Reclaim Your Life—Ditch Your TV

The happiest people watch the least amount of TV, so leave yours out in the cold. (Image: Billie Ward/flickr)
The happiest people watch the least amount of TV, so leave yours out in the cold. (Image: Billie Ward/flickr)

Are you aware of your TV habit? This story is about making simple choices to live a more conscious, pro-active life that honors your mind, health, and connection to your community—by ditching your TV, or seriously limiting your TV viewing time. The same issues apply to video games.

We’re all a little guilty of occasionally watching too much TV, right? Well, the average person spends 9 years of their life watching TV. It’s the easiest form of escapism I know—just one click and you’re in another reality.

Watch this short video on TV addiction:

Recently, I did this, and you can too: Before you next allow yourself to get sucked back down the hypnotic TV black hole, ask yourself how this activity—or should I say “inactivity”—contributes to the enrichment of your life and health.

TV can be a real addiction for some. It insidiously steals your time, your attention, and distracts you from your purpose.

TV turns you into a passive observer of another’s life, rather than being an active participant in your own.

Here’s how you can replace your TV addiction with healthier choices:

On a social and emotional level, TV can fill a lonely gap in your life, and it can help you temporarily escape a variety of negative emotions. But it’s a poor substitute for real relationships, and does not help you to face up to your life’s real challenges.

In his blog, Michael Pollock reveals how he, as a previous TV addict, was blowing all his energy on TV instead of dealing with his own problems to create a better life. He then makes a golden  statement:

Nobody on their deathbed wished they’d spent more time watching TV.

Tips to help you to reclaim your life purpose and overcome the hypnotic pull of your TV:

  • Having a clear vision for your life direction helps you focus more effort toward making positive changes, and honoring your goals.
  • Get real! Be aware of how much time you are spending watching TV, and keep a record.
  • Plan your day and consciously stick to it. Writing a list may help.
  • Stay in the positive! Change is possible, but you need to be the change in your life.
  • Choose alternatives to watching TV. Now, you have more time to pursue a new healthier hobby.
  • Exercise more. It’s so good for your mood and wellbeing. And the perfect way to break mental habits.
  • Recognize the benefits: slow and peaceful mealtimes, better relationship with your partner, the list is as long as you make it.
  • Silence is golden; appreciate a world without the banter of TV in the background. Or alternatively, play some of your music.
  • Invest in your social life. People who are connected to their community generally feel more confident, and develop a deeper sense of belonging.

Consider this living example: If you swap an hour of TV a night to learn a musical instrument, in two years, you will be at an intermediate level. Your new developing skill will open doorways to new friendships, an improved self-image, and self-confidence.

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