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Let’s talk gambling

For advice on gambling issues that many people experience – Let’s talk gambling.

Our blog features articles from experts and real experiences from people who have overcome gambling harm.

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A new series of Let’s Talk Gambling vodcasts has been created to share practical steps and expert advice on how to support yourself or your loved ones through gambling harm.


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Overcome gambling impulses with self-awareness

Cultivating self-awareness helps us notice any urges and impulses to gamble, and can help us make informed decisions as to how to best manage them.

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Rebuilding trust after gambling

Explore how to navigate the impact of harmful gambling on relationships, and how to rebuild through open communication, honesty and consistent behaviour.

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How boredom triggers gambling and what you can do about it

Do you find yourself gambling when you’re bored? In this article, we explore the relationship between boredom and gambling, and provide you with some practical tips about how to break that cycle and find alternatives.

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What to do when your friends are gambling

Changing your relationship with gambling can be hard when your friends also gamble. This article provides some tips as to how to handle social situations and friendships, without compromising on your own values and boundaries regarding gambling.

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How stress can trigger a gambling relapse

Urges to gamble can be strong, especially when we are feeling stressed. It is very important that when we decide we no longer want to gamble, or want to reduce our gambling, that we also think about how we can manage general day-to-day stress.

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Manage gambling urges using this simple trick

Do you ever find yourself overwhelmed by the urge to gamble? In those intense moments, it's essential to have a practical tool to help you stay on track and manage that distress.

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What is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, and how can it help you with your gambling?

In this article, we delve into explaining what Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is and how it can assist you in dealing with your gambling struggles.

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Intrusive gambling thoughts and how to manage them

If you’re experiencing intrusive thoughts about gambling, here are some strategies to help you manage these thoughts more effectively.

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Five reasons to try quitting gambling again

What happens if you find it hard to stick with quitting, and go back to gambling? This article details five reasons why you should try again.

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How to manage pay day gambling urges

When struggling with gambling, payday can be difficult. Here are a few strategies that might help to make payday easier to manage.

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5 steps to staying gamble-free

The journey of gambling recovery is filled with ups and downs, so it's important to find strategies to help you stay committed to your recovery.

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Behaviour change model - Stages: Pre-contemplation, contemplation, preparedness, action, maintenance

The 5 stages of behaviour change

The 5-stage model of behaviour change can be applied when trying to change all sorts of behaviours, including changing one’s relationship with gambling.

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Gambling among women: A hidden issue

Women who have online gambling accounts tend to play more often, for longer, in isolation, and spend more money in total than men.

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The ‘gambling getaway’: An illusion of escape

Gambling can be a way to escape from day-to-day stressors. But, the problems are often still there when we return from our 'getaway’.

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How to regulate your emotions in 4 easy steps

Emotions drive behaviour, and form an essential part of our lives. In the context of gambling, acting on some of these emotions can be harmful, and cause relapses.

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Breaking the link between depression and gambling

Research has shown for some time that depression and gambling addiction are linked and depression is amongst several factors that can lead to gambling addiction.

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Reacting to the recent: mental biases in gambling

It's very common for people to make thinking errors when gambling, and there are many different types of thinking errors that impact decision-making in gambling.

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How to deal with guilt and shame from gambling

When trying to stop or reduce gambling, it is important to be aware of any thoughts that may lead to feelings of shame, which can lead to problems for mental health.

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What triggers the urge to gamble?

Do you find that some days are harder to get through compared to others? That some days the urge to gamble might be stronger than others?

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How to support a family member who is struggling with gambling

If you have a family member experiencing difficulties with gambling, you are in a unique position to provide assistance, support and help start recovery.

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7 ways gambling can harm you — and what to do about it

Gambling can result in a lot of harm, in fact, there are seven distinct ways in which people can experience gambling-related harm to varying degrees.

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Chasing losses: The goal post that keeps moving

In gambling the more you lose, the more desperate you feel to gain the money back, and the more bets you find yourself placing to chase losses.

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Spotlight on self-exclusion

Self-exclusion is a voluntary process where a person bans themselves from entering specific gambling venues, or from accessing online providers.

