When you have a gambling addiction, or any other addiction, it is very easy to substitute addictions. In fact, surrogate addictions are very common and can happen when you least expect it.
When you have a gambling addiction and start to abstain, a lot of emotions start to surface. This is totally normal, however it can also be quite painful.
While actively engaging in addictive behavior, you tend to numb your feelings. If you have a gambling problem, your focus is most likely on your addiction and not on the troubling emotional feelings you may have.
If you are active in your gambling addiction, you are most likely concerned about the euphoria of gambling, your next gambling excursion, or how to obtain UFA funds to finance your gambling.
However, as he refrains from his problem, his true emotions and thoughts begin to surface. These buried thoughts and feelings are the feelings that you have been hiding through your addictive behavior.
If you don’t have a strong support system, like a counselor or therapist, or a good support group, it’s very easy to get overwhelmed by these buried emotions.
Once that old friend’s anxiety or depression begins to surface, it becomes very easy to replace addictions. Switching to food, drugs, alcohol, shopping, or sex can happen in an instant and can really stop the recovery process.
It is best to be aware of surrogate addictions when you stop gambling. Awareness can help you prevent a surrogate addiction on your way.
Here are some tips to help you before switching to a surrogate addiction:
o Talk to your counselor or support group about your feelings so you don’t get all bottled up.
o Read self-help literature as much as you can. It will help you to have a more positive mindset.
o Do not isolate yourself. Make sure to keep busy. Loneliness is fuel for addictive fire.
o Make sure you eat properly and exercise every day. It’s hard to be healthy and behave addictively at the same time!
o Get a good night’s sleep as this will allow you to think clearly and feel good both physically and mentally.