
Step 8: Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
The best thing you can do is reach out to your loved ones for help the moment you feel you are losing control or have gone too far with gambling. They are likely to be very helpful and considerate towards you. Besides, you can also seek the assistance of a multitude of Canadian organizations that specialize in dealing with gambling addiction.
These organizations know just the right tricks to get you back on track and turn the addiction around. For example, you can find a counsellor and life-changing assistance at Quebec Gambling, Northwest Territories General Helpline, British Columbia Problem Gambling Helpline, and New Brunswick Gambling Information Helpline.
What Can I Do if I Get Addicted?
The addiction stage of gambling can be awful. You will always think about gambling, all other pleasure-seeking activities will seem worthless, and you will distance yourself from everyone else. To counter the addiction, the first steps you can take are on your own.
First, try to build healthy habits like exercising, going to work on time, engaging in a sport, or meeting friends for dinner. If that doesn’t work, then turn to an organization that knows how to control gambling behavior. This post has already revealed a few reputed names dedicated to saving you from falling victim to addiction.
Another step to avoid online gambling is to find agencies that can help you block online casino sites and applications for some time. For example, you can use BetBlocker, which is a free tool allowing you to block gambling websites. Besides, Nova Scotia’s Gambling Support Network, a non-profit organization, has been around for a while now inviting calls for help.
The organization offers an ultimate solution in the form of software that can block all gambling websites and applications on all your devices. Another effective solution is Gamban, which is even easier to use. The software turns active as soon as installed on any of your devices. No gambling website may appear on the device once armed with it. Don’t let preoccupying thoughts of gambling weaken you. Rather, fight them like a warrior to overcome the addiction.
It’s clear that there is more than a thin line between gambling for fun and addiction. Pay close attention to the warning signs. And, it is better if you stick to a few verbal reminders. As you see the fun fading away and emotions creeping in, think of it as time to take a break.
Remember, gaming might be an enormous source of fun, but let it be so. Don’t treat it as a get-rich-quick formula (as addicts do). Make sure you always sign out with the same gracious smile on your face as you bear while logging in.