How to Treat TV Addiction

TV addiction doesn’t get as much flak as phone or gaming addiction or gambling because most people consider the television a necessity as much as a refrigerator or a cooking stove. But TV addiction afflicts people of all ages and it influences that way we think about various topics and how we deal with other people without even acknowledging it. Is it possible to live without watching your favorite drama?

Keep a daily log of how many hours you spend watching TV. This is the best way to determine how much time you spend in front of a television. Until confronted with the evidence, most people with addiction will not acknowledge that they have a problem.

This will also allow you to find a pattern and perhaps determine the triggers. List down all the shows you’ve been following then group them into categories based on genre. Tally the hours you spend on each show daily then total the number of hours you spend on them weekly.

Find the triggers. Addictions don’t suddenly appear without a reason. There is always a cause and several triggers. This could be anything from chronic pain, another form of addiction, stress, and other factors. Some people are predisposed to addictive behaviors, but this is not set in stone. If you keep a daily log, you should also include a list of other activities you did that day and your general mood.

Cut down the number of shows you watch daily. The first step to tackling the problem is to slowly wean yourself from television. Determine other ways for you to access television shows such as cable subscriptions, streaming, etc. Start by eliminating some of these then picking only a few shows that you like most. By eliminating the easy ways to watch TV shows, you can make them less accessible.

Find substitutes or other activities. You will definitely suffer from withdrawal symptoms, but you can take your mind off of it by keeping yourself busy. Surely you have other interests besides TV shows. Perhaps it is time to pick up on that old hobby you neglected or find a new activity such as working out, reading, walking your dog, etc.

Set a timer and follow your schedule. To avoid idle hours when you are most vulnerable to giving in to temptation, you should fill your day with other activities besides school or work. These activities should help you relax and de-stress.

If you can follow this schedule, you can reward yourself later by watching an episode or two of your favorite show. But remember, you also need to limit how much time you spend watching TV. You can change this target weekly until you achieve your goal.

Think about the benefits. TV shows should just be for fun and learning, but your life shouldn’t revolve around them. It’s not like you will get a reward be religiously following everything on TV. There is so much in life to enjoy so why waste your hours sitting there watching other people live their lives.