'Don't you know too much TV is bad for your eyes...and your morals, attention span, intelligence...'

As many people know I work for the local cable company and have for just a little more than 5 years now. I love my job, I love my staff discounts on services. I love TV. however I think I may love TV a little 2 much.

Most nights I just come home and sit down in front of the TV. Pick from one of the 20 some odd series recordings or hockey games or some other sports game recorded. I find myself just sitting and not doing anything productive in my spare time. I do love my TV. I don’t think I could really give up watching it completely. Especially my Hockey. That would just not go over well with me. I am a bit of a hockey nut just like your stereo typical Canadian.

There have been many times where I have thought that If it were not for the fact that I basically get cable for free I would not have it. That is probably true but given I do get it free I have it. In reality it would actually cost me more to get my hockey online via NHL game center live than I would save by canceling cable so the cable stays.

Of course this comes with all kinds of shows I find myself watching on the side. Some of my favorites would be Vikings, Game Of Thrones, Da Vinci’s Demons, Sleepy Hallow, Gotham and Big Bang Theory. Along with these shows however comes a whole lot of others.

I started thinking about whether I watch 2 much TV when I was trying to teach my 5 year old one of her home school lessons. I would explain it to her, then have her go and do the work, while she tried to do the work I kept watching my hockey game. She was not understanding however and becoming frustrated.  I was watching my game and I was just not being very productive. My wife also has asked several times if we can eat together as a family at the table which we almost never do because I am too busy watching a game or other TV show.  On the rare occasions that we have eaten together at the table I think every time, this is nice, why don’t we do this more often. Maybe working for the cable company has spoiled me to an extent.

My wife asked me the other night if having cable is really worth it. I had told her that we would not have it if I did not work for the cable company. I would still want my hockey at the least so the cable stays. we would save nothing so we might as well have it instead of paying out-of-pocket for NHL game center live. I did tell her however that perhaps I do spend too much time with the T.V. and I could probably stand to find a way to drastically reduce how much I do watch.

I looked through all the series recording I have set up and asked myself “would I be willing to pay to watch this show if I did not get free cable” The results were no on well over half the shows I had been watching. So many of them are on services like Netflix or Shomi already or likely will be at some point in the future. Both of which are services that I subscribe to. Crave T.V. is another streaming service that I may get in the future once it is available for everyone. Nice thing about those services is that you can watch the shows anytime and don’t have to worry about how much space is filling up on the PVR.

I went from 20 something series recordings to 6, mainly shows that I have come to really like and enjoy. Only 3 of which are currently in season. While I do read my books in the morning before work for about an hour this will give me more time to spend with the family, my books (which if you know me I most definitely cannot live without!) and focus on other things of high importance, like not spending time fighting kids over chores. Maybe even help them out with the chores.

I certainly am not giving up TV, but I can certainly stand to watch a lot less T.V. I have decided to implement an experiment to see what happens when I do not watch TV every day. I have created some rules for myself when it comes to T.V.

  1. No T.V. on work days, it stays off
  2. There is only one exception to rule number 1, and that is I am allowed to watch my hockey, basketball, football, soccer game etc… on work days but only those games and only on days that there is a game on. (After all I do not want to get behind)
  3. I will only follow one hockey team instead of 4-5 (this reduces the amount of games I would watch by 66-75%)
  4. My days off become my “T.V.” days but only for a limited time. No more than 4 hours max.

These simple rules would effectively reduce my overall T.V. watching from 20-25 hours/week to 10-15 hours per week. That is an additional 10-15 hours a week I can focus on things like family, and quiet nights reading after the kids go to bed, dinner at the table and other things. We could do things like going swimming after work instead of waiting for a day off which is often busy with things like watching T.V. and grocery shopping, napping etc … To put this in terms of days, I have literally been spending anywhere from 43-54 days a year watching T.V. by reducing my T.V. watching time I can give myself back 21-32 days a year to spend with my family.

With this freed up time I can focus more on writing my blog. I can be more effective in helping my wife with home schooling our children. I can maybe take my kids to the park after work instead of shooing them off to watch their T.V.  Take the dog for a walk more often which lets face it, she is a fat little mutt that needs more exercise.

It has often been said that time spent with kids is more about quality than quantity, but it is hard to have either if we are caught up in T.V. land and not spending any time with the kids at all. God knows I love my children but sometimes you just need to take some time to step back and think about how your behaviors really reflect where your priorities are. While my family is most definitely my priority an outside observer may think otherwise if all they saw was that I come home and spend time with the T.V. rather than my family.

Our families are important and It can become very easy to get caught up in modern conveniences and entertainments. T.V. is just one of those modern conveniences. There is nothing wrong with T.V. however like everything else, all things in moderation. We need to ensure that we are taking time to step back and really evaluate what is important and ensure we are not neglecting those things which are and should be important to us.

It is my hope that by doing this I can be a better example to my children and they too will focus more on those things that are most important in life.

And that is the Gospel according to Andrew


2 comments on “2 MUCH TV

  1. Thank you for expressing courage and having self respect. Re (means again) and spect (from latin and it means to look at). You are analyzing yourself from within and questioning things so that you can be a better human being…that is GREAT stuff and definitely on the path towards freedom and liberty. Thanks for your comments.

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