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Stuff…. Things you just can’t possibly live without. Oooh Boy, did we have a lot of it, and we couldn’t live without it, but before we get to that, let me tell you a story of how we decided to say goodbye to the TV, the first real goodbye of our journey…
We had a nice apartment in the center of our city, 4 bedrooms, nice kitchen, a balcony facing a huge grass area. In the living room, the center piece was, of course, the sofa facing the big flat screen TV with the speakers and stereo next to it. The TV was great, it was always on, keeping a steady flow of white noise coming into our ears, so we didn’t get “bored” (God forbid that we were to be left alone with our own minds right?).
It began as a small itch, just a thought: Why is the TV always on? Mindless breakfast TV, dumb quiz programs at night, maybe even a movie we didn’t really want to see….
Niki said it one day: “I think we should get rid of the TV…..” Ohhh the panic set it, get rid of the TV?
To be completely honest with you, it didn’t happen straight away, we thought about it for at couple of weeks, and then talked about it again – We didn’t get rid of it, but we did do something powerful – We took down the TV, and we moved the entire setup into another room, in that room we threw an incredibly bad air mattress on the floor. From now on, our living room was TV FREE ZONE!
Quickly the living room turned into a different room, the furniture got moved, they now invited the user for conversation, reading or playing a board game. The room felt bigger because we no longer needed an entire wall just for entertainment, we now entertained each other instead of being entertained by moving pictures.
We started talking more, we started getting and sharing new and interesting ideas. We became more productive in our daily routines, and life in general just seemed more interesting. But we didn’t actually stop watching television…
Now it was simply a conscious choice to do so. Every time we wanted to watch television, we had to consciously go into a different room, we had to bring pillows to make ourselves comfortable (that mattress was really bad) and we only did it when we knew that something we actually wanted to see was on.
The TV was now turned back into something special, something that made sense to our lives, something just as important as a book, a conversation or something equally interesting. It was no longer some mindless, time consuming, brainwashing tool just sitting there waiting for us to turn it on.
We never used it much after moving it, maybe once every 14 days or so, we really never missed it, and to this day we still don’t. Now when I walk into a room and a TV is on I can’t help but to look at what’s on, I can’t help to notice the stupid music used, the bad commercials, the mindless canned laughter and the cinematic tricks they use to keep your attention on it.
Hotel rooms – When we stay at hotels and they have TV’s we have an arrangement, almost like a mutual understanding that it’s cool to just turned it on, crash in the beds and binge watch mindless stuff for hours on end. This way we satisfy our needs the few times every year we sleep in hotels.
We don’t miss it though, getting rid of our TV has been one of the most important steps we have ever taken in our journey of exploring what happiness means to us, it started the whole conversation, it rebooted our brains, and we were able to have great ideas again, and we were able to actually turn them into reality.
Do you want your dreams to become reality?
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