Do you remember how much we played as kids? How many hours we'd be outside laying in the grass, watching the clouds as they pass by, daydreaming, creating, building? How we seemed to have endless time to play and dream and be? While we certainly have more responsibilities as we grow, I often wonder if we have more time than we think. If we're simply taught to be busy or to believe that we are too old for things. I wonder, what takes up the majority of our time?
As I started to reflect on this more, I began noticing how often I checked my phone automatically, mindlessly even, out of habit. I noticed how much time lapsed as we searched for something to watch on Netflix or OnDemand, and how much time watching TV actually took out of our day. It surprised me how many minutes we'd actually gain by taking it away altogether. So we decided to try it: to unplug our TV to see what would happen.
While it's only been a month, the extra hours we've gained to spend on the things that truly fill us has been transformational: coloring, playing music, long dinners and home cooked meals, more time to write and read, more time to spend with one another in deep conversation, talking walks around the neighborhood, time to be intimate and go to bed earlier, less distraction in general. The list goes on.
And, the best part is, because we're finding more time to do the things that make us feel good, space for gadgets and streaming Stranger Things naturally flows into our day. The only difference is, we no longer feel like we're missing out on something because we've already done it. Plus, it's a little tougher to spend hours watching shows on a 13-inch laptop!
Unplugging our TV has helped us to find more balance in our lives; and, at the end of the day, the goal is not to deprive ourselves of things, but rather to make conscious decisions that best suit us in each moment.
The beauty of life is that it is dynamic. Nothing is set in stone. Perhaps one day we'll change our minds, but for now, we're loving our extra free time at night and don't even think about turning on the TV :)
13 Things to Do Instead of Watching TV
1. Sleep. Most of us don't get nearly as much sleep as we need. Take advantage of this extra time and get into the habit of sleeping early. Establish a nighttime routine that relaxes you and know that it will take time to train yourself. After a few weeks, your body and internal clock will fall into rhythm. Tip: We try to limit screens and bright lights 30-45minutes before bed to help get our circadian rhythms flowing.
2. Quality Time. Spend time with your kids, spouse, family, pets, neighbors, someone you Love, or best of all, yourself. There's nothing like quality time to bond, learn, grow, talk, and pamper yourself and others!
3. Activate Your Mind. Play a board game or a hand of cards. Do a crossword puzzle, sodoku or word jumble. Put together a jigsaw puzzle. Meditate! Anything and everything you enjoy that also benefits your mind.
4. Create Something. Draw. Paint. Color. Garden. Sing. Play music. Create something that brings you heart joy.
5. Cook from Scratch. Take the extra hour or two you'd spend watching TV and learn to make that dish you've always wanted to try, or simply enjoy the process of cooking. Take your time chopping vegetables, measuring out ingredients, and cooking, in general. Allow yourself time to be present and in tune with the food that you're preparing. It truly brings greater pleasure to eat something that you take the time to prepare and also enjoy making in the process.
6. Take A Walk.
There's nothing I Love more than an evening walk with my husband. Not only does it help us to digest our dinner, but it also relaxes us by giving us time to be with Nature
Try taking different paths and see what you discover. Let the route flow to you in the moment.
7. Workout. Not watching TV frees up so much time to get your body moving. Go for a swim, a bike ride, or to the gym. Bust out your yoga mat and workout videos and take advantage!
8. Learn Something New. Don't have a hobby that calls to your soul? Take a class and learn something new: painting, pottery, knitting, archery, dance, voice, music, writing, Tai Kwon Do, yoga. The options are truly endless!
A book, magazine, article, and old journal or letters, whatever calls to you, allow yourself to get lost in it. Tip:
If you're not in the mood to read, why not try writing
10. Volunteer. Make use of your extra time and find a way to give back to your community or the Earth. Nothing grows the heart more than selfless service and spreading Love 💗.
Yes, daydream! How else can you manifest your desires
if you don't imagine them vividly coming true? Let your imagination soar. There are infinite options to explore!!
12. Reflect + Tune In.
Take a few moments every night to reflect on your day
. Think about how you lived and where there's room for growth. List the things you are grateful for. Tune in to the energy of your heart. Self-reflecting
helps us to see our lives more clearly so we can create a life that truly aligns with us.
13. Stargaze. If you're lucky enough to live away from city lights and pollution, take advantage of the night sky and stargaze. Let your mind wander in awe of all the distant places and beings that are out there. Get lost in the twinkle of the night.
How would you like to spend your extra time?
Love + Light,
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