Thanks to the growth of consumer electronics over the past decade, the population is spending more time watching TV than ever before. Tuning into your favorite show used to mean sitting down at a particular time, fiddling with the aerial and hoping for the best.
Now, we can watch TV on tablets, smartphones, and laptops on demand. What’s more, most of us use streaming subscriptions to access even more round-the-clock entertainment. So what is the true cost of our obsession with the box? Is it compromising more than just our attention spans?
The answer is complicated, as the digital television transition affected our environment in more ways than one. Not only did the replacement of old TV sets send millions of electronic waste to the landfill, but energy consumption from streaming devices is at an all-time high, according to Greenpeace.
Needless to say, we could all benefit from a little less screen time. So if you’re anxious to reduce your carbon footprint (as we all should be), take back your evenings by swapping out your TV habit with any one of these five alternatives.
Go to Live Shows
Rather than sitting on your couch, soak up a more authentic experience by going to live concerts and events. Imagine how much more captivating a live soccer game can be when you’re watching from the stands instead of falling asleep in front of a screen. Visit Ticketsales.com for information on live sports games in your area.
Read a Book
Reading every day has been scientifically proven to improve your health. Picking up a book can extend your vocabulary, strengthen your brain’s memory function, reduce stress levels and increase your attention span. What’s more, taking out a library card won’t cost you a dime, but it will expand your education and provide some therapy for the mind.
The benefits of daily yoga practice are plentiful. Not only does stretching out on the mat improve muscle tone and function, make your body more supple, improve heart health and make it easier to maintain a healthy weight, it also has numerous psychological benefits. You can start with ten minutes per day and gradually work up to lengthier workouts.
Learn a New Skill
We all enjoy watching TV, but let’s face it – it’s time wasted. Watching documentaries or getting engrossed in your favorite shows can increase your mood and even provide you with fresh insight and education, but it’s all about moderation. Try learning a new skill such as cooking, writing or drawing one or two nights a week, and observe its positive impact on your sense of fulfillment and wellbeing.
Curb Your TV Time
No one’s expecting you to give up TV altogether, but if you want to take back your evenings and make your downtime more productive, then it’s a good idea to curb your screen time. Set yourself a daily limit, and don’t channel hop. Instead, focus on the shows you genuinely want to watch, and remember to switch off your set when you’re not using it.