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Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 00:34

ALAN 135

Joined:
Before 2009

Hi rob .

I think it was pretty obvious from your first post on here that you didn't like it very much :((.

I'm nothing to do with this thread either but I am nearly 2 years gamble free so I suppose If i did join I'd be a " Guru " to which obviously I'm far from , that being said It's just a name my friend and they could easily have given the rankings as an  MBE OBE  or a Knighthood , would that have bothered you as much ? .

I think this thread is great as was Mixer's other thread as it does what it's intended to do , which is to bring people together to support each other in what is a bad time in peoples life and if there's a few laughs thrown inf or good measure then all the better I say ! .

When I first came here My recovery was and still is based on enjoying life and having a few laughs on here with people I've met and funnily enough  l was aslo told I wasn't doing things right and of " Running with a pack"  on here or having a " Pack mentality ! " well whatever it was my friend it certainly worked as I and many others who started out on that road still remain gamble free after a couple of years !. 

Youve already stated that your life is awful and I think everyone on here would feel for you as weve all been there at some point but would you not be better to put al your effort into finding some peace and happiness back in your life than just being upset about this thread  because of the fact you don't agree with the challenge .

People are trying to dig therselves out of a hole and find happiness by bonding together , is that so wrong my friend ? 

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 00:53

ItMattersMoreWh...

Joined:
2017-06-02

Hold on! You mean I won't be a real Guru in 17 days time??

;-)

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 00:54

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

Kadiz - a warm welcome to you - great to have a Striver on board; great to have you with us!

Alan135 - great post.

ItMattersMore - I hate to break it to you, but ................ :) :) :)

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 02:47

Mikeynash22

Joined:
2017-07-24

I'd love to jump on the bandwagon here. I'm 44 days in. Today was a struggle, found myself in new territory, literally. A high street I don't go to regularly and aren't barred from the 5 at least bookies I saw as I was walking to my meeting for work. Managed to veg through it though! A quick one though, do any of you find that when the gambling is being worked on, other addictions pop up? I have found myself glued to a particular game I play on my phone ( spent about £100 in 2 months on it ) and also, feeling hypersexual feelings. Thanks in advance, Mikey 

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 07:09

Athena1991

Joined:
2016-09-17

Great to have you on board Mikey! 

Well done on staying strong even when you're were  in new territory! In terms of other addictions, it is common that people try to replace addiction with something else - however, it is important to remember that there is no need to replace it with anything as you are not losing anything by not gambling :-)When i first stopped at the end of last year I found myself playing a pool game on my phone all of the time to keep myself busy which I'd spend money on - this time round I prefer to read more and visit the forums more often! So be careful about trying to replace something you don't need to and make sure you get all the benefits of not gambling! At 44 days you are doing great, and know that today can be another gf day for you! 

Great post Alan - I'm sure not taking this challenge literally but the support on here is great - well done Mixer 

Athena 

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 08:56

amt722

Joined:
2013-11-10

7 days achieved, only 22 to get to the next stage, good to have this thread as it give's me focus and I like challenges!

Thanks to Mixer and Athena. 

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 13:01

Moorey631986

Joined:
2016-09-08

Hi Mixer, just to let you know I wish to start my counter from 0 again.

Don't worry, I've not had a relaspse as such.....

I just had to pay £10 to my friend for an accumulater this weekend that I owed him. I feel so c****y for doing it and I don't know why I didn't think of an excuse on the spot. I panicked!....

Anyway, I later rung him up to say it was the last one I was doing as I was quitting gambling. I told him (for the very first time!) about all the problems I'd been having and that I no longer wished to participate anymore. He understood fully. He's a very close friend who I've found it very difficult to tell because of the contacts he has  . I don't want it to get out to certain people but I felt I had to tell him and hope that I could trust him.

My biggest mistake was not telling him how far gamble free I was. 

Anyway, whatever you may think, lame excuse or not, it happened and I can only apoligise. 

I'm not in a bad way because it's not like I've relapsed in any dramatic way. I just simply couldn't tell him on the spot and by the time I did, he'd put it on.

I could have forgotten about this and ignored it and not counted it.

But my OCD and conscience won't let me!

Anyway, sorry again.

Back to 0 for me. But I'm happier, knowing that it's the honest truth. 

I'm prepared for the 'lame excuse' blah blah blah from people but I know deep down that I'm making good progress. 

Moorey.

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 13:14

chartom3

Joined:
2015-03-11

Checking in on day 6...... plenty of urges but glad to report still gamble free, good to be part of this challenge and hoping it will help me keep focused on my recovery.

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 13:19

Athena1991

Joined:
2016-09-17

 

Hi Moorey

That was very honest post! Whilst you are back to zero, it doesnt mean you have lost focus or determination which is great! Being honest with those close to us is important, as in our journey to abstain from gabmling we certainly do not need any more temptation to gamble than we have already! I have been in the position where a friend did not know the extent of my problem, and would ask me to come to the bookies with them - which I was too easily persuaded. Now i have been honest it is one less temptation.

Carry on with your positive attitude and im sure youl build those gf days up, but just work with one day at a time - remember "stay gamble free each day because your life is better that way"!

