SO… I’ve had this one TV in my living room that I’ve owned for nearly 10 years.
From living in Stamford, CT, to Greenwich, to the Upper West Side, to two apartments in San Francisco, this one TV has gone with me everywhere.
I never felt the urge to buy a newer TV. But I know over the past 10 years, I’ve clocked thousands of hours on it (estimating but I’m probably not wildly off). From my favorite shows that defined a lot of my mental model of life including Star Trek TNG, Madmen, Breaking Bad, Billions, and of course Game of Thrones was watched on this TV.
And yet, a couple of weeks ago, I dismantled the TV and stuck it in a closet. I was done. Why?
In my continued quest to get more proactive in my life, and while I was writing out my thoughts in my Unstoppable Sunday pause and reflect session — I realized that the TV was sticking out a sore thumb of time suck in my life and I needed to get rid of it.
In it’s place, I put in a dedicated iPad so I can listen to music, and in the giant white wall that was now exposed with the absence of my beloved TV — I put up an Inspiration Wall.
You get 24 Hours in the day
The greatest equalizer of all of mankind is time. We all get 24 hours in the day. You take out 8 hours for sleep, 8 hours for work, and 2 hours for family time, you’re still left with SIX hours in the day.
As high productivity as I am, even on my best weeks I was still loosing hours to my TV. And while there is something to be said about down time and entertainment — there wasn’t anything huge I was getting out of my time on TV.
This index card I used in a prior Unstoppable episode describes this dynamic perfect. We all know where those SIX hours are going. It’s TV. It’s idle time on our Facebook feeds. It’s time we could be spending for more proactive time with family or time spent improving ourselves from active learning or building our dreams.
If you’re like most people, the TV serves as a central pivot point in your living area. Everything is oriented around it and even if you entire family is sitting in this space — its designed for them all to be oriented around the TV.
There’s something special about that, and with this giant gaping space now available with my TV being gone, I saw it as an opportunity to use that space in a more proactive way.
The first thing I did was to set up an old iPad I had as a permanent music device connected to my stereo system. This made it that there could be background noise or even active listening — whether I was alone or I had people over.
This also made it where I could be doing OTHER things even while my space was being filled with Youtube videos that are educational, music that I love or calming music for meditation.
But there was still the giant white space.
And so, I took the opportunity to turn the empty white wall into an Inspiration Wall. I bought one of the canvas art we have in our Unstoppable Store for inspiration walls. I put in a new plant. I put in some picture albums (yes I still have them) from an important part of my life.
Very quickly, the dynamics shifted. My living room went from being a place of active TV watching to a place of real conversation. To a place of self reflection, of relaxation, and most importantly to a place of conscious living – vs – passive watching of mindless entertainment.
In my continued quest to lead a more proactive and unstoppable life, and in my continued quest to help others become more proactive in their lives — this small (yet huge) change to remove my TV turned into having a massive impact in my life that I felt almost immediately in the past couple of weeks.
How are you spending your SIX hours? What are the time sucks in your life? Take stock, remove them, and double down on the things that help you grow instead — whether it be an inspiration wall that constantly reminds you of your goals or a music area that helps you create a space of fun rather than idle watching.
Remember, everyone needs a strategy. Yours needs to be unstoppable. If you want help switching to living a more proactive life, be sure to download our FREE Life Planning Guide.