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Hard to make choices cost of living

Phil10

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So you try your wife's card and you try your mum's card? That means addiction to gambling. Only reason you are stopping is because your wife's card is blocked on the sites. With your mum's card it wouldn't let you use it. If it had of you would have still gambled. Lost a lot more money. It is something you need help for. Because the first chance you get to gamble again, you will take it. So get help for the gambling.

Phil, I once had a friend who was addicted to break fluid. But he reckoned he stop any time he wanted to. :p
I went on some gambling forums and got help before. And yes if I could play I would gamble. I think that’s the idea of these sites to block. If you go full UK block it’s for people with serious issues I think people only do that as a last resort. I think it’s a good step. I admit I’ve been outside and wanted to play fruit machines but never. I use to play bingo but never played in 15 years almost as I worked there and never wanted to go back. I can’t guarantee I won’t gamble again but I can’t use my wife’s card, I can’t ask, I can’t look..I have never been able to place a real money bet on my card since May as I fully excluded. At one point I wanted to see how I felt gambling everywhere I was doing it at work, at family houses everywhere. Mostly one game I was addicted to. I can’t be sure I won’t gamble but my card or wife’s card definitely won’t work. I tried to sign up and it blocks me right away..awful addiction I just have to hope the blocking keeps me at bay with it
 

Phil10

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I couldn't afford to go on holiday. Wouldn't have the money to meet bills and holiday. A holiday is something we give ourselves. In a few years time things will calm down again. Prices will steady out. Maybe then holidays will become affordable once more. And both can be done together. Pay the bills and have a holiday. Have to live within your means. I would say to eat as you always have done. Knock the holidays on the head. Need to stay healthy. Food keeps us that way. All about balancing the books out. Cutting out what we don't need.
Often I can’t decide if I should spend or save. Maybe in a cost of living crisis I should save more. I know the gambling has made me anxious that’s why I had to stop. My next few holidays are cheaper ones as I believe I over stretched myself this year I had a mortgage rise and electricity but that bill has since come down.
 

Cuchculan

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If you were to save, what would spend it on? If that was me, I would be thinking ' is there anything we really need doing in the house '. Be that carpet or furniture or new windows. In other words if you were to have your mind set on something new, it might give you reason not to gamble and save your money up. It is when you imagine you don't need to save for anything that you throw the money away on silly things. Gambling is out there all around us. It comes in big forms and small forms. People who do the lottery and buy scratch cards are gambling. They will tell you it is only twice a week. But how much have they spent on that since the lottery began? Versus how much they have won? A lot of people throw a lot of money away thinking the next time might be their time. The big win. That is what they are always telling themselves. Have been for many years now. None of them are rich. All probably run out of money by the end of the month. Some would rather the quick gamble than a piece of food. Throw that last bit of money away with the hope they will win big. Dreamers. You spend more than you win. By about a thousand to one. That would be like you handing me a thousand pound and me handing you one pound. Look at it that way. The balance is unfair. But you are willing to gamble on those odds. So we shall see how long you go without gambling.
 

Phil10

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If you were to save, what would spend it on? If that was me, I would be thinking ' is there anything we really need doing in the house '. Be that carpet or furniture or new windows. In other words if you were to have your mind set on something new, it might give you reason not to gamble and save your money up. It is when you imagine you don't need to save for anything that you throw the money away on silly things. Gambling is out there all around us. It comes in big forms and small forms. People who do the lottery and buy scratch cards are gambling. They will tell you it is only twice a week. But how much have they spent on that since the lottery began? Versus how much they have won? A lot of people throw a lot of money away thinking the next time might be their time. The big win. That is what they are always telling themselves. Have been for many years now. None of them are rich. All probably run out of money by the end of the month. Some would rather the quick gamble than a piece of food. Throw that last bit of money away with the hope they will win big. Dreamers. You spend more than you win. By about a thousand to one. That would be like you handing me a thousand pound and me handing you one pound. Look at it that way. The balance is unfair. But you are willing to gamble on those odds. So we shall see how long you go without gambling.
Yes I’ve been doing house jobs I redecorated in March but there’s always more jobs to do. I have a big list. Yes it definitely helps. Often I save in an ocd form to stare at money on a digital app or feel financially secure. Saved lots during covid as I couldn’t do holidays or anything. Since then I saved money spent it and resaved. Basically kept my covid money savings and since lockdown I did everything I did previously holidays and gigs. That means I can’t save. Before covid I saved a tiny amount nothing major. Maybe it’s a good thing as it keeps me busy during the year always a holiday or something to look forward to. I have been greedy and wanted to save push for bigger house extensions ect. I feel I need to spend on smaller stuff. I’ve been trying to set targets like going for a meal or cinema with my wife. Doesn’t cost much compared to big things. I’m awful for spending large sums like I say means I tend not to save. But at the same time if I keep on saving and saving and going without that’s no fun. I sit and feel skint stay in and that’s where my gambling urges have come. Perhaps I need to accept what I have saved will do and try and keep busy. I work part time so I really can’t save and do stuff realistically in my head I feel I can’t but it’s not possible.
 