Athena

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 13:32

laurainsky

Joined:
2017-08-04

Checking in day 14 :)

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 13:47

Moorey631986

Joined:
2016-09-08

 

Athena1991 wrote:

 

Hi Moorey

That was very honest post! Whilst you are back to zero, it doesnt mean you have lost focus or determination which is great! Being honest with those close to us is important, as in our journey to abstain from gabmling we certainly do not need any more temptation to gamble than we have already! I have been in the position where a friend did not know the extent of my problem, and would ask me to come to the bookies with them - which I was too easily persuaded. Now i have been honest it is one less temptation.

Carry on with your positive attitude and im sure youl build those gf days up, but just work with one day at a time - remember "stay gamble free each day because your life is better that way"!

Athena

Thanks for your understanding and support! 

As compulsive gamblers we do have a tendency to lie and make things up to get what we want....

But this is truly not the case.

I panicked and thought I could get out of the situation without having to open up to him about my problems....

But it just led to a nagging thought in my head that I'd broken the rules (which technically I have!). That's why I'm so annoyed with myself. I had no urges whatsoever. I simply wanted to brush off any awkwardness and forget about it.... Only I couldn't forget about it as it didn't feel right.

So.... I'm back to Day 0. But not in anyway further damaged, financially, my spirits are still high and I'm proud that my conscience is taking this very seriously and not being blarzay(?) about it. 

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 16:33

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

Hi Deano - it's great to get back in touch with you again and sincerely hope you're keeping well. And notice that you're almost a year gambling free so I "doff my hat" in your direction, sir. Thank you for your kind words and do not fear - I never let the b*****s grind me down :)

Moorey - may I echo Athena's fantastic comments and applaud your honesty. In keeping with the spirit of the challenge, and, indeed what it is to be gambling-free you are, quite rightly, back to Day 1 BUT stronger, wiser and I sense you are really going to bounce back from this. You are taking this challenge seriously, and, day by day, will get up to, and more than surpass, your old total.

Laurainsky - 2 weeks GF - yay! You are really showing your intent. This is what we like to see. You're doing great!

Chartom - you're building your total up and coming up to a week gambling free. Let's hit that target tomorrow, and take things, day by day, from there. Thank you for checking in; you're an important part of this challenge and because it matters to you, it matters to us.

Amt722 - we are delighted to have you aboard and looking ahead to manageable GF targets. Yes; it's always day to day but there's no harm in making planning the short/medium term and how you intend to make the best of the GF lifestyle. That's what is all about, right - a better life for us AND our loved ones too? A win-win!

Athena - I love your very catchy saying and how true it is. "Stay gamble free each day, because your life is better that way!". How true that is.

Let's keep GF today and plan a great GF day tomorrow - for once, although it's payday for so many of us, let's not throw our money away - JUST FOR ONCE we're gonna take the happy path - wasting that cash is always just pure misery!

 

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 16:44

Raj

Joined:
2017-07-05

5 days gambling free..now looking to join a gym. Positives are coming out of this.

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 16:48

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

Excellent, Raj, excellent ... you're thinking about the TIME that's wasted by gambling and putting it into good use ... good thinking, my friend.

Posted on:
Thu, 24/08/2017 - 22:43

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

 

Here's to a GF Friday, everyone.

And we'll have a rollcall in a few days ... Stand By :) !

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 00:27

Sidney

Joined:
2017-08-22

It's been a long time since I've ever been a nubie In any thing I've taken part in but here I am 43 yr old and a newbie. Sad times!!

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 06:20

Athena1991

Joined:
2016-09-17

 

 

Sidney great to have you on here! There are lots of newbies on here Taking it one day at a time and before you know it we will be pushing guru status!

Keep going and have  a wonderful gf day!

Athena

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 08:54

rubybaby123

Joined:
2017-07-31

Checking in. 28 days gf today :) today is going to be a good day!

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 12:16

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

*** IMPORTANT ! ***

It's the 25th August today, payday for some, and a sunny Bank Holiday for others; whatever your circumstances, this may be a mini-mountain to climb as we continue our day-to-day Gambling Free (GF) journey.

Let's keep reminding ourselves we we're doing this. It's  for ourselves, and likely our loved ones and friends, too.

Let's looking after that non-gambling 'angel' on our shoulder today. We'll be rewarded ten-fold with a better GF life today. And tomorrow, let's welcome back that angel who really wants us to have a better life.

And if the gambling devil suddenly pops on our shoulders, we must immediately flick him off (or tell him to flick off, if you get my drift :) )

Let's keep strong, keep UNITED, and TODAY, keep Gambling Free.

As Rubybaby so rightly says in her post above - Today is going to be a Good Day !!!!

 

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 12:42

Moorey631986

Joined:
2016-09-08

I'll second that Mixer!...

And wise words too from Ruby and Athena. Today will be a good day!

No matter what happens today, whether you're struggling or having a difficult day, a non gambling day ensures that it's a more successful day than if you were having a good day where you are gambling....

I hope that makes sense!?

Basically, a non gambling day trumps EVERYTHING else.

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 16:50

kadiz1

Joined:
2016-11-24

Day 83.

Hit new target today, two consecutive pays without gambling.

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 17:10

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

Excellent kadiz, that's great. Showing real character, real determination. 

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 17:29

Athena1991

Joined:
2016-09-17

Well done Kadiz - this is my first payday which i can report has gone well and I am completely gamble free :-) 

Hope everybody is having a good gf day and will check into chat later.