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Values: What are they, and why do they matter?

Values are our “deepest desires” that guide our way of life. Values can be thought of as an inner compass, that might guide us in a particular direction in life.

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Embracing mindfulness

The goal of mindfulness is to build flexibility to acknowledge thoughts, feelings, and behaviours as they come up, and to be able to let them pass without judgement.

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Seeing what we want to see – thinking errors in gambling

Confirmation bias is a thinking error that causes humans to unknowingly favour information that supports the beliefs they already hold.

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Communication is key – how to have the tough conversations

Research shows that having social support significantly increases the ability to manage or abstain from gambling, and helps to maintain hard-earned gains.

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What to expect when seeing a counsellor

The process of going to see a gambling counsellor can be quite daunting, so let’s talk about what therapy involves and how it can help you.

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Gambling and alcohol - A risky combination

Mixing alcohol and gambling can actually be a risky combination. Combining alcohol and gambling results in spending more money gambling than they intended to.

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The science of addiction

Understanding the science of addiction helps someone with gambling addiction to make sense of the 'why' and what steps they could take to help themselves.

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The brain’s cue and reward system

The brain’s cue and reward system

University of Melbourne neuroscientist Dr Jared Cooney Horvath talked to us about what happens in our brain when addiction occurs, and how to overcome it.

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Weighing up the risk - When your loved ones stop supporting you

It is essential to consider how your gambling could be affecting your family as ignoring these consequences can lead to greater problems within your relationships.

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Sports betting – can we have one without the other?

Learn the tips on how you can experience the joys of your favourite sports whilst being mindful of gambling. For support on any gambling issue call 1800 858 858.

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Strong Brother, Strong Sister, strong futures

Strong Brother, Strong Sister is a First Nations owned, operated service for First Nations young people. SBSS focuses on living physically and mentally healthy lives.

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​​“Due for a win”: Thinking errors in gambling

There are lots of different types of thinking errors that people make when gambling. One particularly common one is known as ‘The Gambler’s Fallacy’.

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Urge surfing – Tips on how to manage the urge to gamble

Often, despite all the hard work we’ve put in, we continue to get urges to gamble. The good news is, these urges can be tolerated without having to act on them!

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You’ve had a bust - now what?

Gambling lapse / relapse is very common and treating yourself with compassion is actually much more useful, than being excessively hard on yourself.

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Getting through the festive season

The holidays can bring about mixed emotions for many people including stress, boredom and loneliness. Here are some suggestions for how to manage gambling urges.

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Gambling and the malleable brain

The brain changed by gambling has the capacity to change further, and through learning and new experience, the urge to gamble can lessen and even disappear.

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Gambling dreams

Gambling dreams or “relapse dreams” are very common, especially in the early stages of trying to change your relationship with gambling.

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Do-it-yourself tools to fight the gambling urge

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Re-making meaning: social connection after gambling harm

Gabriele Byrne drew on her lived experience of playing the pokies to establish social groups supporting those seeking help to quit.

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Gambling blocks on credit and debit cards

A gambling block on a credit or debit card means the account cannot be used to pay for gambling products or activities. It can be activated through banking apps.

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Prisoners of shame no more

Profound shame about their gambling and its impact on their family’s reputation is stopping many gamblers in the Australian-Vietnamese community from seeking help.

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Why online gambling can be risky

Online gambling is riskier because in addition to financial losses, you may experience negative effects on your mood, stress, relationships and wellbeing.

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An insight into Gambling Minds

Consultant psychiatrist Dr Rebecca Hope considers the particular vulnerability of people struggling with gambling harm, mental illness and addiction during COVID-19-related restrictions.

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The long tail of emergency response

Mike Kirkness from Latrobe Community Health Service was one of the financial counsellors on the frontline helping bush-fire affected people in 2019-20.

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Telehealth in the spotlight

A survey of Gambler’s Help counsellors captures the challenges and successes of the rapid move to telehealth counselling during the early days of COVID-19.

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Connecting with customers is Number One

In any gambling venue, venue staffs must be observant and report anything of concern to a Responsible Gaming Officer who must be present in the gaming room.

