Have you ever wanted to know how to stop watching TV? Maybe you have tried and failed miserably.
It is possible that you have stumbled across the title of this post and you were curious or fascinated.
Many people have reasons for wanting to know how to stop watching TV and I can help you with that since I did it myself.
The truth is that watching TV is actually a habit and for some an addiction especially when you cannot seem to have any control over the habit.
This addiction is causing challenges in the lives of many people so I decided to write this article to give you a hand.
If you are wondering if it is possible to give up on TV in such a short space of time I can tell you that it is a very realistic goal.
Of course, there is the option to give up TV over a long-term period like 12 months but you gain more if you do it over a 30-day period.
Why I Stopped Watching TV?
Over 10 years ago I was doing a course in digital marketing. The mentor on the program advised that in order to be successful you need to put in a lot of work.
He mentioned during his talk on the right mindset that you should stop watching TV or at least reduce the number of hours. Because it will not give you more time but it will improve your mindset.
At that time of my life I was going through a really tough time. My marriage was on the rocks and I wanted to find a way to be more successful.
It was during this time that I realised that I had very little to offer the world. I could write a book on avoiding a broken marriage but this was not my passion.
I felt like I wasted many years of my life doing nothing. Yes, I had a degree plus some additional training but what can I do with that training?
Google was still 5-6 years old and everyone was trying to understand what they can do with this new technology.
I came to the realisation that I was a full-fledged consumer rather than a producer or creator. I needed to be able to offer something to attain success.
Other People Who Stopped Watching TV
Just in case you think I am a complete weirdo who may be better off becoming a nun at a convent somewhere.
I wanted to share about other people who had similar experiences to me or who can see the benefits of not watching TV altogether.
Dan Western wrote an article in Wealthy Gorilla that outlines 10 reasons to stop watching TV.
Some of the reasons I found most profound were the ones about wasting time, unrealistic expectations as well as programming negativity.
The one around Lamborghini adverts was especially eye-opening and I cannot say if it is true or not as I haven’t watched TV in so many years.
Cadence Bambenek wrote a Business Insider article in 2016 about what happened to her when she stopped watching TV.
Her article really spoke to me as I also get those weird reactions when I tell people that I don’t watch TV.
She is so correct when she talks about how she does not feel the need to keep up anymore with anyone or anything.
A few of the benefits that she listed include being comfortable spending time alone, working towards her future career and spending more time reading.
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The Weaning Process
I had children at home so getting rid of the television at that point was virtually impossible.
As a parent, I created two TV addicts so it was my fault that they wanted to watch TV.
This is when I started educating them on the benefits of not watching television and thing called consumerism.
At the same time I started devouring tons of books on success. I read Rich Dad, Poor Dad, Think and Grow Rich.
It’s Rising Time, The Traveler’s Gift, Instant Cashflow, Short Hands, Long Pockets and many other books.
I finally came to the realisation that there was so much more to life than TV and that my bank balance reflected the type of person I was. Consumer vs Producer.
Consumer vs Producer
It was in one of these many books or two I really cannot remember where they emphasised the fact that your bank balance is a true reflection of the wealth you have created as an individual.
Yes, I was a full time employee at the time so I was living month to month from one salary payment to another.
The fact is that I was trying to find a way to generate income online without having to take another job.
Like many parents I wanted to have that ability to work from home or start a business or generate royalties from something I created.
It was at that time that I learned about the 4-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris. I quickly ordered it and devoured it over a few days.
At that time, it was the most comprehensive book I have read about how to move from being a consumer to being a creator.
Becoming a Creator – Benefits of Giving Up TV
After just two years of reading this book I wrote and published my first book called ‘101 e-Marketing Secrets’ which is currently out of print.
In 2011, I published my 2nd book ‘Web Traffic 4 Idiots’ which is still available but is in need of updating because I learned so much since then.
At this point you are probably wondering if you need to become a book writer. Well, you can become whatever you want to be.
When I stop watching TV, I replaced my old habits with new ones and I acquired so many skills that I knew I needed guidance on how to harness those skills.
I learned how to build websites using WordPress.org, I learned how to build landing pages, how to get traffic to a website.
I also learned about the difference between free and paid traffic as well as drop shipping, Amazon FBA, Adwords, Facebook Ads, LinkedIn marketing and Pinterest Marketing.
The benefits of switching roles to becoming a creator are endless. I can go on about the hundreds of things I learned.
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Finding a Passion
In order to stop watching TV altogether one needs to have an excitement for a passion or something else worthwhile in life.
So far you can see that I had a realisation in my life which was that one thing that has motivated me away from watching TV.
In fact, I wish that my 4 years in college was as exciting as my last 10-15 years. I started to wonder why college was not geared more towards productivity.
Most people graduating from college are excited to get into a job. Very few want to start a business, write a book or start a big project.