Athena

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 21:34

cardhue

Joined:
2013-01-18

ALAN 135 wrote:

Hi rob .

I think it was pretty obvious from your first post on here that you didn't like it very much :((.

I'm nothing to do with this thread either but I am nearly 2 years gamble free so I suppose If i did join I'd be a " Guru " to which obviously I'm far from , that being said It's just a name my friend and they could easily have given the rankings as an  MBE OBE  or a Knighthood , would that have bothered you as much ? .

I think this thread is great as was Mixer's other thread as it does what it's intended to do , which is to bring people together to support each other in what is a bad time in peoples life and if there's a few laughs thrown inf or good measure then all the better I say ! .

When I first came here My recovery was and still is based on enjoying life and having a few laughs on here with people I've met and funnily enough  l was aslo told I wasn't doing things right and of " Running with a pack"  on here or having a " Pack mentality ! " well whatever it was my friend it certainly worked as I and many others who started out on that road still remain gamble free after a couple of years !. 

Youve already stated that your life is awful and I think everyone on here would feel for you as weve all been there at some point but would you not be better to put al your effort into finding some peace and happiness back in your life than just being upset about this thread  because of the fact you don't agree with the challenge .

People are trying to dig therselves out of a hole and find happiness by bonding together , is that so wrong my friend ? 

I share Rob's unease about these types of thread. It's fine for what it is. Saying that, I'm not too sure what it is. It's obviously not just strict day counting but seeking something higher. Some kind of positivity tsunami. The idea that if we all pool our positive energy together then this will lift us up to a higher place.

I can see it's harmless, unless you're relying on this in any way to bring about any kind of genuine change. If this is a substitution for genuine change then it's counter-productive and stops being harmless. As it creates the illusion of being something significant.

I also think people have totally misunderstood Rob's point. I don't think Rob was making the point that he is in a terrible place nor that his life is awful (where did he say that?). It seems like people are dismissing his points as the ramblings of a depressed person. I don't know if doing so is being cynically dismissive (his opinion doesn't count as he's having a bad one), or just genuinely not getting it (whoosh).

If this thread isn't a house of cards it should stand scrutiny.

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 22:28

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

Hi Cardhue,

Thank you for your comments, and, as I wrote in response to Robf's latest post, it's your perogative and rest assured, never a problem to me. I would like the opportunity to respond, if I may. 

Firstly, you say you share Robf's unease about these kind of threads (i.e. Challenge threads), however say it's fine for what it is, but not sure what it is; I'll try to illuminate.

It WILL be about counting the days, but weekly, as the very first post in this thread states. We haven't been up a week yet, but have had a provisional first rollcall and another will follow on Sunday. I'm just getting together, and will discuss with my fellow host Athena - who, by the way, has been amazingly encouraging on this thread, in my opinion - the format and structure of the rollcalls. But rest assured every member of this thread will have their GF count listed, along with the fun, but hopefully inspiring, 'status' according to the number of days GF.

So, to clarify your point, yes, there will be strict counting, on a weekly basis, similar in vein to the other established Challenges on these forums.

Is this challenge seeking something higher? I can't say I've thought about that; the best answer I can give is that it's intend to be positive and spirited, for sure, but not spiritual. That said, those of us following the Gambling Anonymous steps will be aware of a higher plane as part of their recovery strategy, but certainly this thread isn't consiously following this course of action.

Your statement "I can see it's harmless, unless you're relying on this in any way to bring about any kind of genuine change" is, of course, the 'incoming', your carefully-crafted 'zinger'. 

Here's my take. You might not find it brings any change, but others might find it helps. And I said helps - it's not a panacea, we all know gambling addiction is an extremely complex beast, and the positive tsunami that this thread brings - I actually like, and will use, that phrase -  is but one of a multitude of directions, tools and approaches that might help.

Also, are you tarring the other Challenges with the same brush? 

You ask, is this thread counter-productive and not harmless, i.e. actually damaging? Please be most assured that would horrify me and I would like to think anyone who is part of the thread. Is this thread significant? Not in the scheme of things; but I suppose it's for others to judge how useful it turns out to be. It's but one of many, many channels recovering gamblers like us might consider useful, as I've already covered. 

As regards how Robf was making his point, he is the best one to answer that question, we can both speculate but I personally feel that is unfair without his implicit permission; I would feel uncomfortable, and don't feel it's right, speaking on someone else's behalf. I believe, with respect, we have to show Robf some consideration.

I do agree that this thread should stand scrutiny - absolutely. You can be most assured Gamcare are - quite rightly - keeping a VERY close eye on this thread. As soon as you invite others to any sort of communal challenge it must be done correctly and responsibly. (And having personally left a successful Challenge in the lurch before - I have held my hands up - I am certainly 'on probation'. Hence why Athena has kindly offered to co-host, and hosting is open to anyone, to help ensure continuity once it's all established).

So, if this thread turns out to be anything other than what it says 'on the tin' - a site with a positive vibe and weekly rollcall - you can be sure that Gamcare will act.

Thank you, cardhue, for your comments, sincerely made. I have, in turn, made a sincere reply, and, thinking about what you've written, have tailored the 'Welcome' message slightly to make sure that any reader understands that this thread may be useful to them, but to bear in mind it's just one of many useful tools and appraches out there. I do listen, cardhue, and have taken on board the points you've raised.

