We all have bad habits, habits we are afraid of sharing or are embarrassed about. My TV addiction is that for me. Growing up I was allowed very limited access to the TV, unless it was sports, the news, or Jeopardy. I never had a TV in my bedroom, and grew very accustomed to reading myself to sleep in bed throughout college and my early twenties.
When my boyfriend (now husband) moved in together around the age of 25, was the first time I had a TV in my bedroom. Mostly we would watch sports and ESPN before bed, but I got used to the habit of ‘vegging out’ in front of the TV in order to get me to relax.
Said husband started traveling a lot more once we moved to NYC, and my TV habit evolved as I had more alone time before bed. I discovered Bravo and the Real Housewives of Everywhere, and suddenly I was a full-blown TV addict. As if all the Real Housewives weren’t enough, Bravo got smart and slowly added Below Deck, Southern Charm, and Vanderpump Rules to the mix. Then I was missing out on my co-workers conversations every Tuesday about Bachelor Nation… and so I had to queue that up as well!
When I moved back to San Francisco after NYC and decided to focus on working for myself full time, my TV addiction grew. I found it difficult to self-motivate and NOT turn on the TV each morning. Add to that a knee surgery which kept me on the couch for a few months, and I ‘treated’ myself to a Netflix account where I could finally watch Gilmore Girls and The Office and most of the shows I missed in my teens.
See? This is shameful. I can’t believe I am writing this down because it sounds SO PATHETIC!
How I made my TV Addiction work for Me
But I promise there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Or maybe just a glimmer. What was it? Re-discovering sewing!
I have sewn more in the past 12 months that I have sewn in the 10 years prior. I am on track to make 30 items this year! 30 ITEMS OF CLOTHING!! How could I possibly have been so productive, with a 1 year old, and STILL WATCH TV?
I decided that I can only watch TV after Marina goes to bed, or while I’m sewing!
It may seem like a no brainer, but discovering that I could stream Netflix or whatever from my computer, which is right next to my sewing machine, has been a revelation for me. I often listen to business podcasts when I sew which is fantastic for my brain, but I can’t always give that kind of concentration to what I’m listening to, as I should be concentrating on my sewing project.
In the past 6 months, I have watched Downtown Abbey Seasons 1-3, Big Little Lies Season 2, various Bravo programming, and am now halfway through re-watching Gossip Girl. Being in my sewing room alone for hours can do a lot of damage to your mental well-being, so I’ve actually found it helpful to watch TV while I sew, to keep me company. I realize that sounds just as pathetic as my TV addiction but hey, I’m human.
The result has made me want to sew more. I want to start new projects, and be more intentional with what I watch. I now pretty much only watch things that have had great reviews (or are the Housewives) and I have completely dropped all other reality TV such as The Bachelor franchise, which requires I be on the network’s timing.
The downsides of TV addictions have always been that it’s a mind-numbing pastime that takes the viewer’s time away from doing other things. And so… I solved that right? Right? Or is this just the addiction talking? ;)