Giving up Television_Avadian photo

Letting GO to Welcome In

Giving up Television_Avadian photoLast week, I cancelled my satellite TV subscription.

Two years ago, I suspended service for two to three months. Since then, I wanted to let go of subscription TV but hit a roadblock—my husband.

When he suggested giving up TV completely, recently, I jumped and cancelled our service.

The following day, I received an unexpected gift.

When my neighbor and I walked the 0.7 mile down to our mailboxes, she received a postcard. An announcement about a play– Great Expectations. I got EXCITED, because Charles Dickens’ story of Pip and Miss Havisham was one of those childhood stories that left an impression on me. Time to see the play after reading the book several times and seeing the movie.

When ONE door closes, ANTHER DOOR opens.

Or, to using another cliché:

You can’t get to second base with your foot still on first.

In order to take a leap of faith, you must be willing to let go.

We don’t realize it: We watch more TV than we think we do.

Couch-Potatoes_AvadianI would have guessed that I watched only one to two hours, some nights, but the truth was,  I could watch three or more. After a hard day of work, I enjoyed being a couch potato. With all that TV watching though, this spud was going no where.

All those hours lost… watching TV

All those hours watching actors, actresses, news broadcasters, documentaries, and even some reality TV.

All those hours of distraction taking never-to-be returned hours from finishing the tasks that would give me peace of mind and reduced mental clutter.

Things I look forward to doing as I get used to this new schedule without TV—

  • Reading an hour
  • Walking an hour
  • Telephoning a friend
  • Catching up with emails
  • Catching up with some online reading
  • Making progress on the stacks of paperwork accumulating on my worktable, mail shelf, and desk

Saturday afternoon, while shopping, we bought a DVD and watched a movie that evening. Two hours of TV in five days. WONDERFUL!

Sunday night, instead of watching the line-up of shows, I took two-and-a-half hours to review the past minutes and Bylaws for one of the associations for which I serve as a board member.

Exciting, huh? Not really.

What’s worse is seeing the folder on my L-shaped desk over the past seven months. I realized if I review the papers again, after having served on the board for seven months, I‘d have a clearer context for our work going forward. I’ll need to devote at least an hour more before I can file the folder for future reference.

We have a choice.

We can spend our time in front of the TV or spend it catching up with the things that pile up in our lives.

If we take at least ONE hour each evening to catch up with reading, imagine what we will gain, in one month–thirty hours of knowledge and progress reading books and/or magazines.

I don’t suggest marathon reading.

Our brains won’t be able to use everything our eyes gloss over. Marathon reading produces similar results as overeating at an all-you-can-eat buffet. You’ll feel upset and won’t be able to use all the information/nutrition at one sitting unless you take time to reflect or digest.

Taking time away from TV to to sit and talk with your spouse during dinner, talking a walk, and reading an hour each day, will have a cumulative effect on your life. I’ve also noticed, I’m less distracted. It’s like my brain isn’t buzzing with thoughts. I can focus and see more clearly. Who would have guessed this as on outcome of giving up TV? Again, after only five days!

If you give up something similar, let us know how it goes.

We can all learn from one another.

It’s not easy to give up something we’re used to in our lives—but as the saying goes (cliché alert): If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep getting what you’ve always gotten. Most often, getting what you’ve always gotten,  isn’t good enough.

For a related perspective, read, WISDOM of the AGES.

1 reply
  1. avatar
    Eric Riddle STUFFologist says:

    Good for you Brenda, saving some money too!

    I do watch TV quite a bit at times, History, Sci Fi and so forth. We do enjoy watching movies as a family too.

    Love that picture of the console TV! Looks very similar to one my wife and I had when we got married…heavy to move.

    I’ll experiment with less TV and let you know how it goes.

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