(I've also made clear, in the 'Welcome' threads, in light of Robf's comments, that 300-days GF does not really make you some kind of Guru, in case anyone thought I was being literal. Hopefully this assuages Robf's concerns. And I'm not being facetious here; I never mock because everyone on these forums is trying to deal with this condition we all have, that's what bonds us all and that's what's important.)

I wish you well, cardhue, and a GF day today. In fact I wish everyone a GF day today!

 

 

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 23:30

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

*** ROLLCALL COMING! ****

Just to advise that rollcalls will be made weekly, provisionally on Sundays, from this Sunday!

Athena and I will be talking to each other, within the forums, about how we'll set the first one up. Any subsequent suggestions once we've put it out there will be more than welcome!

Have an enjoyable evening everyone and here's to a wonderfully GF day tomorrow! 

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 23:31

ALAN 135

Joined:
Before 2009

Sorry to jump in Mixer / Louis ( Cardhue ) .

But Rob did say in post 43 of this thread that " He gambles because his life is awful " so just to clarify that's where I got the impression from as Louis used my post to reiterate his post  .

All the best  Guys :)) 

Posted on:
Fri, 25/08/2017 - 23:38

ALAN 135

Joined:
Before 2009

And what is it this week about people not being allowed to be positive ? Firstly [email protected] now Louis ! 

Without positivity you have nothing except hope , so shall we chuck that away as well ? 

Posted on:
Sat, 26/08/2017 - 00:03

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

Hi Alan,

Thank you for your support of the principles behind this thread - particularly, the spirit of positivity that we are trying to foster. 

It does seem that a number of footballs are being kicked over the fence to this thread lately; precisely how muddy I will give the benefit of the doubt. Regardless, we will keep trying to grow a fertile, fruitful garden, for all participants to benefit from and enjoy.

We will NOT be daunted. Positivity WILL win the day!

All the very best Alan,

Mixer 

 

 

 

Posted on:
Sat, 26/08/2017 - 02:30

Sars27

Joined:
2017-06-02

There's always one . Let's just be happy and stay postive ! Thank you for encouraging us mixer !  Thanks for supporting Alan ! You guys are definitely helping us addicts ! And yes Robf says "he gambles because his life is awful".

Stay positive and happy everyone!

Sars 

Posted on:
Sat, 26/08/2017 - 06:24

volcano

Joined:
2010-07-05

 

Mixer wrote:

Hi Cardhue,

Thank you for your comments, and, as I wrote in response to Robf's latest post, it's your perogative and rest assured, never a problem to me. I would like the opportunity to respond, if I may. 

Firstly, you say you share Robf's unease about these kind of threads (i.e. Challenge threads), however say it's fine for what it is, but not sure what it is; I'll try to illuminate.

It WILL be about counting the days, but weekly, as the very first post in this thread states. We haven't been up a week yet, but have had a provisional first rollcall and another will follow on Sunday. I'm just getting together, and will discuss with my fellow host Athena - who, by the way, has been amazingly encouraging on this thread, in my opinion - the format and structure of the rollcalls. But rest assured every member of this thread will have their GF count listed, along with the fun, but hopefully inspiring, 'status' according to the number of days GF.

So, to clarify your point, yes, there will be strict counting, on a weekly basis, similar in vein to the other established Challenges on these forums.

Is this challenge seeking something higher? I can't say I've thought about that; the best answer I can give is that it's intend to be positive and spirited, for sure, but not spiritual. That said, those of us following the Gambling Anonymous steps will be aware of a higher plane as part of their recovery strategy, but certainly this thread isn't consiously following this course of action.

Your statement "I can see it's harmless, unless you're relying on this in any way to bring about any kind of genuine change" is, of course, the 'incoming', your carefully-crafted 'zinger'. 

Here's my take. You might not find it brings any change, but others might find it helps. And I said helps - it's not a panacea, we all know gambling addiction is an extremely complex beast, and the positive tsunami that this thread brings - I actually like, and will use, that phrase -  is but one of a multitude of directions, tools and approaches that might help.

Also, are you tarring the other Challenges with the same brush? 

You ask, is this thread counter-productive and not harmless, i.e. actually damaging? Please be most assured that would horrify me and I would like to think anyone who is part of the thread. Is this thread significant? Not in the scheme of things; but I suppose it's for others to judge how useful it turns out to be. It's but one of many, many channels recovering gamblers like us might consider useful, as I've already covered. 

As regards how Robf was making his point, he is the best one to answer that question, we can both speculate but I personally feel that is unfair without his implicit permission; I would feel uncomfortable, and don't feel it's right, speaking on someone else's behalf. I believe, with respect, we have to show Robf some consideration.

I do agree that this thread should stand scrutiny - absolutely. You can be most assured Gamcare are - quite rightly - keeping a VERY close eye on this thread. As soon as you invite others to any sort of communal challenge it must be done correctly and responsibly. (And having personally left a successful Challenge in the lurch before - I have held my hands up - I am certainly 'on probation'. Hence why Athena has kindly offered to co-host, and hosting is open to anyone, to help ensure continuity once it's all established).

So, if this thread turns out to be anything other than what it says 'on the tin' - a site with a positive vibe and weekly rollcall - you can be sure that Gamcare will act.

