I love television and I always have. If you feel the same way, your childhood is also probably filled with memories of your parents and grandparents telling you that you watch way too much TV. It may have taken me around 20 years to finally come around to it, but I think they might be right. Too much television can be a bad thing, and between Netflix
and Hulu, you’re probably indulging way too much. I know, how boring and stodgy. That’s not a fun thing to say and I don’t like saying it, but it’s true. Between adding to the screen time you’re already have with your phone (on average, we get nine hours per day – which seems low tbh) and the amount of time you have sitting in school or at work, shouldn’t your free time be dedicated to… less sedentary activities?
Look, I’m lazy. I’m not saying that I, personally, go for a run instead of marathon watching shows on Netflix, but I’m trying to curb a serious television habit. You may not even realize it’s getting in the way of your every day life, but you’d be surprised. We’re arguably in a new golden age of television, and that’s way exciting. But you know what? Life is long, Netflix isn’t going anywhere, TV can wait. It’s no big deal if you miss watching something right when it comes out. If these nine things are happening to you on the regular, it may be a sign that you need to step away from your TV and do something else.
It's Getting Hard To See The Board At SchoolYou noticing you have to squint more to read far away print. Your eyes get bleary when you drive at night. You typically have okay vision or at least you're able to get by with your contacts or glasses, so what gives? All that screen time is affecting your vision. Your eyes have muscles, believe it or not, and those muscles can fatigue. They need breaks. They can't have a break if your eyeballs are constantly focused on a screen. Eye strain can cause blurred vision, dry eyes, among other side effects. So, if you aren't typically struggling to read far away print or constantly rubbing your eyes, it may be due to excess screen time with your television. Source: iStock
You Plan Your Social Life Around TV ShowsNope, sorry. Can't come over Thursday night, I have to watch Scandal. I love Shondaland, but how lame does that sound? How would you like it if a friend bailed on you for TV? I hear a lot of excuses from people saying they don't have time for other life commitments because they "don't have time." If you have time for several hour blocks during the week in which you *must* be watching the television, then you have time to go work out, take that class, finish writing that book. DVR is a blessing and Hulu is a real life saver when you don't want to walk in to school the next day and be the only one not caught up. It's okay to once in a while stay home to watch something big, but if you're doing it regularly, that's a problem. Source: iStock
You Need To Have The TV On ConstantlyHaving a show running in the background is how you multi-task through life. "It's okay," you'll excuse yourself. "I'm still doing my homework, so I'm technically being productive." Um, okay. Sure. You're only half-way paying attention to both, so how much good are you really doing? I don't mean to be harsh or judgmental, but it's amazing what kinds of excuses we'll whip up to justify behavior we know isn't technically healthy. Do one thing at a time and your ability to get things done is going to sky rocket, I guarantee it. Source: iStock
You Spend Most Of Your Money On Streaming ServicesMuch like Pokemon, you gotta catch them all. If you find that a good chunk of your money is going towards Netflix, Hulu Plus, Amazon Prime, the shows that aren't Prime eligible on Amazon that you can rent, HBOGo, Showtime On Demand, etc. .... that's a problem. You can do what you want with your own money, don't get me wrong, but it adds up over time. If you already have a few streaming services, do you really need the other ones? Even Hulu has an optional Showtime extension. If you're grabbing log-ins for the sheer thrill of being a television connoisseur, you may be watching a little too much for your own good.
You Watch Shows You Don't Even Like That MuchYou do it so you can understand the pop culture references they go with or feel cool that you've seen EVERY EPISODE. And why? Chances are you'll know after a few episodes if this show is going to work for you, and if it doesn't, let it go. Seriously. No one is judging your taste level because you failed to see the appeal of Mad Men or couldn't follow Lost. Who cares? If you're trying to stave off FOMO when it comes to a television show, you're definitely watching too much television. Source: iStock
You Can't Eat Without Watching TVIf you have a television habit that is so ingrained in you that you feel like you can't do that activity if the TV isn't on, that's a little too extra. One popular example is that you can't eat without watching TV. Sure, dinner may become more enjoyable when you're eating it while catching up on your favorite show, but if you feel like you can't do dinner without the TV on, you're way too adjusted to that and you need to step back. Source: iStock
You Feel Genuinely Sad When The Season Is OverYes, it's sad when a season ends... but it's going to come back. If this really does affect your mood, then you're too invested! If it's really making you that bummed out, then you need that break, honestly. Source: iStock
You and Your Friends Talk About TV Characters More Than LifeYou're more invested in characters you ship than your IRL friends. It's totally normal to meet up with a friend who is obsessed with the same show you love and spend a good chunk of time discussing what happened in the latest episode. But if you find yourself talking about TV characters more than you ask your friends about what's going on in their life, that's not cool! It's too much. These characters are fictional! Source: iStock
Even Netflix Is Concerned For Your Well-BeingOh, the infamous "Are you still watching [That Show]?" It's like Netflix is saying, "Sweetie, are you sure you still want to be doing this? Do you want to take a break?" I couldn't find a trigger point at which Netflix pops up this reminder, but I could find plenty of tutorials to disable this feature because everyone on the internet, it seems, is totally upset that Netflix may be judging them. And honestly, how dare Netflix. Isn't that your one job? Still, if Netflix thinks you've fallen asleep or walking out of the room because there's no way that you're *still* watching Orange Is The New Black, it may be time to have a little break. Just a tiny one to go take a walk.