Famous athletes have become famous due to one very important characteristic – they want to win. Each and every win brings success and more fame to their name, and it’s not long before famous athletes begin to entertain themselves in risky ways in their downtime. It is not a surprise that many famous athletes have experiences a fall from grace due to their risky, and sometimes even reckless, attitudes. There have been many famous cases of athletes who had fame, success, and thousands of fans, but have lost it all due to reckless behavior in their downtime. In addition, there are also athletes and sport stars who have been connected to substance abuse scandals – but the difference is that they have abused drugs give a better performance in the field, rather than conduct risky behavior during their leisure period.
Psychological makeup of successful athletes
While every successful athlete has a unique personality, just as any other person, they all share a common trait that drives them to succeed. Many psychologists and researchers consider that successful and famous athletes begin to consider themselves to be invincible, and that addiction and problematic behavior cannot touch them or have big consequences for them. This is usually termed as invincibility complex, and many athletes who have created big problems for themselves, for others and who have put their professional career in jeopardy, appear to show this with their risky behavior and reckless actions in their downtime. In other words, famous athletes believe that if something bad happened to a normal person as a result of risky behavior, it wouldn’t happen to them.
Most dangerous recreational activities
It goes without saying that some of the most dangerous activities famous athletes conduct is substance abuse, from various different substances like drugs and alcohol, to different addictions like problem gambling or other adrenaline-inducing, dangerous activities. As with any other person, these activities can have great consequences, not only for the athletes themselves, but for other people as well. Drunk driving leads to accidents, problem gambling can lead to financial ruin and addiction can ruin a person’s life in general, and athletes are not excluded. Many athletes are connected to driving under intoxication, and some of them have conducted actions like robberies that have put them in prison, ending both their career and changing their lives – for the worse – in one single stroke. Then, there are athletes who have gambled all their money away in land based and online casinos, due to the sinister nature of gambling addiction. Today, with online gambling at anyone’s fingertips, it can be easy for a problem gambler to hide his or her addiction, and considering the fact that famous athletes naturally use gambling as a recreational activity (they can afford it), online gambling can literally become the source of their financial and professional ruin. Follow the link for more info on problem gambling.
The consequences are bigger
Star athletes, as mentioned above, already believe themselves to be invincible, especially if they are known for risky activities and reckless behavior. It is easy to assume that even if an athlete battles addiction, the same drive that pushed them forward to success will help them battle addiction, if not with ease, then at least with determination. However, the reality is a bit different. Many athletes do not seek rehab or any other type of help before they reach rock bottom – and due to their celebrity status, them hitting rock bottom never fails to reach worldwide news through the media. There is no privacy for famous athletes, especially if they are connected to a scandal of that nature, and that adds more pressure on them to seek rehab. It might even be a good thing, because many athletes do not want to admit to anyone, not even to themselves, that they have a serious problem. In most cases, an extreme event is needed for them to be pushed towards the edge, and many athletes are forced to go into rehab, either to save what they can from their professional career, or to make sure that the consequences are minimal, compared to what they could have been.
Difficult to get back to normal
Sport stars who have had it all and lost it, have suffered all the media attention, for all the wrong reasons, and their fall for grace can have a great impact on them. In turn, that makes it even more difficult for them to get back to normal, especially after the rehabilitation period, when the normal they can get back to is not the same normal as it was before. While people whose career does not depend on them being physically fit, or lack of public scandals, can regain a semblance of what their lives were like before risky behavior and addiction ruined it all for them, sport stars can rarely do this. Not only do they have to deal with a lot of pressure, they also have more difficulties getting their lives back together after their fall from grace. It takes a greater amount of psychological strength and willpower, compared to other situations, especially if they know that they cannot go back to the life they had before. In many situations, successful athletes and sport stars take to risky behaviors and actions to relive the stress of their career – the drive to succeed, to win, and to be the best in their field can also tip them over the edge, so it’s not a surprise that a lot of them do end up having problems with gambling, substance abuse, alcoholism and addiction. Some even seek partying and other ways to entertain themselves, in order to be truly able to relax, in a certain way, after a difficult game, or to celebrate a great win. This implies that many famous athletes need to be more responsible about how they spend their downtime, and to be really careful about the consequences, so as to not fall into a vicious circle that can literally change their lives for good.