Turn Off The Television

The Television is the most efficient productivity and creativity killer on the planet.

Why do so many people spend so much time watching tv? Is it because they want to just flop down and relax with the tv doing all the work of entertaining them?

But are you really entertained while watching television, or are you simply occupied?

Once you start watching tv, don’t you get into a groove and when the next show comes on, do you think “Oh, I really wanted to see this – I’ll just stay and watch this next show, then I’ll get back to what I was doing”? How many times does it stop at that next show?

The reason tv is such a creativity and productivity killer is not because of the time you spend in front of it. Sure that time is lost, but hey, you’ve earned a break (you have earned it right?)

Where the tv is most insidious is in the rest of the hours of you day. To put your brain in the mode of passive reception of entertainment, it needs to shut down your imagination temporarily.

Let me ask you… how many successful people watch tv regularly? I’ve never heard of any (but I’d be interested if you could prove me wrong). Could there be a reason NONE of them do?

Your imagination is like any muscle – the more you use it, the stronger it’ll be; the less you use it, the weaker. So shutting down your imagination for the hour (or five) that you watch tv is causing you to starve your imagination.

If you don’t believe me, why not give it a try? If you watch a few hours of tv a night, just go one day without watching tv. If it’s no big deal for you to do that, go a week.

Notice how much more enjoyment you get out of life, how much time you spend with loved ones, how productive you are during the day, how many good books you read and how much your creativity soars.

If there are certain tv shows you watch regularly, do you watch them because you REALLY love them (be honest) or because they are on at the time you regularly flop down on the couch and flick the tv on? If you really love them, why not buy the box set (or whatever seasons are available)? It’s a great test of how much you love the show. You also get the chance to support the producers and encourage them to keep making that show.

The secondary benefit of buying the box set is that you don’t have to sit through the ads pumping their specially crafted messages directly into your brain. Also, you end up spending 33% less time watching each episode, freeing you up to either watch more of the show or spend time with your family. That’s right, 33%. I couldn’t believe it when I found that one out.

Tv shows are either 20 minutes or 40 minutes long, but they go for 30 or 60 minutes on tv. That means you’re getting around 20 minutes of ads screaming at you for every hour you watch tv.

Put down the remote, get off the couch and go do something amazing with your life. Be a creator, not a consumer. Start a blog, get a video camera and video blog, go for a walk. Do whatever it takes to break the addiction to tv and your life will be a lot better off.

4 thoughts on “Turn Off The Television”

  1. That’s so true… I gave up TV some years ago in order to have time to write a course I was asked to give and I’ve NEVER looked back… I still watch TV occasionally but on my terms. Even my kids now watch no TV during the week.

  2. Definately agree. I can’t remember the last time I sat down to watch a show on television – makes so much sense to borrow or buy the show – the money spent on it is nothing compared to the value of my time – not only the advertisements, but also the waiting around for the show to start on time…

  3. It’s amazing how many people watch it for hours, then say they have no time for anything else. Having been a fitness professional for over 25 years, I’ve heard this hundreds of times. But, it’s funny, when I sit people down and look at the HOURS they have available each day. They are blown away!

    1. That’s very true. I think it comes down to the effect where tv turns off the conscious mind. In that scenario it would be easy to completely lose track of time.

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