We all love television. Escaping into another world is a fun, relaxing departure from the day’s stresses. But those hours spent in front of the tube are hours that could be better used doing fun things in real life. Learning to curtail your tube time can benefit your lifestyle and even your health.
Why We Love It
Television provides a comfortable presence, especially for those with an empty nest, or the newly single. The sudden quiet of a house can be rather lonely later in life. When we watch TV, the sound of voices can make it feel like we have a full house again. Shows are entertaining, engaging, they can make us laugh and get in touch with our emotions.
The benefit of television is the escape it provides. Not only does it fill a social void, but watching television takes us away from the problems of the day, long-term issues, and any impending items we just don’t want to deal with.
Why We Should Limit It
It’s no mystery that watching television is a lazy thing to do. After all, you’re simply sitting there with no personal engagement. Nothing is accomplished when you watch television, and your mind is rarely even exercised. Time is wasted, the body is stagnant, and the brain is still – so it’s both a physical and psychological drain. We all need to unwind, but we need to make sure we don’t overdo downtime. Life passes by faster than a commercial break.
A Little Goes A Long Way
It’s not that you have to give up television entirely. Just set a sort of diet.
Pick your top five or six favorite shows and make a schedule. Quality over quantity is the idea, here. The best part? The week will go from a fluid motion of similar days, in which a weekend is an old concept, to having structure, like pre-retirement days.
Implementing a schedule where you track activities, as well as your shows, will give you a better sense of time. You’ll get more done, and you’ll be happier, and healthier. There’s nothing to lose.
Be careful of the remote control. It’s mind blowing how much less television you’ll watch if you actually have to get up every time you want to change channels or adjust the volume. Plus, it can eliminate all those hours you spend channel surfing.
Enjoy some real family time and eat meals, especially dinner, with the television OFF.
What We Gain
The time you spend watching television could be otherwise used for… you can insert your own answer, but some ideas would be housekeeping, cooking, reading, exercising, playing a game, visiting friends or family, gardening, painting, walking the dog, etc. The options are endless. If you limit your television hours, you open up a whole new world, one that’s yours.
Research shows that wealthy people don’t average even an hour of television a day. That’s because they’re getting things done. With all those free hours, there are a million things you can do. The trick is to find those things. A list is an excellent way to think about how to be happiest at this stage of your life. What things do you dream of doing?
Energy spent on other, stimulating activities is also great for your health. Instead of sitting on the couch, you’re moving around, from one activity to another, and that movement helps with weight loss and mental sharpness.