I am a bit of a junkie when it comes to TV. Between American Idol, The Voice, Biggest Loser, Modern Family, The Office, Oprah (yes, I DVR’d Oprah), Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Pregnant in Heels (okay, this is a mortifying list) and more, it’s frightening to estimate how many hours of my life were spent on watching TV each week.
Summer hiatus seems to be a perfect time to ease into a new lifestyle that’s much less dependent on TV, so I’ve instituted a challenge. From noon today until noon next Friday, I will watch no television whatsoever. Zip. Nada.
But just because there aren’t many new episodes on does not make this easy. Jon went away for a guys’ weekend this morning and I’m alone for the next 72 hours. I’d normally have spent several of those hours watching my trashy reality shows that he (and most normal people) cannot stand. This time, there’s no TV crutch to lean on.
Instead, I’ve made plans to do some projects with my mom tonight. We’re either painting my bathroom a beautiful gray (see inspiration pic below, which I found here) or organizing photos and sewing curtains. Tomorrow, I’ve got a boot camp class and a BBQ, and I plan to spend the rest of the day decluttering the office. Sunday is blissfully open. I’m thinking gym, church, scrapbooking and a girls’ night would be the perfect plan.
Just looking at this schedule makes me happy. My house will be cleaner, my body will be getting more exercise, and I’ll be making more plans with people. How sad that TV has stopped some of this!
Weeknights will be tougher than weekends, though. After a morning workout, nine hours of work and a long commute (nearly two hours between the drive there and home), I am WIPED. I typically eat a quick dinner and crash on the couch. I’m sure there will be nights on the couch in my future still–I think it’s GOOD to veg sometimes–but I hope there will be more doing other things as well.
I also hope this helps Jon and I to connect more. Too many nights, we find ourselves eating dinner on TV trays and going our separate ways after dinner: him to the computer and me sticking with the TV. Instead, I’d love to take the dogs for walks, play Scrabble, or sit together in front of the computer and plan our dream vacation (it’s very important to be prepared in case we ever win the lottery, you know!).
I’m not giving up TV completely. But I WILL be much more selective in what I watch and remember that for every hour I spend by the TV, I’m losing an hour somewhere else. I’m hoping this mindset trickles over into the finances domain of my life as well. I sometimes have a difficult time remembering that every dollar spent eating out is a dollar less for vacations, a future home, etc. Overall, my goal is this: I want the way I spend my time to be a good reflection of my priorities and values. For this to happen, it’s time to turn off the TV.