Thank you, cardhue, for your comments, sincerely made. I have, in turn, made a sincere reply, and, thinking about what you've written, have tailored the 'Welcome' message slightly to make sure that any reader understands that this thread may be useful to them, but to bear in mind it's just one of many useful tools and appraches out there. I do listen, cardhue, and have taken on board the points you've raised.

(I've also made clear, in the 'Welcome' threads, in light of Robf's comments, that 300-days GF does not really make you some kind of Guru, in case anyone thought I was being literal. Hopefully this assuages Robf's concerns. And I'm not being facetious here; I never mock because everyone on these forums is trying to deal with this condition we all have, that's what bonds us all and that's what's important.)

I wish you well, cardhue, and a GF day today. In fact I wish everyone a GF day today!

 

 

A well articulated response there Mixer, and kudos for taking some what I regard well meaning points on board.. 

So Mixer and amigos I will wish you well in any help this thread may bring.

Posted on:
Sat, 26/08/2017 - 08:06

alainepo

Joined:
2016-07-27

Keep the positivity going Mixer and the rest of you guys who appreciate this thread for what it is (it is a nice, friendly, well meaning thread IMO). Lovely to see the Mixer effect back in full flow, i am thankful for the time you spend on here and the effort you put into your positive posting. You are not one to get dragged down by other's questioning of your good intentions and i think a lot of people are very glad to have you. Keep it going Mixer it is appreciated always by myself.

Posted on:
Sat, 26/08/2017 - 09:40

laurainsky

Joined:
2017-08-04

Day 16 and I'm struggling...just opened a casino website, clicked deposit before closing the tab :( I don't know why, a quick buzz? instant cash?

My boyfriend is at work today and my kids are with their dad so I'm going to have ample opportunities to gamble today.

I don't want to post "day 1" tomorrow...

Posted on:
Sat, 26/08/2017 - 10:24

Athena1991

Joined:
2016-09-17

Well put mixer - only positivity and encouragement in this thread :-) Laura stay strong it might be difficult because you are alone but take yourself back to the place you were when gambling made your life miserable remember the stress anxiety and upset it caused and stay away! I know you can do it.

Athena

 

Posted on:
Sat, 26/08/2017 - 11:23

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

 

Alan, your posts are great; there are "no flies on you" !

 

Sars - thank you and well done for another day GF, cruising - dare I say it - to a very important milestone indeed! But always one happy GF day at a time. Enjoy the weekend my man!

Volcano - really appreciate your post; you're right, It's good to listen to constructive criticism and hopefully for those of us for whom this isn't their cup of tea can respectfully leave it for those of us for whom it might help. All the very best to you.

Laura - you are doing the right thing diving on here and Athena's advice is bang on the money. Remember, you cant gamble without one of these three; money, location and time. You've got the time so one of the other three has to go. Give your card to a trusted friend, or self-excluded from every online casino you can think of! You WILL thank yourself if you don't gamble today. Remember - in one hour, you can gamble a whole week's wages. There are 168 hours in a week. Don't spend 167 skint, miserable hours regretting it!    

Alainepo - thank you for your very kind words that are appreciated like you won't believe! And you're right - I always make sure I'm on top of whatever brickbats come this thread's way - the trick is, I've found in life, is to be consistently polite and respectful. You can cut through most obstacles in life with those two things alone. Thanks again, and here's to a haopy, day by day, GF journey for you and your loved ones.

 

It's Saturday; let's open that GF curtain, let the light in, and life a live how we deserve to live it - let's leave misery outside the back door!  

"Just for today - we will not gamble!"

Posted on:
Sat, 26/08/2017 - 14:17

Phil72

Joined:
2016-10-07

I sense the terminology such as "guru" and "elder" are being used light-heartedly? Of course, this is a serious addiction to tackle but I see no harm in lightening up a bit and it seems many people are enjoying this challenge. Keep up the good work Mixer and Anthea.

Posted on:
Sun, 27/08/2017 - 10:03

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

*** SUNDAY SMILE ***

A man went to the Police Station wishing to speak with the burglar who had broken into his house the night before.

"You'll get your chance in court." said the Desk Sergeant.

"No, no, no!" said the man. "You don't understand. I want to know how he got into the house without waking my wife; I've been trying to do that for years!"

*** WEEKLY ROLLCALL LATER TODAY - have a great GF day everyone! ***

Posted on:
Sun, 27/08/2017 - 12:01

rubybaby123

Joined:
2017-07-31

30 days gf today :)

Sun is shining, life feels good today

Have a fab gf day all xxx

Posted on:
Sun, 27/08/2017 - 12:12

Abstainer

Joined:
2017-05-10

Abstainer checking in with 108 GF Days . Well done Mixer & Athena , great light hearted positivity about this thread . 

Posted on:
Sun, 27/08/2017 - 12:14

breakfree

Joined:
2011-01-01

Breakfree checking in with 9 days GF, it's been a good start to a better life.
Have a great Sunday everyone.

Posted on:
Sun, 27/08/2017 - 13:51

antics

Joined:
2017-07-30

Checking in on 7 days GF, hope everyone on board is doing well!

