My method to keep urges from becoming splurges is to give in to my urge but in a controlled manner. This makes my urge go away but doesn’t have the same negative consequences as a full-blown splurge.
Here is a recent example. I’ve been a little depressed lately and being depressed makes me want to gamble. This doesn’t make much sense because I lose money when I gamble which makes me even more depressed. Irrational as it is, the urge to gamble exists and has to be dealt with. My solution was to take $100 to the casino and gamble it away.
It does suck to waste $100 like that but I know if I ignore my urge I’ll eventually give in and go on an unplanned bingge – which would likely cost me much more than $100. After losing the $100 my urge to gamble was gone and my mood has gradually started to improve.
This method has worked for me for years. After going backwards the past couple of years the time between giving in to my gambling urge is gradually increasing again. This is probably because now that I’m with my GF I’m much less prone to depression. If you want to try a variation of this method for your own urge please note that it only works if you know that you will only give in to the urge as planned.