According to the latest statistics, an average American watches over four hours of TV a day. That’s two months of continuous, 24 hour a day viewing per year. See our previous interview with Cirro over just that subject. The situation is similar when it comes to different age groups – children, adults, the elderly – it seems that we all love watching TV. We are not saying that people should stop watching TV completely, but doing so in moderation will make your life bigger and better.
Start a New Business or Side Gig
There are over 29 million small businesses in the United States alone. The advances in technology today have made it easier than ever to create new revenue streams. Information about your niche is everywhere: websites, blogs, YouTube, podcasts, you name it. You can spend that T.V. watching time researching a new revenue stream, and also use that time to actually create it. Will my business ever make money? We can’t answer that… but we guarantee watching T.V. won’t.
Learn a new skill
The most successful individuals never stop learning. The good news is that it’s never too late to learn a new skill. Surely, watching TV may be a more peaceful activity, but the benefits you get from learning a new skill are tremendous. In addition, the feeling you experience becoming knowledgeable about something you weren’t before, is priceless. It leads to a sense of accomplishment and purpose in life. This new skill can help you improve your abilities at your current job, a new venture, or can be unrelated to either. The point is you are growing, not shrinking.
Learn how to invest with index funds, ETFs, stocks etc.
Let’s be clear – almost every person wants to earn more money. This is quite natural because money significantly affects the quality of life. According to many experts, investing in stocks, ETFs, index funds and other similar vehicles, is one of the most convenient and predictable ways to make profit. Learning how to invest the money you do have means you make more money in the long run without actually having to trade your time for money. Once again, the only thing that you will need is free time to learn, and by ignoring your TV for a while, you should be able to get the time you need.
Get a part time job
You could use this time to get a part-time job to raise money for something you need. Perhaps you are wanting to start a business and need a few thousand to get started, or maybe you have a plan to retire early and you realize how much more powerful your money is now, than later, due to compounding. Whatever the reason, you could use that T.V. watching time to work for somebody else, at least temporarily, to raise funds for whatever need you may have.
Enjoy your Hobby
Hobbies may not expand your wallet, but they can expand your mind and give you greater joy than the T.V. Do you love hiking, or photography, or gardening? Try putting down the remote and focusing more on your hobby… which really means focusing more on yourself. Many times this leads to you becoming an expert in this field and your hobby turns into a new career. And work you love doing isn’t really work at all.
Spend it with your Family and Friends.
Think of all the time you could have with your loved ones, in a more meaningful way. Try turning off the T.V. and doing something else with them instead. Meet a friend at a coffee shop, play Scrabble with your wife, and on and on.
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C.J. is the blogger behind the Vow of Practicality. “Let’s grow your wealth, increase your productivity, and maximize your happiness.”