The other day a friend was sharing with me a situation she found herself in, that led to a lot of trouble for her.
A friend of her’s(let’s call him, friend A) claimed to need some cash urgently and offered her a deal that was to “sweet” to refuse. For any amount she lends, she would get it back with a 20% lending interest. This was a very good idea she thought. The problem was, she didn’t have any cash to lend.
Not wanting to let this “deal” go, she contacts another friend(friend B), asking for a loan which she would return, this time without interest. Friend B agrees to this. She then proceeds to give friend A the cash, expecting a payback plus interest.
Like I initially said this could end in two ways, in a positive way, where she gets the cash she borrowed plus her expected interest, or in a negative way, in which she loses both the money she borrowed, her expected interest, and still has to pay friend B.
Unfortunately, It went the second way, friend A played smart. Friend A refused to pay back, leaving my friend to source for funds to pay Friend B.
This situation happens to a lot of us, the “get rich quick” temptation. It comes in different ways, i:e numerous doubling money ideas, get rich quick schemes, interest on our investments beyond what is considered the normal etc.
It always seems like a good idea to be honest, so good that we even try to rationalize it with, “I have so many bills to pay” “this extra interest would go into something needed”. Some attempt to stroke their morality by claiming, “I can give someone in need “.
It is important to point out that I’m not here to judge anyone. I also have succumbed to similar temptations.
One thing I have come to learn from my experience, well let’s say the two things I have learnt are;
1) It is an addictive never-ending vicious cycle. A cycle that won’t stop till the individual loses him/herself. By this, I mean financially, emotionally, their relationships with others etc.
It always looks good and simple at first, especially after you get your first win/profit, your first ” high”. You believe you can continue to win more, this then leads you to increase your stakes, expecting more wins and you may get more wins. Or you don’t. Then you rationalise it further, “it happens to the best players as well”.
You continue again and again and again.
Till you look back months, maybe even years later, a shadow of who you are and so far from where you started.
2)The lack of peace experienced. According to the Royal College of Psychiatrists, problem gamblers are more likely than others to suffer from low self-esteem, develop stress-related disorders, become anxious, have poor sleep and appetite, to develop a substance misuse problem and to suffer from depression.
This means, with the wins comes sleep deprivation and a host of other mental health issues. One begins to wonder if the wins are that important. I understand by this time, the addictive behaviour has been formed and many can’t help what they do anymore.
If you are facing a similar situation for the first time, my humble advice, Do not start it. However, if you have experienced your first win, as much as possible, Don’t continue. The road ahead isn’t paved with wins or lots of money. It is not.
If you are reading this and you are finding it difficult to stop, please admit you have a problem that is now beyond your control.
The first step to solving a problem is admitting there is one.
After this first step, please seek help. It can be daunting telling your story to another person, but this is the pathway to freedom, which you truly seek. The help can be the help from God and/or the help of a certified therapist.
Both options aren’t mutually exclusive, I believe that one needs a higher power for strength in the tough times and accountability. Then seek a therapist, who would walk you through the issues and offer practical steps to take in this recovery journey.
Love and Light always.
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