Posted on:
Sun, 27/08/2017 - 17:37

Sars27

Joined:
2017-06-02

Checking in ! 86 days GF :) 

Posted on:
Sun, 27/08/2017 - 20:02

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

*** GURU CHALLENGE -  2nd WEEKLY ROLLCALL! *** 

Firstly, congratulations to RubyBaby hitting 30 days and now a STRIVER! And we cannot let Degenerate's passing of 150 amazing GF days go amiss, either; and, Abstainer, you hit 100 days not so long ago so you also form part of our Rollcall of Honour this week.

We are 18 strong and - always one day at a time, of course - here's to more GF days to come. Enjoy BH Monday, everyone!

GURUs

Places Available!

ELDERs

Degenerate - 152, Abstainer - 108

STRIVERs

ItMatters - 86, Sars27 - 86, Kadiz1 - 85, MikeyNash – 22,RubyBaby - 30

NEWBIEs

LaurainSky - 17, Mixer - 16, Athena1991 - 12, Bornagain - 12, Xenedra - 11, Amt722 - 10, Chartom3 - 9, Raj - 8, Antics - 7, Moorey - 3, Sidney - 2

Posted on:
Sun, 27/08/2017 - 20:25

chartom3

Joined:
2015-03-11

Sorry to let everyone down who has supported me on here but i have been gambling again with the inevitable outcome and added to my problems...... so tomorrow is day 1 for me yet again, sorry Mixer & Athena for messing up your weekly rollcall i know how much time you put into doing this challenge.

Posted on:
Sun, 27/08/2017 - 21:14

degenerate

Joined:
2013-05-10

Thanks Mixer. I am sure you will get to Day 150 yourself along with everyone here.

@Chartom3 Stay committed and do not let a lapse become a relapse. You need to restart recovery before you lose all available funds.

Posted on:
Mon, 28/08/2017 - 09:21

Abstainer

Joined:
2017-05-10

Thankyou and well done Mixer , great work with the weekly roll call .

Wishing you and all GamCare friends success in their recovery , I believe this is an opportune moment for us to bury the past and move on , one day at a time .

We have all experienced negative emotions and turned to gambling for comfort . It only brings more pain and we really don't want to go back to that horrible place .

 

 

 

 

 

Posted on:
Mon, 28/08/2017 - 11:33

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

*** MIXER's MISERY CALCULATOR - And turning the frowns upside down :) ***

Author's Note: The following is a hard-hitting article, but one with a positive message: when we foresee the misery we're building up when we gamble, there is something we can do about it. 

We're (recovering) compulsive gamblers - which means we can never win (Fact.). If we do 'win', any winnings become gambling 'tokens' that we keep playing until we lose. And then we lose some more. In other words, we always lose.

This constant cycle of lose-lose-lose-lose-lose brings misery, not just to us, and how we act and feel, but our friends and loved who indirectly (and sometimes, sadly, directly) feel the repurcussions.

But how much misery? Let's find out, using my misery calculator. If you're thinking of gambling, or have recently gambled, you may wish to try this. Warning - it's sobering.

  • Step 1. Work out your disposable income. That's your weekly/monthly net income minus all of your bills, food, car, travel and other costs you have to pay for. Disposable income is money you're free to spend on anything. For example: Monthly net income £1600. Bills £1200. Disposable income = £400 per month. Or Weekly net income £400. Bills £300. Disposable income = £100 per week.
  • Step 2. Work out your daily disposable income by 30 if you get paid monthly, or 7 if you get paid weekly. For example, Monthly disposable income £400, divided by 30 = £14 per day Or Weekly disposable income £100, divided by 7 = £14 per day
  • Step 3. How much did you spend, or intend to spend in your last gambing session (e.g. £100).
  • Step 4. Divide how much you spent by your daily disposable income amount (e.g. £100 divided by £14 = 7).
  • Step 5. The result (e.g. 7) is how many day's disposable income has just been wasted. Divide the total by 24 (the number of hours in a day), and that's how many hours of skint, miserable regret that's been built up for the future. So, wasting 7 days income = 168 hours of regret

 

I realise this post may be a bit of a jolt to some and I have to say, I applied it to my last binge before I stopped gambling a mere 16 days ago. I blew 28 days of my disposable income in one evening, and am still going through the 772 (!!!) hours of regret caused by this rash, reckless action. I personally still feel as raw as I did on Day 1. I have suffered, my family has lost out and that's why I am going GF with a vengance. I have banned myself from all local bookies, am soon to start counselling, have a diary on here, help with this challenge, have come (fairly) clean with my loved ones, handed financial control to my wife - whatever it takes, frankly.

My non-gambling side of my brain is in a constant battle with my more-cunning gambling side; and the non-gambling side must win. (Do you feel the same...?)

There is a school of thought that says: it's disposable income, so I can do what I want with it? That's entirely true. But the all-too-real danger is that, when the disposable income's wasted away, the non-disposable income gets eaten into, leading to debt (as many of us are, sadly, acutely aware of). And let's consider the value of money - disposable income buys goods, services, time and convenience; all things that makes life better for us - and our loved ones. We should cherish this extra cash!

The thing about our condition is that we don't always think logical - if we did, we wouldn't gamble. But we're implementing measures to help manage this gambling devil, and if we do lapse, we can try to close of the gambling avenue we found ourselves down. And take other measures.

I hope this post is helpful. You may find it sows an additonal seed for when we're tempted - and that includes meIt is never to late to start today and to do something to counter the regret to come.

On a brighter note, I hope you're enjoying this Bank Holiday and here's to an enjoyable week ahead.

