IF YOU HAVE been alarmed by statistics on TV watching, or if you've participated
in TV Turnoff Week and want to make a change,
here are some ideas for altering your television watching habits:
1. Move your television to a location that
is less visible and harder to get to. Maybe even cover it.
2. Spend a week keeping track of all television
viewing in your household. Find out how many hours you spend
per week. This should change the way you think about your "lack
of time" to do the things you want to do.
3. Make certain days "TV-free days."
On Tuesdays and Thursdays, for example, make it a habit to watch
no television at all.
4. Cancel your cable service. Designate
that money for something fun you "don't have the money for."
5. If your children have a television in
their room, get rid of it. The presence of the TV distracts them
from much more constructive activity.
6. Don't be overly concerned about boredom.
In the space of boredom, creativity can bloom and physical activity
becomes more appealing.
7. Have everyone in your household sit
down and decide which programs are worth watching. Then watch
only those programs and as soon as they're over, turn off the
8. Make sure the television is off while
people are eating. This makes for less overeating and more conversation
9. Get chores and homework done before
10. Plan activities that will necessarily
displace television, like Card Game Fridays. Have a regular family
11. Decide ahead of time how much television
you are allowing per day. This will make you more selective and
free up a great deal of time to do all the things you "don't
have time for."
12. Put the remote in some remote place.
13. Do not allow any eating while the television
is on. Make this the new policy.
14. Cook with one of your children or your
spouse. Make it a way to connect and an alternative to television
15. Try planning some of these alternative activities. They automatically
displace television watching.
16. Avoid substituting the computer for
television watching. Try to substitute more physical activities.