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Tools of Recovery


Gamblers Anonymous and recovery offers us tools to help us in our journey of recovery from active compulsive gambling. Click on the links available below for additional information on these topics.

MEETINGS – Attend meetings on a regular basis. Meetings are often referred to as “The Core of the Fellowship’s Existence”. There are different kinds of meetings suggested within our literature, and as our Unity Steps tell us, each group is free to design their own format provided it does not conflict with our Primary Purpose. If you are new to a community in Alberta, or are just visiting, check out our list of meetings throughout Alberta

RECOVERY and UNITY STEPS – Working the steps (all 24 of them) will enhance your understanding of the program and recovery.

SPONSORSHIP – the means and opportunity of the older, more experienced member to help another compulsive gambler gain an understanding of recovery. To guide that member through the 12 Steps of Recovery, and other paths that may need a guide.

LITERATURE – Read the GA Literature at, and in between meetings. The literature helps to inform us about steps, sponsorship, pressure relief, service, and so much more. GA has an abundant selection of literature dedicated to specific areas of recovery.

READING AND WRITING – Recovery does not happen through osmosis. Work does need to be done, which generally includes writing. Many sponsors will recommend writing out the First Step. Also, it is hard to imagine working a program of recovery without writing out a Fourth Step inventory. Some members feel all the steps need to be written out to better understand, experience, and live the program in our lives. Keeping a daily Journal, recording your thoughts, your feelings is another suggestion. Sometimes Journals are used for the Tenth Step, keeping a daily inventory.

PRESSURE RELIEF MEETING – The most under utilized tool in our fellowship. This tool is only available in the Gamblers Anonymous program. Individuals after 30 days need to do a financial inventory in addition to the 12 Steps of the program. Material and Knowledge is available to do a Pressure Relief.

PRAYER AND MEDITATION – This does not need to be hard. Some members are actually frightened by this part of the program. But one does not need to be. Remember that this is a spiritual, not a religious, program. How we contact, and stay in contact with our Higher Power, is as individual as we are. Prayer may be as we’ve envisioned it growing up, kneeling perhaps, hands clasped, and reciting prayers from memory. To others it may be as simple as a conversation with God as we drive to work, or go on a walk. How we contact our Higher Power is up to you. There is no guideline, and definitely no prescribed method by GA. One oldtimer has described prayer as talking to God, and meditation as listening to God. Find what works for you, and recovery will work more for you.

FELLOWSHIP – Make friends within the fellowship. Making healthy, non-gambling friends will only enhance your recovery. There is a saying in recovery that we will have to change our “playmates, playgrounds, and playthings”. This is not to say that we abandon all our old friends, merely compliment them with recovery friends.

TELEPHONE – Many groups offer telephone lists of their members for their members. The telephone has often been described as an “800 pound weight”, hard for members to pick up and call when they need to talk to someone. Many newcomers are afraid to call, maybe thinking that they will not know how to start a conversation, or how to ask for help. In between meetings, this may be one of the most useful tools a members can use.

SERVICE – Become involved within the fellowship. Sacrifice, in terms of service, generally gives something back meaningful. Thus, sacrificing a little of your time, giving back to the GA Fellowship, definitely will give your recovery meaning. Service helps us move away from self-centeredness towards some of the spiritual principles talked about in meetings..

AREA TRUSTEE – Each area elects a representative to the ISO Board of Trustees. For information on the roles and responsibilities of this elected position, or to contact your Area Trustee, please click on this link.

STARTING A NEW MEETING -This page explains the 5 simple steps to starting a GA Meeting in your community

GAM-ANON – Fellowships separate from, yet supportive of, significant others and children of compulsive gamblers. Inter-Fellowship support is commonplace, and suggested.

GAMBLERS ANONYMOUS – Check out Meetings around the world when you are traveling. Don’t stop going to meetings because you are not at home.

LIFE-LINE BULLETIN – Check out the Life-line bulletin.

The Recovery Program
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