Television, you may love it or hate it, but you cannot ignore it.
After a hectic day and the rat race of life, all you want to do is sit back, relax and watch TV. It is the most preferred recreational activity for you as it makes you forget all your tension and worries and takes us you to a different world.
You are glued to the TV which brings the world into your drawing-room. Watching TV keeps you in good humor with a variety of entertainment shows, cartoons, documentary films, live shows, dramas, commercials, etc. It is also informative and enriches your knowledge with recent updates on sports, science, inventions, politics and all important events and current affairs of the world. Watching TV releases hormones called endorphins in the brain that makes you feel good and relieves your stress and anxiety.
The positive influence of TV
1. A visual learning mode: Animal Planet, Discovery and other Infotainment channels make it easier to learn and boost your memory retention.
2. Staying updated: Authentic and highly analyzed information about current affairs worldwide in real-time, within minutes they happen is available on TV.
3. DIY channels provide you all the information you look for related to home improvement, finances, health, physical fitness, home improvement, cooking, etc.
4. You get access to new career opportunities of which you were otherwise unaware. You thus realize your goals and dreams.
5. TV makes you universal in thinking and outlook. Television offers Social Surrogacy and makes you feel less lonely in the absence of friends and family.
6. Sitting in the comfort of your drawing room, you can travel to far off places, get to know about the culture of other nations, and get a better understanding of the Universe.
7. You can watch special world-famous events like the Olympics or Award shows through live telecast which would otherwise be impossible for you.
However, in spite of these positive effects of television, there are so many negative effects too.
The Cons of Watching Television
– Health concerns: Prolonged TV watching causes your eyes to get dry. This damages your retina as you don’t blink your eyes for a longer time. When you sit sedentary for long periods of time before the ‘idiot box’ you become prone to obesity, the risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, sleep difficulties, premature death, and low fertility.
– Impacts of watching TV for long hours:
* In many homes, TV is the unofficial baby sitter. Young kids sit glued to it while parents do chores and work.
* TV keeps children from physical activity in children and they become ‘couch potatoes’.
* Watching excessive TV results in unhealthy eating habits.
* Reduced interaction time with other children of their age greatly hamper their brain development, communication, verbal and language skills and adversely affect their social behavior.
* Young, impressionable children tend to be affected more adversely and negatively than adults. They get exposed to inappropriate content that has violence, drugs alcohol, and sex. This has a negative impact on children as they reenact this violent and aggressive behavior.
* Television commercials brainwash you into consumerism.
* Too much television can ruin your relationships as you tend to ignore your loved ones.
* It lowers your creativity and imagination.
* Makes you lazy and you postpone even important work.
Falling into the trap: Sitting in front of a television, you are hypnotized, tuned in, but zoned out. Watching TV interferes with your ability to grow, to learn new things, to lead an active life you live in your own, self-created, make-belief world.
The way out: Has watching television had become a full-blown addiction for you? Are you using it as an escape mechanism to distract yourself from the fears, problems, challenges, shame, embarrassment, and stress of your daily life? Is it your coping mechanism for boredom and to fill the void of an otherwise empty life.
Coming to Terms With your TV Addiction: The first step to tackling a problem is to admit that you have one.
“Every single hour of television watched after the age of 25 reduces the viewer’s life expectancy by 21.8 minutes.”– Gretchen Rubin
Simple yet effective tips:
* Avoid turning on the TV as soon as you wake up.
* Monitor and Track your TV time. Dedicate a particular time to watch the television and follow the rules very strictly.
* Set a daily time limit. Enforce a daily cap. Limit your television time to one to two hours per day. Watch highlights and not the full match.
* Instead of watching current affairs and news the whole day, watch towards the fag end of the day. You get all the news that matters in the shortest time.
* Avoid using a remote (lazy bones) to change channels. Instead, if you do manually, you will be forced to move ten. This will divert you from the attraction.
* First, decide which program to watch and stick to it.
* Do not surf channels. After you finish your shows for the day, turn off the television promptly.
* Cover your TV when not in use. When you can’t see the TV, you are much less likely to turn it on.
* Unplug your TV when not in use.
* Use TV as a reward and not as a default activity.
* Ensure you have one television-free day a week. Spend this time catching up with household chores you’ve been putting off, or spending time making appointments and connecting with your partner.
* Also, restrict your computer and mobile use. Block sites like Amazon Prime Videos, Netflix and Hulu you use on your computer so that you aren’t tempted to binge-watch programs. In addition to this, do not forget to delete the catch-up service apps on your mobile phone.
Time magazine estimates that the average Netflix subscriber spends 1 hour and 33 minutes of streaming TV every day.
Tips to avoid watching TV
Spending several hours in front of the tube steals your time and energy away from more fulfilling activities. Gear up, start working to break your habit and limit your TV viewing. Replace your TV time with alternative, rewarding and productive activities.
Pay attention to activities that matter most to you like your physical, mental, emotional health and well-being, friends, family, and community.
* Socialize. Seek the company of like-minded people who have either quit watching TV or trying to do so like you. This will reduce your temptation to watch TV.
* Unsubscribe online web sites and social media accounts that are dedicated to TV programs. Reduce your screen-time listen to the podcasts that add to your knowledge and wisdom.
* Kids learn things through observation and imitation, be a good role model by reducing your TV time.
* Exercise Consistently. It is a ‘keystone habit’. It also reduces your smoking, drinking and caffeine intake. You eat less junk food and more healthy food. You, thus, remain fit.
* Develop a Sense of Purpose and Mission for Your Life. Make a small place for television in life. A very small place, only as a means of short-term relaxation and entertainment. Identify your passions. Invest in yourself. Build your life.
Ways To Better Spend Your Free Time:
a) Undertake activities that provide you with genuine experiences
Use your free time wisely and design a high quality of life for yourself by watching a sunset, walking through and exploring your neighborhood, hiking in the woods, working out in a park, planting a garden, camping, practicing Yoga, Meditation, visiting a museum, going on a vacation and learning about a new culture.
b) Spend your time on your future self
Learning valuable and fun skills like cooking, carpentry, construction, writing, public speaking, martial arts, increasing typing speed, teach yourself coding or computer programming, photography, editing audio, and video, starting a podcast, learning a foreign language, etc.
c) Making extra cash by being a little creative and be willing to experiment. Focus on your skills or craft like handmade jewelry, making handicrafts, painting, drawing, sculpting, putting old items on sale on eBay and Craigslist, doing interiors, renovating a house, landscaping, babysitting, tutoring, writing an eBook, a short story or a play, freelance writing, organizing events, graphic designing, etc.
d) Experimental activities: Inspire your brain with innovative perspectives and ideas
- Create your own blog.
- Travel the world. Take the dream trip you’ve always wanted.
- Create innovative videos and air it on the YouTube channel.
- Create your own business online.
- Take a journey of self-discovery.
- Challenge yourself with bungee jumping, sky diving, etc.
- Find ways to create a second passive income.
There is an inversely proportional relationship between time spent in watching television and your productivity and well being.
You no longer see TV time as ‘free time’. It is your ‘improvement time’ to do the things you really want to do in life. It should add value to your life.
Begin today. Do it EVERY DAY!. Yes, You can.Spread the Love