I have fallen into a trap. Since moving I have found myself watching way more TV shows and movies. I know I am not alone with this problem and most Americans are glued to their screens. The average citizen spends 7.4 hours per day looking at some sort of screen. Some reports estimate as high as 11 hours per day.
Listen to the panda.
This leads me to my challenge.
I challenge you for the next 8 weeks that on either Tuesday or Thursday you will not turn on a screen once you walk through your front door. (If you are ambitious why not both days?). That includes your computer, smartphone, television or any other passive device that I’m missing.
I am the evidence. I have been doing this consistently since mid February and have added on average 6 to 8 hours a week to activities that I enjoy. I have been able to read an additional 200-400 pages a week. I was scrolling through my Goodreads list and noted I have been reading a book a week. I have never done that before in my life!
With some of this extra time I have reached out to my friends (or older relatives) and actually have a phone conversation to hear their voice. (Occasionally a friend will want to Skype and I will do so because I am not passively ingesting garbage. I am engaging with a live person). I feel my relationships are much healthier then they have been in the past.
You don’t realize just how much time the screen eats up until you disconnect. I felt I was always rushing and had no time. There is time plenty of time to do the things you enjoy doing. You just have to make an effort.
What to do now?
What are you going to do with all that extra time?
My recommendation are to use this time to be creative, deepen social connections or active hobbies. Here is a list of somethings: read, go do something outside, journal, craft, paint, playing a board game or possibly call a friend.
Just detach yourself for a few hours every week from the siren like pull of the screen. I promise you will see a change that you will like and want in your life.
Down in the comment section let me know your thoughts, if you will accept my challenge and possibly what you would do with an additional 6 to 8 hours a week.
Until next time,
*There will always be that 15% of people that cannot participate. If you are a student or work two jobs to stay afloat no pressure. However, you get back from life what you put into life. If you are a parent show your kids that there is more to life than screens. If your a 20 something push through being tired because this will energize you given time.
**Yes, I am posting this on a Tuesday. I will now spend the next three hours reading :p