It’s easy to develop a gambling addiction because of the prospect of winning real money. Don’t get the title twisted, though. Gambling has been and likely will continue to be a massive part of my life.
But the last thing I would want is to encourage any of you to develop problematic behaviors because of it. I believe it is of utmost importance that you take a hard look at your gambling habits and make corrections as needed.
Taking this step at least once a year can save you a ton of cash and even more frustration.
When going through your checklist, look out for these nine warning signs that you should stop gambling. You don’t need to stop forever, but you should address the issue before moving forward.
1 – You’re Not Equipped to Win
Every game in the casino is meant to make you lose money to the casino. That’s the basic premise of the casino’s business model.
However, you can take steps as a player to put yourself in a better position to win. This often comes down to becoming the most skilled player possible or understanding the most basic casino strategies.
This list will vary slightly depending on preferences and strategies, but some general rules apply to everyone.
Keno, bingo, slot machines, and most table games remain unbeatable. Many games will drain your bankroll faster than others by combining fast-paced action with a high house advantage.
Instead, you should focus on poker, baccarat, video poker, and blackjack. These games all have a minuscule house edge or can actually be beaten by the player.
Focus on the games that give you a chance to win long-term before you play another casino game.
2 – You Aren’t Taking Full Advantage of What the Casino Offers
Casino comps are an afterthought for a lot of casino gamblers. They never take the time to sign up for the player’s club card and hence never get to enjoy their rewards.
Casinos will hand out comps based on how much you’re gambling in the casino. The casino tracks your average bet amount and the time you spend gambling in the casino to calculate your freebies.
You need to get into the simple mindset that every casino comp you earn is a dollar you’re getting back from the casino. These comps can quickly add up and will serve to negate some of the money you’re losing on the casino floor.
When you play the games with a low house edge, you’re going to be keeping it tight to even with the casino, assuming you’re using sound bankroll management skills. So, saving $20 on a meal will go a long way to cutting down on your actual losses.
You shouldn’t bet one more penny in a casino until you’ve registered a rewards account with the casino.
3 – You Spend More Money Than Intended
If you are spending more money than intended when gambling, you need to stop immediately. This type of reckless behavior could be a real sign of problem gambling.
There are two primary ways this type of gambling can interfere with your wallet. If you’re gambling with money expressly intended for other purposes, you should give yourself a nice long break and ensure that you don’t have a gambling addiction.
One of the most straightforward aspects of bankroll management comes down to set strict limits in the casino. You should first establish a strict bankroll for your gambling session and stick to it.
You should also have a hard limit on how much you’ll lose, as well as a win limit to walk away at. Place emphasis on bankroll management fundamentals, and you’ll have a much more enjoyable gambling experience.
4 – You Aren’t Dedicating Time to Becoming a Better Gambler
If you’re not putting any effort into becoming a better gambler, you’re wasting your time and money. Yes, most gamblers lose, and the point of casino gambling remains entertainment.
Still, you are losing the money you don’t need to be by not improving your skillset. Some forms of gambling can be much easier to spot areas of improvement than others.
For example, a poker player will be able to study hand progressions and starting hand probabilities to become a better player. Sports bettors can expand their data sets and computer models to tighten up their handicapping skills to start enjoying more wins.
Yet, you could be surprised to learn that slots players can also be better at what they do. By implementing a solid bankroll management system and slowing down the pace at which they spin the reels, players can dramatically impact their overall results for the better.
Before you make your next casino trip, budget time to work on becoming a better gambler.
5 – You Rely Too Much on Luck
You can see better profit margins on most casino games by utilizing the proper strategy. If you’re relying on pure luck to pull you through to winning casino sessions, you need to stop gambling.
Strategy can be used in blackjack to drop the house edge to only 0.5%. That’s as low as you can get without getting an advantage in your favor.
Gaining the advantage is entirely doable; by the way, you’ll just need to learn some advanced skills. Card counting immediately comes to mind when it comes to players getting an edge on the casino.
Luck won’t make you a profitable gambler. Stop relying on luck or quit gambling because you’re burning money.
6 – You’re Not Enjoying Yourself
When I’m in the casino or at the sportsbook, I regularly do status updates where I determine one critical component of gambling. That’s whether or not I am enjoying myself.
The moment you stop having fun, it’s time to call it quits. There’s no point giving money away with nothing being given in return.
If you’re anything like me, the shortest path to having fun is winning. So, you should work on developing skills that will lead you to more incredible wins.
During your casino sessions, ask yourself whether or not you’re having any fun. Anytime you’re not having fun in the casino, you should stop gambling and walk away.
Gain some clarity and a fresh outlook on your gambling objectives before returning to the games.
7 – You’re Constantly on the Prowl for Action
If you are constantly looking for more action, you should stop gambling. This can be especially true for sports bettors.
Most sharp bettors are placing one bet per week. If they lose, they wait until the following week and try again.
If you’re already losing most of your bets, how could bet more lead to anything but more significant losses? Check out our post on 6 signs of a losing sports gambler for more information on this topic!
When you’re constantly searching for the following guaranteed lock, you never place the attention needed to win any specific bet. Over the long term, this will have devastating consequences.
Stop looking for action anywhere you can get it. Slow your gambling habits before you start losing control of the wheel and skid into gambling oblivion.
8 – The Games Are Stacked Against You
Look, casino games are carefully stacked against you. The house edge is there to guarantee the casino makes a profit, which can’t happen unless you lose.
If you’re unwilling to accept that or change it and learn to beat the casino, you should stop gambling. Still, if you’re having fun playing the games and aren’t putting a financial burden on yourself, there’s not a huge problem yet.
You merely won’t be getting the most from your gambling experiences. Use advantage gambling techniques to even the playing field, and you’ll be on your way to maximizing your casino gambling experience.
9 – You Have an Addiction
Many of these have been to grab your attention. I hope that I could shock you into seeing the error of your ways and become a better gambler.
However, gambling addiction is no laughing matter. If you feel that you may have a gambling addiction, it’s vital that you face the problem head-on and get help for your gambling addiction.
There’s no need to feel shameful over your addiction; it’s best to find a support group and enjoy your life without the risk of gambling.
Gambling has brought a ton of fulfillment, and I want it to do the same for you. Just the same, it’s better to walk away too soon than follow your poor gambling habits to the poor house.
Watch out for the nine warning signs that you should stop gambling. Whenever they arise, stop and carefully assess your habits and goals.