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Managing urges

Learning to tolerate feeling uncomfortable during an urge is important to maintain change.

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Gambling counsellor, Jodi Clarke

Gambling counsellor Jodi Clarke talks about helping people with gambling problems and their families to work through the issues and recover.

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Self-care: combat stress and resist old habits

Self-care during periods of stress or boredom – when you may otherwise slip into old habits, like gambling – can help to reduce anxiety & improve general wellbeing.

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Bright minds, bright ideas: young Aboriginal people get the facts on gambling harm

Young Aboriginal People’s Awareness Program (YAPAP) aims to help young Aboriginals gain a balanced, realistic understanding of the risks associated with gambling.

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Supporting communities to know the risks

Research shows that while members of CALD communities are less likely to gamble, but those who do gamble are at higher risk of developing problems.

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Staying positive each day

One of the best and simplest ways to feel positive each day is to think about what you’re grateful for. Gratitude is strongly associated with greater happiness.

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Gambler’s Help financial counsellor, Chantelle McGuinness

Gambler’s Help financial counsellor Chantelle McGuinness talks about her rewarding job helping Aboriginal people work their way out of financial hardship caused by gambling.

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How to change a gambling habit

Changing a habit involves recognising the feelings that lead to a specific action, like gambling, and then retraining your brain to respond differently to it.

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Chinese New Year brings a fresh start

There are strong beliefs about luck in Chinese culture, which can be heightened by New Year festivities – the emphasis on getting together & playing games for money.

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Making changes: snapshots from a regional Gambler’s Help service

A day in the life of the Gambler’s Help team in Geelong is a day of compassion, advocacy and enthusiasm as they support local community members through gambling harm.

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Cultural nuance is key to preventing gambling harm

Gambling – Secret No More involved a series of gambling awareness information sessions highlighting the risks of gambling harm and culturally relevant help at hand.

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Complex treatment at the crossroads

The team at Alfred Mental Health and Gambling Harm Program offers short-term treatment and assessment of clients struggling with mental health and gambling.

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Coming up for air through counselling partnership

A financial and a therapeutic counsellor work in tandem with clients to help them manage their stress while freeing them from the financial woes.

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On stigma and how we can tackle it

In encouraging help-seeking and individual actions and controls, gambling harm campaigns were found to reinforce personal responsibility.

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VCAL lessons for life

When Noah Grech’s VCAL studies reflected what personal experience had taught him, he became so motivated that he believes he’s identified his career direction.

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Lifting the lid on gaming

The popularity of gambling-like products in computer games played by many Australian children comes under the spotlight in new videos released.

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Gambler’s Help financial counsellor, Pam Mutton

Gambler’s Help financial counsellor Pam Mutton gets immense satisfaction from helping people with gambling problems pay back their debts and stay debt-free.

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Community educator, David Clark

David from Incolink spoke to Inside gambling about the challenges young apprentices face and the rewards of helping them steer clear of gambling problems.

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Shelter from the storm

By staying open late and offering interesting activities in a welcoming environment, a group of libraries in Melbourne’s north is seeking to reduce gambling harm.

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Helping young gamblers help themselves

With 95% of building and construction workers being male, industry body Incolink is in a prime position to help young apprentices understand gambling risks.

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When substance misuse and gambling problems converge

Drug and alcohol treatment services organisation Odyssey House has developed training and resources for workers to use when their clients also have gambling issues.

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‘What difference is another $20,000?’ Recognising financial harm

Gambler’s Help clients and counsellors say recognising early signs of problem gambling can prevent bigger problems developing.

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Five minutes with Arabic counsellor, Hoda Nahal

Hoda Nahal, a senior counsellor with Arabic Welfare, helps people from Arabic-speaking backgrounds who are experiencing harm from gambling.

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Counselling - What's Involved?

Considering getting help for your gambling but not sure what's involved? Gambler's Help counsellor Jake dispels some common fears and explains what to expect in counselling.

There is hope for recovery for people who gamble

In this video, therapeutic counsellor, Cherry Louey dispels some common fears and explains what really happens when you receive counselling through Gambler’s Help.