How Are You Spending Your Time?

Apr 29, 2024

I recently learned that the average American watches television for 294 minutes a day. That’s almost five hours! I was shocked, so I did some Googling, wondering if what I had heard was accurate. It was. Holy smokes.

Then I remembered that I used to do this, too.

I would start with the Today Show for background noise and to hear what was happening in the news while getting dressed for work. Then, when I got home from work, the TV would go on again until I fell asleep to Johnny Carson. This went on for decades.

At the same time, like everyone else, I had a mile-long list of things I wanted to do “when I had more time.” You know, like exercise, eating better food, dropping 10 pounds, reading those books stacked next to the couch, learning how to weave, and spending time with friends and family.

When I realized how much energy and time TV was taking, I decided to make a change in my life. I canceled cable and went cold turkey. Everyone thought I was insane.

In hindsight, this decision was a pivotal moment in my life. Virtual Assistants frequently ask me how I created a successful business, and I realize the first step was turning off the TV.

By turning off the television, I took charge of where I placed my attention and decided how I wanted to invest my time.

So, instead of watching Sex in the City reruns, I did this:

  1. I started taking care of my body. I began a practice of walking four miles every day, eating good food, and getting enough sleep.
  2. I started listening to country music again. I built up a playlist on Pandora that I played while I worked. Listening to my favorite songs made me feel relaxed and more productive.
  3. I started listening to and reading books that changed how I looked at life. I became more positive, optimistic, and happier. The books helped me think about what was possible and stop worrying about everything that might happen.

We all need downtime. I get that. And as someone whose brain is zooming at 1,000 miles an hour all day, I need to unplug, too. But lots of TV is not the answer.

Instead, invest time in finding ways to relax that will leave you feeling successful about your goals and aspirations.

Believe it or not, focusing your attention on things that bring you joy is probably the single most important thing you can do to build a thriving business.


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