September is now complete, and I did make it through the whole month without watching any TV at home. I had to qualify that with the “at home” statement because there were a handful of occasions where I was over at someone else’s house, or in a bar, and the TVs were on, but I did not focus my attention on them. However, I can say with absolute certainty that at no point in September was watching TV my main activity.
I also have to give extra kudos to Megan, because she was quite sick one Saturday night and even though I told her she could watch a movie if she wanted to take her mind off of it, she refused, wanting to honestly complete the challenge!
So what have I learned from this experience?
- If you think reducing the amount of TV you watch will make you bored that is simply not true, your time quickly becomes filled with other activities. I read five books in September, cooked some new recipes, spent more time talking to people and also worked on this blog amongst many other activities.
- I didn’t miss the start of the new fall TV season much at all. I thought towards the end of September I would start wanting to catch the season premieres of my favorite shows, but I honestly didn’t even think about it too much. Not watching TV during September also allowed me to avoid being sucked in by the countless promos for new shows that run during the month. In fact I may make no TV September an annual thing to help avoid getting sucked into new shows.
- There are times such as when you are sick or after a long hard day, when watching TV really does provide a nice escape and is soothing on the mind. I am looking forward to indulging in that option on occasion once again.
How will my TV viewing habits change going forward?
- I think my TV viewing will be much more deliberate from now on. There will be a few shows that I still watch regularly, but there will be much less of turning on the TV and finding something to watch. Instead of watching 11-12 hours per week I am definitely going to be down to 3-5 hours max (depending on what sports are on).
- Megan and I made the jump and cancelled our cable completely in mid-September, so I won’t have countless channels at my fingertips anymore. However, I think between the five free channels I can get with an antenna, the various movies and TV series’ I own, and what is available online, we will have plenty to watch when we want. Also, instead of being at the mercy of what is on, we will be free to choose ourselves!
If anyone of you is looking for a way to free up some time in your life for other activities, I highly recommend giving up TV for one month and see how you do. Once you get through the first few days it becomes easier and easier, and I’d bet you’d be quite surprised by how little you actually miss it!