Cuchculan

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And if you were to pick an item from a site and set that as the goal of what you want to buy. Now for this to be of any use to what we are trying to do here, the item must be something needed. Meaning needed in the house. Thus it would have a purpose. Would be used a lot. Not something you will just buy for the sake of buying anything. I have saved in the past for a record player. Stereo system really. Tape decks. Record player. Cd player. It cost more than I would ever have on any normal planet. But that was my target. I love music. It gets used most days of the week. Am using it as I write this post. Not something I bought just for the sake of buying anything. To me there is a difference. That was my target when saving. Didn't come cheap either. Months and months of saving. But knowing I still had bills to pay whilst saving. Only so much I could put away some weeks. I wasn't wasting money. That is key to this. You will spend what you save. Just not on junk you don't really need.
 

Phil10

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I am still in a pickle. It’s new phone time and I cancelled an order twice reordered elsewhere. I had a voucher but felt desperate and wouldn’t wait and keep wanting to them cancel that. It always feels these “costly” jobs become a drama how can I better handle this?
 

Cuchculan

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Case of not overthinking things. You want a new phone, then get a new phone. I know it can be harder for some people. I would look at various places. See if the price is any different. Most times it is not. But you had a voucher. So that would be money off. Make one cheaper than if bought elsewhere. More a case of saying ' this is the one for me '. Sticking with that. Once you have made your mind up and viewed what you want, stay with that choice. Is only when you begin to cancel orders that the problems begin. You second guess the order. Did you do the right thing. Those sorts of thoughts. Then you cancel. Would it be any easier if you had the cash in your hand and walked into a store and just bought it?
 

Phil10

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Case of not overthinking things. You want a new phone, then get a new phone. I know it can be harder for some people. I would look at various places. See if the price is any different. Most times it is not. But you had a voucher. So that would be money off. Make one cheaper than if bought elsewhere. More a case of saying ' this is the one for me '. Sticking with that. Once you have made your mind up and viewed what you want, stay with that choice. Is only when you begin to cancel orders that the problems begin. You second guess the order. Did you do the right thing. Those sorts of thoughts. Then you cancel. Would it be any easier if you had the cash in your hand and walked into a store and just bought it?
Yep I agree makes sense. Sadly I over top on iPhone season. I ordered another one and spent my voucher on some watches. Result is lots of cancelling refunds going back phone cases going back to Amazon 2/3 times. I mostly feel guilty about money and try and sell stuff to fund it now I can’t gamble. All boils down to money I have savings but I’m scared to spend much of them. Causes a lot of stress buying something that expensive right now. I know I need to be better making choices as refunds has become a bit of an obsession.
 

Cuchculan

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Logic of this, you are afraid to spend money on such things, but you were not afraid to spend money when you gambled? Is that because you thought you might win even more money? What do you think will happen if you buy something expensive? Is it to do with the cost? Or is there something else behind it?
 

Phil10

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Logic of this, you are afraid to spend money on such things, but you were not afraid to spend money when you gambled? Is that because you thought you might win even more money? What do you think will happen if you buy something expensive? Is it to do with the cost? Or is there something else behind it?
When I gambled I was happy to lose £120. Always that sum never over. Spending £120 on anything else makes me feel awful. I did think I would win but I stopped winning. I am a bit obsessed banking apps staring at balance and scared to spend it. Anything I spend I try and rush to pay back to my savings. Makes me feel financially secure never worked a days overtime really since I saved money during covid. So yeah I’m a but obsessed about money this has meant I have cancelled phones smart watches around 10 times recently. Can’t help myself? My summer holiday I cancelled hotel to try get cheaper rates paying upfront tried to cut the number of days I went on holiday. I have a lot of free time so I’m always chopping and changing plans. Drives my wife mad can’t help it. In the end I make a choice but it causes me alot of anxiety working out a “payment plan” to pay my savings back. Or I say do I want to spend on that? No I spend on something else. Bit of an obsession.
 

