About 4-5 years ago, in the midst of watching my favorite Netflix TV series, my TV broke. It simply wouldn’t turn back on. Initially I looked into fixing it…and quickly discovered the cost of fixing it would be about the same as a new TV. Was it worth it? I realized not only would I have to spend the money on a new TV but also deal with the hassle of taking the old one off the wall and remounting a new one.
Hmm, decisions, decisions.
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Weeks passed, then months and the old, broken TV was still beautifully mounted on my living room wall. About six months after it broke, I made the decision not to replace it. I had plenty of other things to keep me busy and felt I did not really miss Netflix.
Then March 2020 rolled around and the world was hit by the COVID pandemic. Living on my own, I found myself trapped in my house. No more yoga, no more dance classes, no more dinners with friends. There’s only so much you can do in the four walls of your house.
So, in early April, I broke down and subscribed to Netflix again. No, I still didn’t buy a new TV but I now own a sizable tablet that brings flexibility on where to watch your favorite shows.
I was eager to get back to my favorite TV series I watched 4-5 years earlier, “Once Upon A Time”. Yes, I’m a fairy tale geek. I love “Lord of the Rings,” Disney movies like “Maleficent,” and this TV series. The fairy tale creatures are under a curse and don’t know that they are fairy tale characters. I started back at Season 1 and loved every bit
of it…and then the binge watching started back…
Hello, my name is Hanni and I’m a Netflix Addict.
Within a matter of a view days I got sucked back in the black hole of Netflix. It was hard to walk away at the end of watching just one episode. You know how it goes, the inevitable “cliffhanger” that keeps you coming back for more again and again. Just like the junk food creators, these producers get you so glued that one can easily watch two or three episodes at a time.
In fact, there were many days where I woke up and watched an episode over breakfast, another during lunch, and then a couple of hours in the evening. I was sadly addicted–it was a love/hate relationship. One minute I loved it and the next I was cursing Netflix for reeling me back in.
Around season 3 I knew that Netflix had robbed me of my life. Well, better said, I allowed Netflix to rob me of my life. I wanted to stop but I couldn’t. Seeing that there were 7 seasons with 22 episodes each, I made a commitment that I’ll watch to the end and immediately afterwards cancel my subscription.
And that’s exactly what I did. Within a minute of watching the Season 7 finale, I went to my profile and cancelled Netflix. I immediately felt better and here is why….
Life without TV
A close friend of mine once told me that TV stands for ‘time vanished’ and I couldn’t agree more. In the four months of being sucked into watching TV, all my good habits went out the window. I remember when I first kicked the habit, I didn’t know what to do with myself. But slowly, new and better habits started to fill in.
Now being a week without TV
I feel refreshed, excited, clear-minded, and full of energy again.
● Instead of making the screen the first thing I look at in the morning, I’m back in my meditation chair closing my eyes and going inwards.
● Instead of looking at a screen over lunch, I concentrate on tasting my food again and feel grateful for it nourishing my body.
● Instead of binge watching a show in the evening, I go for walks, read a book and watch documentaries on topics I’d love to learn more about.
● Instead of staring at the screen over the weekend, I look for silence, read scripture, and dance in my living room to music that is uplifting and joyful.
The Science of Health and TV Watching
● Almost as if I had asked for it, the day I cancelled Netflix this study was published. The evidence based on research is pretty solid. The study found that health risks associated with screen time, such as cancer and cardiovascular disease, were at their lowest when adults kept their daily TV time to two hours or less.
● According to Harvard School of Public Health “binge-watching” TV may be harmful to your health. “There’s convincing evidence in adults that the more television people watch, the more likely they are to gain weight or become overweight or obese. And, there’s emerging evidence that too much TV watching also increases the risk of weight-related chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes.”
● Stanford Children’s Health states, digital media may also show children poor eating habits through commercials for high-calorie, low-nutrient foods. Too much screen time can also take away from reading, studying, learning activities, play, and exercise.
Besides TV influencing your health, I firmly believe that watching daily TV stands in the way of you living your best life. Are you looking to strengthen the relationships with your spouse and kids? Are you looking to find more peace and JOY in your life? Would you like to feel more energetic and fulfilled? Then I encourage you to pull the plug and start a new chapter in your life. A chapter where you create the stories that are worth telling.
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