in an article about addiction, a stylized illustration of a brain

How To Overcome Compulsive Thoughts and Habits

It's not easy, but with help, you can do it.
July 24, 2020
7 mins read

Complex subjects like addiction and compulsive behavior are highly perplexing topics because there are so many different lenses that one can use to look at the problem — and it’s even more complicated to find a solution.

Start at The Root or Address the Symptoms?

The first thing that we would have to address is whether compulsive behavior and addiction can be even defined as a problem. This is because modern-day thinkers have used different words and reasons to justify behavioral trends. In the past, an alcoholic would be defined as someone who has a problem with alcohol because they find it very difficult to say no.

This was essentially a character flaw where they yielded to bad habits and over time got locked into a vice where the person no longer had control over the bottle, but the bottle had control over the person.

In modern times, alcoholism is no longer viewed as a character flaw or the weakness of an individual. It is now considered an illness and the person living with it has to be treated to overcome it.

Whether it is alcoholism, drug addiction or another vice, one must address the question as to whether you want to deal with just the symptoms or whether one needs to go deeper into the real source of the addiction.

The answer to this question will end up resting on the perspective of the person you end up discussing the topic with. Here are both views that address some of the most common addictions that 21st century people battle on a daily basis.

How To Overcome Alcoholism

One of the biggest answers to alcoholism over the last few decades has been Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). Their 12-step program has worked for millions of individuals all over the world who have battled alcoholism. The program starts with “My name is X and I am an alcoholic” — which is admission and takes you through a journey where you take it one day at a time and become accountable to a buddy who helps you on the journey to recovery.

While AA has worked for millions it has also failed a lot of people — which just goes to show that it is not a one-shoe-fits-all solution.

How To Overcome Gambling Addiction

The land-based and online gambling industry has grown in leaps and bounds over the last decades but in the process, so has the number of problem gamblers. This is a select group of players who have a tendency to gamble compulsively or have already got themselves locked into gambling addiction.

Problem gamblers become experts at hiding their addiction from family members and close friends. This is because it is a lot easier to hide gambling addiction than other addictions like alcoholism and drug abuse. The first step to combat gambling addiction, just like any other addiction, is to admit that there is a problem and then to look at ways to address the problem.

The two biggest ways to address problem gambling is to get counseling through organizations like GamCare and Gamblers Anonymous. This is where players will have to check in for sessions or for an extended stay depending on how severe their addiction is and what is the prescribed treatment.

The second way is more a prevention than a cure, because it requires self-will for a player to take advantage of problem gambling tools or self-exclusion resources that are generally available at most reputed and licensed online casinos. In the case of a gambling addiction, some casinos offer features that allow you to set how much are willing to lose.

These problem gambling resources will allow players to set self-imposed restrictions on the amount of time they spend online, how much they can wager during a particular day, week or month and also give them the option to completely ban themselves from the casino for life.

A number of countries have imposed rules that have caused the self-exclusive database to be made common for all legalized casinos; this means if you use a self-imposed ban at one casino it will be made applicable to all licensed casinos, thereby providing great protection to the player who wants to protect themselves from gambling harm.

Methods You Can Use To Overcome Addiction

While there are programs and organizations out there to help individuals dealing with different forms of addiction and compulsive behavior, there are millions of individuals who would not want their addictions to be disclosed.

If you are one of these individuals, then you can try some of the below methods to see if you can overcome it by yourself; if not — it is better to get help sooner rather than later.

Change Your Environment: Sometimes an addiction is dependent on a particular set of circumstances. A drug addict might be used to hanging out with a particular set of friends or shooting up in a certain location. Switch cities or even countries if you have the resources but get out of that environment and take a stab at life again.

Try Meditation: If you don’t want religious help but prefer to rely on your own abilities, try meditation and see if the calming effect is enough to help you overcome your addictions.

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