How To Stop Watching TV OR… At Least Not As Much

September 26, 2010  |  General Tips, Managing Time, Self-Improvement

Today, we’ll focus on one of the biggest obstacles standing in your way towards academic success. There are indeed a lot of different distractions out there today but none is as elusive, innocent looking yet devilishly perjured as television.

Changing Habits is Difficult

First thing you’ll need to know is that changing a habit is almost always difficult. If you spend too many hours in front of the TV set, changing that behavior won’t be easy and it will demand a lot of patience and perseverance from your part. It is often said that the first step towards a remedy is recognizing the problem and this hold true here as well. If you are addicted to watching TV, day in and day out you’ll need to recognize this before you can start to take the necessary steps to watch less TV.

In doing so there are obviously two different roads towards this phenomenon, the first one being watching less TV and the second one stop watching TV all together. It may seem that the second option is more difficult in nature but this doesn’t necessarily hold true. It is sometimes said that complete abstention from something is easier than perfect moderation. This holds true for somethings of which TV maybe included, however this varies from person to person. Since there are two approaches towards treating this disease; I’ll try to discuss them both in detail.

Watching Less TV

Start out by asking yourself how much you watch every day. If you watch 5 hours of TV a day that equals 35 hours per week. In a span of 60 years that equals 12 years and 6 months! Talk about wasting your life! Begin by calculating how much TV you watch per day and then put up a goal of how much you wish to reduce this number.

The second thing that needs to be moderated is obviously the content of what you watch. The more educational content, whether they be (for instance) documentaries or debates

Stopping All Together

This isn’t as crazy as it may seem. Most if not all of the TV functions is replicated by the PC which in fact makes it expendable. If you wish to stop watching TV all together and rid yourself of the monster entirely I recommend you to read the following poem by Road Dahl, a famous English writer with roots in Norway.

He once wrote,

“The most important thing we’ve learned,
So far as children are concerned,
Is never, NEVER, NEVER let
Them near your television set —
Or better still, just don’t install
The idiotic thing at all.
In almost every house we’ve been,
We’ve watched them gaping at the screen.
They loll and slop and lounge about,
And stare until their eyes pop out.
(Last week in someone’s place we saw
A dozen eyeballs on the floor.)
They sit and stare and stare and sit
Until they’re hypnotised by it,
Until they’re absolutely drunk
With all that shocking ghastly junk.
Oh yes, we know it keeps them still,
They don’t climb out the window sill,
They never fight or kick or punch,
They leave you free to cook the lunch
And wash the dishes in the sink —
But did you ever stop to think,
To wonder just exactly what
This does to your beloved tot?
IT ROTS THE SENSE IN THE HEAD!
IT KILLS IMAGINATION DEAD!
IT CLOGS AND CLUTTERS UP THE MIND!
IT MAKES A CHILD SO DULL AND BLIND
HE CAN NO LONGER UNDERSTAND
A FANTASY, A FAIRYLAND!
HIS BRAIN BECOMES AS SOFT AS CHEESE!
HIS POWERS OF THINKING RUST AND FREEZE!
HE CANNOT THINK — HE ONLY SEES!
‘All right!’ you’ll cry. ‘All right!’ you’ll say,
‘But if we take the set away,
What shall we do to entertain
Our darling children? Please explain!’
We’ll answer this by asking you,
‘What used the darling ones to do?
‘How used they keep themselves contented
Before this monster was invented?’
Have you forgotten? Don’t you know?
We’ll say it very loud and slow:
THEY … USED … TO … READ! They’d READ and READ,
AND READ and READ, and then proceed

So please, oh please, we beg, we pray,
Go throw your TV set away,
And in its place you can install
A lovely bookshelf on the wall.
Then fill the shelves with lots of books,
Ignoring all the dirty looks,
The screams and yells, the bites and kicks,
And children hitting you with sticks-
Fear not, because we promise you
That, in about a week or two
Of having nothing else to do,
They’ll now begin to feel the need
Of having something to read.

You watch the slowly growing joy
That fills their hearts. They’ll grow so keen
They’ll wonder what they’d ever seen
In that ridiculous machine,
That nauseating, foul, unclean,
Repulsive television screen!
And later, each and every kid
Will love you more for what you did.”

About the author

ABDERISAK ADAM is an author, blog writer and a PhD candidate in the institution of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Chalmers University of Technology. He is also the owner and webmaster of www.study-habits.com, a website dedicated to the discussion of study techniques in the context of higher education. Adam is the author of a number of publications including 'The Study Guide PRO'. You can connect with him through Google+, Linkedin or by submitting a form.


4 Comments


  1. This is a great strategy for eliminating the distraction that television posses.

  2. I think dats a good advice to tv adicties.

    A time those tricks dont work to some people what do we do in such cases?

  3. very good article.explained well about how it effects the children thinking.

  4. What an awesome poem by Road Dahl! All the negative effects of TV he listed apply both to children AND adults!

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