Doing Things Differently This Time
Like many, a compulsive gambler here with the ability to play well for periods of time until a brown out comes around and self-destruction sets in. A common story so I won't go into details. I will say I started in the poker world back in the early 90s, long before it was popular. I played every casino game there is, with roulette and baccarat being my weaknesses. Won a ton playing, lost a ton more. Major depression and attempted suicide. Then another few years of self-destruction before finally stopping.
Over the past two years, my gambling has slowed considerably, with the past year being mostly gambling free. The biggest change is that I don't think about gambling all the time, the way I used to. Instead I focused on my career and climbing the ladder. And, most importantly, on saving money.
I started investing my money a few months back. It ain't sexy, but I'm getting 4.3% on my money, with the bulk of my paycheck being automatically invested.
In this time, I've managed to save up $50,000. The main difference between now and then is that now I think about the future whereas before I was always in the now.
I've committed myself to my job for as long as the job will have me. I'm hoping I can stay there another 10 years. If so, I'm on pace to have $500,000 saved.
At that point, I will be 50 and will have sufficient money to semi-retire. I may bring Vegas & poker back into my life then. But under very different circumstances. To enjoy it, to break even and get some comps, for a small profit, or even a small loss. It won't be to strike it rich, and this will make all the difference.
There is value in hard work.
I am very fortunate to have been able to climb out of the gutter that I was in. I have no intention of going back.
Gambling will always be in my blood, but it will never again cause me to want to spill my own blood.