Cuchculan

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It is a problem. One you could get help for. That might be money better spent. Trying to fix the problem. Rather than it getting much worse. I think with gambling, you place a bet and it is gone. No way to get it back. You simply lost the bet. With buying something the money can be refunded and the item returned. If there was no refunds allowed, you might find yourself buying things, just to buy things. Case of what do you really need? Versus what are you buying just for the sake of buying something? I would spend the money on getting help for the problem. Once you do that you might learn how to manage things a whole lot better.
 

Phil10

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It is a problem. One you could get help for. That might be money better spent. Trying to fix the problem. Rather than it getting much worse. I think with gambling, you place a bet and it is gone. No way to get it back. You simply lost the bet. With buying something the money can be refunded and the item returned. If there was no refunds allowed, you might find yourself buying things, just to buy things. Case of what do you really need? Versus what are you buying just for the sake of buying something? I would spend the money on getting help for the problem. Once you do that you might learn how to manage things a whole lot better.
Do you think the anxiety and ocd can be so overwhelming it can cause this gambling or refund anxiety? I can’t gamble as my wife blocked her details too so I honestly think I’ve done all I can I don’t visit any casinos in person was always online. This cancelling things has maybe been going on a year getting worse. Simply can’t make a choice without feeling guilty about money. I’m not sure how common an issue it is. Is it some form of ocd about cash?
 

Cuchculan

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And you mentioned your own main problem. Too much time on your hands. You get bored. What do we do when we get bored? You order things. Cancel things. Order something else. Cancel something else. You need to fill your time with other things. Find new things to do. So you won't sit there and order things. These are things you got so used to doing. What happens an addict when he stops his addiction? He misses it big time. Anxiety can kick in. Can be making you feel as you do.
 

Phil10

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And you mentioned your own main problem. Too much time on your hands. You get bored. What do we do when we get bored? You order things. Cancel things. Order something else. Cancel something else. You need to fill your time with other things. Find new things to do. So you won't sit there and order things. These are things you got so used to doing. What happens an addict when he stops his addiction? He misses it big time. Anxiety can kick in. Can be making you feel as you do.
Basically yes I worked 4 days until 2021 then I cut to 3 days. Gave me 4 days off together. For a year I was feeding a gambling addiction. I couldn’t wait to Monday to gamble and win cash. I considered another job but couldn’t be bothered. Now as you know I blocked most gambling sites only had 3 relapses lasting an under a week usually a day. So yeah all week I message people to do house jobs garden work cancel it, cancel item. Work 20 odd hours so money is tight. If I spent say £100 that’s 1/3rd of my disposable income so I feel guilty. Do I get bored yes? I have started going walks and I had been buying movies to keep busy. That has worked. I get 1 day to go out with my wife and other day my mum so that’s actually 6 days some weeks I’m busy. But some weeks I can spend 3/4 days myself it varies. I tried to buy houses a few weeks ago and move. I realised I would then have zero savings left. Like I have no financial motivation to work extra I have a large sum of savings? I should be glad but yeah it has meant I have little motivation. I really don’t know how i can spend my free time?
 

Cuchculan

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A hobby would be the obvious answer. I do jigsaws. Not saying you would like that. But it is something to do. That is what you need. Something to do. Easy to get bored. Easy to say ' I have to do something '. Then you go and think about buying a house. Something you don't really need. Just try and work out, even one thing, you always wanted to try your hand at. Just one. Then give it a go. Might become something you are good at. Then you might have something worth spending money on.
 

Phil10

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So over Christmas I applied for 3 temporary jobs and yesterday I viewed a 3 bed house up front my current 2 beds. That’s the first I viewed properly in 5 years anyway I never got the jobs or I decided the house wasn’t right location. I feel my house is small particularly kitchen and can’t satisfy myself. It would have over stretched my budget and maybe been quite stressful moving but I believed it was a good idea. I have savings so i feel if I’m going to spend them maybe a house is good value. Anyway my reason for posting is every week I have drama I have 4 days off per week. I was asked to do overtime but did a whole load of Facebook posts this week as my partner was off and I never wanted the overtime. Maybe moving is a good idea but maybe I am too ambitious. Obviously jobs new houses are all stressful. I do spend my free time watching Netflix and movies which is actually great for my anxiety levels as it’s relaxing but the Free time gives me big ideas?
 

