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The Amazing Effects of a Weekend Without Television and the Internet

The Amazing Effects of a Weekend Without Television and the Internet

Recently, I was overwhelmed with the constant presence of electronic devices in my life. I realized that I could hardly get through an hour, much less a day, without checking my email or Facebook. And than I decided to carry out the experiment and spend the whole weekend without TV, the internet, mobile phone, games and so on. I wanted just to forget about this stuff and try to find the alternative. My friends and I went to the countryside so I have a lot of time to think about my life, my time and my experiment. In the beginning it was extremely hard not to check emails or call somebody. But then I started using this time to think over so many things in my life. That’s what I had in result.

Being uncomfortable without noise in the background

In the old days, there were only three, four, or five channels, which meant you had to go entertain yourself in some way because watching TV was too dull. But, over time the TV has gained more channels, music is easier to get, and video games have become more fun than real life. Bringing up children on TV and nasty after effects can start to appear in later life. For example, kids watch cruel cartoons and movies where the murders, chases, accidents, divorces happen so often that in time, they subconsciously set themselves up to the worst. I think children should believe in fairy tales, miracles, that good defeats evil.

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But unfortunately, there are so many people that feel incredibly uncomfortable in silence. It is not a new thing, but it is far more ingrained and damaging than most people give it credit for. You are going to find out just how bad you have this “no silence” condition when you try going without TV, the Internet, music or video games over a weekend. Just how uncomfortable you become is unclear, but you may be in for a very big shock as you realize just how lonely and uncomfortable you feel.

You may find yourself talking incessantly on the phone, to which people will become annoyed because they have TV to watch, video games to play, Internet the explore and music to listen to. When you do discover just how bad you have this “no silence” condition, it is up to you to start curing yourself. This weekend without TV, the Internet, music or video games could be the wake up you need so that you are no longer hooked on electronic entertainment. It could be holding you back far more than you realize.

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Having nothing to do because it is harder to waste time

This is another big problem you are going to face that is second only to the point made above. The TV, the Internet, music and/or video games are great because they help you waste time without fuss and effort. Without them, you will start to feel as if you have nothing to do. You will start to feel restless or feel time start to drag.

Time drags and you feel bored and restless because you are removed from the time-vampires that are constant electronic entertainment. Your job is to work through these feelings to free yourself from electronic-entertainment reliance. Lose the reliance and you will start to realize other aspects of your life that you have been neglecting, such as planning for your future, your family, your house, your friends, your kids or your health.

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The uncomfortable feeling of having to think

On the Simpsons, someone turns off the TV and Homer says, “Well turn something on, I’m starting to think.” Though they were making a joke, you will find that you do start to think. The things you think about may not be very good. People have a tendency to be very negative about themselves and their experiences when they are thinking alone.

Furthermore, such a long bout of having to think without cessation may also make you realize some things about yourself. You may realize just how little you are doing with your life, or just how long ago it was when you played with your pets. One hopes that these realizations will prompt you into action so that you change the way things are going.

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The nights are often the worst

You are probably going to be okay during the day. There are often numerous distractions around the house and outside the house that will help you take your mind off the fact you cannot use your TV, the Internet, music or video games. But, at night it starts to sink in that you have very little to do. It is not that you truly have little or nothing to do; it is just that you are so used to having your electronic entertainment that it has blinded you to the other things you may do.

Actually going the distance needs to be done

If you cannot go a full weekend without TV, the Internet, music and video games then you are in trouble. It means you are far too reliant on electronic entertainment and it means your state of mind is not too healthy. A starting point may be to wean yourself slowly away from the TV, the Internet, music and video games. You can start slow and wean yourself off them over time. Replace them with other, more productive, activities.

Just remember that you are in serious psychological trouble if you cannot go the weekend without your TV, Internet, music and video games. It means your reliance on electronic entertainment is filling a gap in your life that you are not addressing. It means that you’re trying to find a refuge but do the opposite. Scientists call this disorder the Internet addiction. It also indicates that you have a compulsion–if not an actual addiction to electronic entertainment. It is not as uncommon as you think, as many people have a legitimate Facebook addiction.

Featured photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/marcelograciolli/ via flickr.com

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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

Boundaries are limits

—they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

1. Self-Awareness Comes First

Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

  • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
  • When do you feel disrespected?
  • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
  • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
  • When do you want to be alone?
  • How much space do you need?

You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

2. Clear Communication Is Essential

Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

Sample language:

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  • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
  • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
  • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
  • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
  • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
  • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
  • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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Final Thoughts

Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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