Is the education system one big mess? What can be done to increase the chances of graduates being more productive than they are at present?
I believe it is important to find your passion and then get a mentor to help you develop that passion into producing something sellable.
Stop Watching TV Preparation
As I mentioned at the beginning of this article watching tv is a habit and in some cases, it can be an addiction.
It is nearly impossible to stop watching TV without replacing that habit with something else.
Your reason to stop watching TV needs to be huge! It needs to be a lot bigger than your reason for wanting to watch TV.
Spend some time assessing your reasons for wanting to watch TV and compare it with what you want to do as a replacement.
At the end of the day I wanted to be a producer so that I can generate an income online. I also wanted to be the authority on a specific topic like digital marketing.
What is your why? Is it big enough?
30-Day Stop Watching TV Plan – Quitting TV
I am not going to tell you that it is going to be easy. That would be a big fat lie. To stop watching TV is very hard.
That is the reason it requires a whole lot of preparation and determination. If you plan to enrol in a course as a replacement have it ready to go.
Here are 10 things that you can do to replace your TV habit:
- Start a food blog
- Learn to play guitar
- Become a freelance writer
- Start a business
- Learn to code
- Become an illustrator
- Learn graphic design
- Become a voice artist
- Publish a book
- Learn interior design
As you can see many of the suggested habits are geared towards taking you from a run of the mill consumer to a fully fledged creator or producer.
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Week 1 – How To Stop Watching TV
Create a schedule of your current situation. Many people randomly watch TV throughout the day on their smart phones or on their TV at home.
In order to kick the TV watching habit, you need to schedule when you currently watch TV.
In a way, it is like trying to capture a fly or a spider. You want to box it all into a small area before making an attack.
Week 2 – Watch Less TV
Replace your habit of watching TV for 3 days a week. In my opinion, the best way to stop watching TV is to go cold turkey.
However, not everyone has that will power or motivation to do that in one go. If that is the case just do it step by step.
Week 3 – TV Detox
Only watch TV one day a week. Now, you are watching TV only as a treat rather than doing it every day.
You should only do it as a form of relaxation only on a Saturday night or a Sunday for about 1-2 hours.
Week 4 – Give Up TV For Life
Assess your need to watch TV now and compare it to your habit in week 1. Have you missed the TV as much as you thought you would?
How do you feel about removing the TV habit from your life altogether? The end goal is to remove the TV from your house.
Also, you will want to unsubscribe from all TV streaming channels and movie channels until you can really get a handle on things.
One of the best things that will help you to stop watching TV is setting a goal that you want to achieve as well as a reward.
Learning a new skill will never feel as good as watching TV unless there is a big goal that you can achieve.
These goals need to be life transforming in order for them to be effective. This can be a book launch or a product launch.
I know that sounds super scary but ask yourself this vital question. How would you feel about launching your own book or product or blog or freelance career?
How does that feeling compare to watching TV? You need to make some big scary goals and get help to accomplish them.
The reality is that these goals can take 12 months or sometimes up to 5 years to accomplish depending on your skill and ability to change.
What Will It Take?
Another way to stop watching TV is to ask yourself that vital question. If time and money was not an issue what would you be doing instead of watching TV?
Here is a list of things that can get you thinking:
- Travel the world
- Volunteer in countries that need help
- Help a local charity
- Generate multiple streams of income
- Learn sky diving
- Take up surfing
- Island hopping in the Caribbean
- Take up sailing
- Teach snorkelling in the Pacific
- See the 7 wonders of the world
Do you ever wish that there was more to life than watching TV? What will it take to get you to live a life intentionally?
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Getting anyone to stop watching TV is super difficult and does require a huge shift in mindset from being a consumer to being a producer.
After over 10 years of not watching TV I can tell you that I feel absolutely liberated and I still have lots of regrets of not doing it sooner.
If you are a parent or thinking of becoming one please take my stupid advice and don’t have a TV in your home.
Your children will thank you for it in many years to come. It will help them to be super productive as they will be active thinkers.
Is it easy to fall back into the habit of watching TV? It certainly is very easy this is why you need to set more goals after you accomplish the initial ones.
Frequently Asked Questions
Watching TV can either be a habit or an addiction depending on how much ability you have to stop.
One of the best ways to reduce watching TV is to first schedule the amount of time you watch television in an effort to understand how many hours you watch TV.
You then need to replace the TV habit with something else. Maybe start by asking yourself why do you want to reduce watching TV.
You will need to find a new habit preferably something that helps you to be productive and that you are passionate about.
Some suggestions include:
1. Learning to play an instruments
2. Starting a blog
3. Taking up a new hobby
4. Enrolling in a course
You will need to find something else to do with your time. If you have time to watch TV all day it could mean that you have a lot of spare time.
Replace that TV watching activity with something else that you enjoy like gardening, a DIY project, learning a new skill or fishing.
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