 

Posted on:
Mon, 28/08/2017 - 12:24

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

Abstainer - thank you for your kind words and you're exactly right - we mustn't return to the gambling world, it's too painful and the gambling-world is a comparative polar opposite - life as it's meant to be lived.

Chartom3 - I'm sorry to read you've had a relapse; and you've been honest about it, which is always to be respected. I've visited your thread and think Alan's comments are well worth a re-read because you do appear to be caught in a rut right now (hey, I've been there!). Think about what caused this relapse, Chartom; was it money, time or location? What can you do to remove one of these impediments in case you're tempted to gamble next time? Wishing you the best of luck, as always :)

Xenedra - I've just read your diary and really sorry to hear of your relapse too. As you have said, despite the blocks you've applied to your home devices, you have used, for the first time a work laptop and, as you know, you've got to be SO careful there. You know you must NEVER do that again ...it's just too risky. But look... you know you've just had a hard landing and you know, deep down, that you'll not consider mixing the business and "pleasure" route again. It's a time for reflection and, whilst you lick your wounds (understandably) think: Right; I'm going to double and redouble my efforts to tame this beast! How can you plug the gaps in your strategy? Certainly, you'll not use any work devcies again. But are there any other sneaky gambling outlets your gambling brian has in it's mind's eye ... time to plug them, too! Good luck, Xendera,we are always with you :)

*** TIP OF THE DAY ***

Keeping track of your spending, day to day, can help encourage and spur on our gambling-free journey.

This might be helpfully as part of your non-gamblaing 'armoury'. Why not get a calendar, and on every day, have (up to) three columns:

  • in the first column, note your gambling spend (of course, this should be £0 :) )
  • the the second column, note how much you've disposable income you've spent (free spending money)
  • in the third (optional) column, you might want to note something else of interest. I've noted how many pints of lager I'm drinking that day. (I've noticed a correlation between my drinking and gambling.)

Yesterday, for example, my three figures were: £0, £2, 2 (pints). 

Every week, I tally up the "scores" and share them with my wife and even my mum. I want to report good news. I want to share my positive progress. If anyone else finds this idea useful... it's all yours!

 

Posted on:
Mon, 28/08/2017 - 21:09

cardhue

Joined:
2013-01-18

Mixer wrote:

Hi Cardhue,

Thank you for your comments, and, as I wrote in response to Robf's latest post, it's your perogative and rest assured, never a problem to me. I would like the opportunity to respond, if I may. 

Firstly, you say you share Robf's unease about these kind of threads (i.e. Challenge threads), however say it's fine for what it is, but not sure what it is; I'll try to illuminate.

It WILL be about counting the days, but weekly, as the very first post in this thread states. We haven't been up a week yet, but have had a provisional first rollcall and another will follow on Sunday. I'm just getting together, and will discuss with my fellow host Athena - who, by the way, has been amazingly encouraging on this thread, in my opinion - the format and structure of the rollcalls. But rest assured every member of this thread will have their GF count listed, along with the fun, but hopefully inspiring, 'status' according to the number of days GF.

So, to clarify your point, yes, there will be strict counting, on a weekly basis, similar in vein to the other established Challenges on these forums.

Is this challenge seeking something higher? I can't say I've thought about that; the best answer I can give is that it's intend to be positive and spirited, for sure, but not spiritual. That said, those of us following the Gambling Anonymous steps will be aware of a higher plane as part of their recovery strategy, but certainly this thread isn't consiously following this course of action.

Your statement "I can see it's harmless, unless you're relying on this in any way to bring about any kind of genuine change" is, of course, the 'incoming', your carefully-crafted 'zinger'. 

Here's my take. You might not find it brings any change, but others might find it helps. And I said helps - it's not a panacea, we all know gambling addiction is an extremely complex beast, and the positive tsunami that this thread brings - I actually like, and will use, that phrase -  is but one of a multitude of directions, tools and approaches that might help.

Also, are you tarring the other Challenges with the same brush? 

You ask, is this thread counter-productive and not harmless, i.e. actually damaging? Please be most assured that would horrify me and I would like to think anyone who is part of the thread. Is this thread significant? Not in the scheme of things; but I suppose it's for others to judge how useful it turns out to be. It's but one of many, many channels recovering gamblers like us might consider useful, as I've already covered. 

As regards how Robf was making his point, he is the best one to answer that question, we can both speculate but I personally feel that is unfair without his implicit permission; I would feel uncomfortable, and don't feel it's right, speaking on someone else's behalf. I believe, with respect, we have to show Robf some consideration.

I do agree that this thread should stand scrutiny - absolutely. You can be most assured Gamcare are - quite rightly - keeping a VERY close eye on this thread. As soon as you invite others to any sort of communal challenge it must be done correctly and responsibly. (And having personally left a successful Challenge in the lurch before - I have held my hands up - I am certainly 'on probation'. Hence why Athena has kindly offered to co-host, and hosting is open to anyone, to help ensure continuity once it's all established).

So, if this thread turns out to be anything other than what it says 'on the tin' - a site with a positive vibe and weekly rollcall - you can be sure that Gamcare will act.

Thank you, cardhue, for your comments, sincerely made. I have, in turn, made a sincere reply, and, thinking about what you've written, have tailored the 'Welcome' message slightly to make sure that any reader understands that this thread may be useful to them, but to bear in mind it's just one of many useful tools and appraches out there. I do listen, cardhue, and have taken on board the points you've raised.