Cuchculan

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No real difference than before. You look at things. Maybe order things. Cancel the orders. End up spending no money at all. Maybe the whole idea of just placing the order is something you like to do. Were deep down you know you will cancel it. So you can make orders over and over again and just keep on cancelling them. Come the end of the day you have linked anxiety to certain things. Houses and work and other similar things. Thus you might make an order. Might look at house. The anxiety happens until you cancel things. But you will keep on doing it. Something would have to change in order for it to stop. Meaning if you treat the problem. Something I have never once heard you talk about. All that money? Why not see a good therapist. Might be the greatest thing you ever spent money on.
 

Phil10

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A therapist may be an idea. So money is an issue it’s ocd themes. Have to keep x number of savings. I was going to fix a wardrobe my ice said guy would use bleach to clean the tracks so I cancelled him. I wanted some new stones but couldn’t settle on a colour so no work got done. I have cancelled this job maybe ten times now. I seem to brain storm ideas and debate spending the money. Luckily some jobs do get one i cut a tree down in my garden last year. A whole year later after cancelling. My wife isn’t good at making choices either. She liked house I looked at but couldn’t settle on travelling to railway station. So yes I am getting bored of these themes I cancel holidays home improvements most ocd triggers around germs or money.
 

Phil10

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I found whole thing stressful. Ideal house was gone but went to look at another looked great big kitchen but can’t sit sofa no wardrobes and had estate agents calling me past one week. Seems whole move thing is alot of hassle but so is home improvements. Having anxiety makes it worse.
 

PieFan

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I found whole thing stressful. Ideal house was gone but went to look at another looked great big kitchen but can’t sit sofa no wardrobes and had estate agents calling me past one week. Seems whole move thing is alot of hassle but so is home improvements. Having anxiety makes it worse.
I wanted to buy a home in 5 years, so I spent time learning about how to budget, which was interesting, and I'm still email friends with a lady who runs a budgeting website. What I found was important was to fill in the time which used to cost money, with new activities which cost less or cost nothing, then I could complete my major project and pay off the mortgage. After a hurricane I found the projects now required and finding competent and honest workpeople was not for me, it was making me miserable, so I sold up and went back to renting. Different things work at different times I'm finding.

4 days off a week is a lot of time to fill productively but spending it all watching Netflix or movies would make me more not less anxious, however going to work all day then watching a movie, and maybe then reading the book, or looking at movies or books related to the actors/genre/writer etc I'd get quite engaged with that. Sometimes I've joined library or church groups to learn about things or share interests. Since permanence seems to be a problem for you and blocks your flow of decision-making, doing a variety of short-term and new things regularly might help, we all need a fix of adrenalin and dopamine periodically and you already found the way to find it isn't gambling, and travels now bring their own anxieties (for lots of people) Projects- some of them are necessarily mundane, like the cleaning or fixing stuff, but some of them can be stretching, meeting new people or trying activities outside your basic comfort zone?

My dad loved gardening, and he created an amazing garden over time which brought a lot of knowledge and connection to nature. I don't have his level of interest but I'm nearly always growing something or experimenting with taking cuttings or identifying trees or plants, one time I got a mushroom growing kit, and there's a Bonsai kit I'm going to start on one day soon. What I'm saying is you can do things at the level which works for you. And if you enjoy jumping from one idea to another then find ways to make that personality trait work to make you happy.

Having some savings is a goal for many people, it's a practical way to live. Sure, mental health blurs boundaries, and a therapist could help you to set the right levels for you.

But contentment and happiness are things we cultivate by choosing daily activities and relationships which refresh, uplift and engage our senses.

Something would have to change in order for it to stop. Meaning if you treat the problem.
You do lots of different things to occupy and engage you @Cuchculan. I think, though I'm not OCD, I do have a 'butterfly' mind, one doctor said I have mild ADHD, but I could not tolerate the meds. So now I've made it less of a life problem and I use it to fulfill me- always got ideas and projects on the go, some of them soon peter out, others have become passions.

I use the library service, several churches and even my work is an eclectic mix of activities which keeps me feeling alive. If something makes anxiety worse or becomes unmanageable it's then easy to reduce or stop that and increase the stuff which works better for me. It's been a long time since I've been bored but if I was I can just take a new class, read a new book or author, or learn to cook something...some of these things have added to my work and practical life too, and brought me new friends and acquaintances.

What are things you would like to try?
 
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