We’ve all been there. You wake up in a rush, take a quick shower, throw on some clothes, and grab a granola bar on the way out the door to work. You get to work and are slammed with task after task until it’s finally 5pm and you jump in our car to rush home for dinner and household work activities. It seems like we’re always in a rush somewhere and that there is never enough time in the day to get everything done. But what are you truly spending your free time on?
In 2014, the average American spent 2 hours per day on household work activities, such as cutting the lawn, cleaning the house, cooking, and financial management. These tasks are a part of our work day, so let’s add those to the 8 hours spent at our day job, for a total work day of 10 hours. These same people also had 6 hours per day available for leisure activities, which included socializing, exercising, and watching TV. Of those 6 “free” hours, the average person spent nearly half of that time watching TV. That is 3 FREAKING hours of sitting your ass on the couch and staring at a screen, compared to only 2 hours of exercising and 1 hour of socializing. Am I the only one that is stunned by this?!
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the hourly breakdown of an average American looks something like this:
- (8) Hours – Sleep
- (8) Hours – Work
- (2) Hours – Household Activities (lawn maintenance, household cleaning, cooking, financial management)
- (2) Hours – Exercising
- (1) Hour – Socializing
- (3) Hours – Watching TV
To say there is not enough time in the day to get things done, but then to sit and watch 3 hours of TV is ludicrous. There is plenty of time in each day, you just choose to waste it. Instead of watching TV, spend 1 hour of that time reading a book, another hour practicing a new hobby, and the last hour working on a new business idea. Or heck, here is a whole list of activities that can productively supplement your TV time. Congratulations, you just turned 3 unproductive hours into 3 productive hours, and you still have your 2 hours of exercise and 1 hour of socializing. Doing this on a daily basis will have a profound impact on your life, which you will notice almost immediately. I challenge you to scale down and eventually eliminate your “TV time.”
As a side note, of those 24 hours we have each day as seen above, we actually spend 4.7 hours on our phones. So where is that time being taken away from? Are we really “working” productively, or are we checking our Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, etc. every 15 minutes? Are we truly “exercising” for 2 solid hours, or are we sending emails and calendar invites? Are we actually even “watching TV,” or are we just sitting in front of the TV, but have our attention focused on our smartphone screen? As technology continues to become more ingrained in our daily lives, we need to find ways to productively integrate it to the point where we consume it, before it consumes us. I will save this topic for another day.
My Question of the Day: How much time do you spend watching TV every day?
Please respond below in the comments!