(I've also made clear, in the 'Welcome' threads, in light of Robf's comments, that 300-days GF does not really make you some kind of Guru, in case anyone thought I was being literal. Hopefully this assuages Robf's concerns. And I'm not being facetious here; I never mock because everyone on these forums is trying to deal with this condition we all have, that's what bonds us all and that's what's important.)

I wish you well, cardhue, and a GF day today. In fact I wish everyone a GF day today!

 

 

thanks mixer for your detailed response. I can see you really tried to engage with the point I was making, rather than discredit me personally, which is an all too common response on here.

A couple of preliminaries...

I don't intend to respond further on this thread. Whilst I'm happy to read any response, please do not feel obliged. You've already given me much of your time.

Well said re Robf. You've helped me see that I was using him as a piggy back into the arena. I should've been more direct.

Re your Q - my view re this thread applies to any challenge thread.

final preliminary - I shouldn't have to say this, but as a supporter of yours alluded to me querying your 'intentions' - to be clear, I can clearly see you are investing considerable energy from a point of utmost sincerity. (I would also note that you have unusually good communication and leadership skills.)

I'm less concerned about people who are doing this thread as one 'tool' among other more substantive ones eg, attending counselling/ opening up to loved ones etc.

Even here though I have core concerns. I query the point in excessive promotion of day counting. Day counting cannot be a means to an end. If thats THE goal then it's a hollow one. You're not going to address your addiction by day counting. If all you do is day count then, without addressing deeper issues, then you will probably fail.

I am in favour of congratulating
/encouraging someone who takes a brave decision. For example, coming on here for the first time, opening up to a loved one, revealing a painful/shameful secret, or doing a specific act which is outside their comfort zone. But continual (daily or weekly) congratulating I see as a double edged sword.

Yes, the mere act of not gambling is an achievement, particularly in very early days. But you're also in danger of rewarding people for doing not a lot (and often being clearly harmful to others by lying). Yet just by not gambling you enter a world of continual praise.

I would be more sympathetic if I thought that mere day counting directly led to self-improvement. But IMO that's clearly not so. We weren't issue free before we became addicts, otherwise we wouldn't be addicts. Gambling didn't f- us up, we were already so.

Ok, so its true that whatever our underlying issue, gambling always makes things worse. So, if we remove gambling we improve. We remove some of the chaos and self - sabotage. But, let's say you started gambling addictively in 2010. In 2009 you've got these underlying issues bubbling away, shortly to latch onto gambling addiction.

If the aim is now to day count and not gamble, then the best you do is get to your 2009, pre - addiction state. Ok if you're very lucky you might avoid gambling as your poisonous outlet, but, without having tackled any issues, 2010 still awaits you.

I can foresee the argument - 'but wait, at least with 'daylight ' we can im the future address underlying issues. Sounds good In practice, but maybe it gets kind of comfy just day counting and basking in the praise..maybe I'll just hang around here after all.. Then next thing it's off the wagon....

But my primary concern is for people who might, for example, adopt a recovery approach involving putting some blocks in place and joining the challenge. There's a reason why it's a lot easier to join a challenge than, say, tell your OH about your addiction. Far easier to give praise and know that the praise is gona come right back in no time - so long as the counter keeps ticking.

Last point is about 'positivity', which is really a response to others. People seem confused between the merits of having a positive outlook, and 'positive thinking' as a means of recovery. I'm all for having a positive outlook, but strongly disagree that you achieve this through positive thinking.

Positive thinking is widely discredited now as a form of therapy. There's a really simple reason for this - because you can't control your thoughts. If we could control our thoughts and think positively all the time then we'd have been all over this a long time ago.

IMO a focus of recovery is how to deal effectively with difficulties. That's a hard sell for addicts entering recovery - I realise that.

I think that what I'm alluding to is positive. I'm suggesting that you can do more than mere day counting. You can actually change if you want to. You can do better than return to 2009. You can become who you really, deep down, want to be.

Thanks again Mixer for your time.

Louis

Posted on:
Mon, 28/08/2017 - 21:45

Mixer

Joined:
2016-12-03

Hi Louis (Cardhue),

Thank you very much for your post, which has given me genuine food for thought. I will certainly respond, but need to carefully think and digest about some of the more technical aspects you have raised. I'd rather write, and I am sure you would rather receive, a considered reply rather than a rushed one. It'll take me a day or two. 

One point you raised made me smile, though: all day I've been pondering removing the GF day count and simply grouping Challenge members by their level (Newbie, Striver etc.). I did wonder if a daily counter was too much of an impediment, especially in the early days, and possibly a curse as times goes on (it was interesting to read you raising the same kind of point). It would be something I'd consider consulting with our Challenge members. 

But it's the key points you've raised I need to ponder most. 

I now have the measure of you, and you me, and I think the fruits of our discourse will result in a better, more focused 'Challenge', or whatever else emanates (key phrase), for which I can most profitably use the time I am prepared to spend at this website. And I know you also have your heart in the right place, as the quality time you spend here testifies. 

Unless you have any objections, would you mind if I reply on your thread. My reply is likely to be lengthy. But anyone reading this thread is welcome to read it of course! 

All the best

Mixer

 

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