Confession: I’m addicted to TV.
At the end of 2016, Jamie and I admitted to each other that we watch too much TV. It was hard to say out loud because we like TV and we know that after admitting something out loud comes hard work and accountability. “I don’t want to give this up” was my first thought, and boy did that prove to me that something needed to change.
We’ve become accustomed to a lifestyle that involves eating all of our meals in front of the TV, keeping the TV on at all times (I am also addicted to background noise), and staying up too late watching “just one more episode.” I get way too personally invested in TV shows, to the point where I believe that I’m apart of the family or group of people. Crazy, I know.
Over the past 6 months, I’ve been reading The Celebration of Discipline with a sweet friend and last month I read this paragraph below, and it stopped me in my tracks.
“Reject anything that is producing an addition in you. Learn to distinguish between a real psychological need, like cheerful surroundings, and an addition. If you have become addicted to television, by all means sell your set or give it away. Simplicity is freedom, not slavery. Refuse to be a slave to anything but God.”
I want to create a foundation for our family that is full of eye contact, trying new things and laughing together, instead of watching the next best TV show like a zombie. I want our future children to understand the importance of being together, not just watching TV at night because it’s easy, but truly being together as a family. I want to cultivate a foundation of intentionality, not laziness or conforming to the ways of the world.
If I’m honest, our addiction to TV is hindering our marriage. It’s hindering us from being intentional with one another, giving our full attention and asking meaningful questions. It’s hindering us from being intimate with one another. I refuse to be a slave to anything that is going to put a block in our marriage, so we decided right then and there that there needed to be a change. We wouldn’t go crazy and “sell our set or give it away” but instead we would choose little by little progress. We committed to one week each month with NO tv.
Here’s what we learned from our first week of no TV:
– We got in bed earlier and spent time reading before going to sleep
– We were more willing and excited to spend time with people that we love
– We had way more fun together (dance parties, card games, bed jumping and evening walks)
– We ate dinner at our dining room table with no distractions
I don’t ever want to stop growing. I want to create moments of growth in us as individuals and opportunities to stretch our marriage to do things that are hard and don’t feel normal to the world. We’re currently in our March week of no tv and it has been wonderful. Tonight we’re planning to go to our local nursery to pick out some plants for our backyard!