5 reasons why I watch TV series (and feel guilty about it)

Every week, there is one day when I really feel like doing nothing. Nothing what so ever. It’s mostly about avoiding all human contact as much as possible. I’ve tried to fight it for a long time, but now I am just learning to accept it.

This day usually starts with me waking up late. The night before I get to bed with the idea that tomorrow will not be a busy day, just a couple of tasks to clear on my to do list and after it I am free as a bird. But the morning comes and I wake up late. The tasks should have either been done and are not, so I need to attend them, or are not urgent and can be re-scheduled. I take about an hour or two to clear the urgency and then ten minutes for rescheduling.

And then the day is wide open. I usually feel drained by this time in the day when it’s already noon. I take a break for eating and watch “an episode” of something which usually turns into two hours of watching TV. The next thing is that I feel guilty about spending my time like this and I start reading something smart, usually non-fiction. It is really hard to follow the ideas but I keep on trying until I realize once again that I am not following the lines for a couple of pages. So I start watching TV. By now it’s about the start of the evening. I cancel plans for gym, take my phone in bed and give in to watching TV series until I fall asleep. Now, I hate this routine more than I hate talking about fashion and I am quite far from embracing it.

One of my smartest friends encouraged me to let it be. This is what I do for relaxation. Maybe I need watching the series in order to relax and be productive the rest of the time. I need to say this, I love this thought process: I work hard, I need to relax, movies/series relax me, so I deserve watching some. But when the day comes, it doesn’t feel like something I need to do. Rather, it feels like I should be stronger than this and do something else I enjoy. The problem with something else I enjoy is that I need to move to make it happen, while watching series is a completely numbing experience: I lay in there, paying attention to the activities done by characters I learn to like.

Five reasons why I watch the TV series instead of using my time for a better cause:

  1. I need to refill my energy: I do need to relax and zoom out on reality every once in a while, because when I am active in society I am really trying to be present with the people I meet and the tasks I need to complete and this consumes tons of energy;
  2. I have the capacity to make time for it: I work more intensely from Monday to Thursday, when my day starts before 8 am and ends at about 10 pm. I work during the weekends as well, not as intensely, but there is always something on my to do list that needs attending. I am having the luxury to plan my own time, which is something I struggled with in the last two years but which I prefer, so I am open to paying the price (this price includes tons of decision making, being aware most of the time, setting up systems to support monitoring and evaluating productivity);
  3. I get attached to the characters: now this is a little extreme and I am aware it’s not really ok, but at times I really miss Gilmore girls or Friends. I need to see them, even if for only a couple of minutes.
  4. It is a controlled environment, thus it is stable: I live with uncertainties, as we all do. Things happen in life, some which we wished were happening, some which we hoped will never happen. Reality is built moment by moment. The series are basically already constructed, thus the uncertainty there is reduced to none. It happens what it happens and one can watch it from afar.
  5. I like to learn how other people live their lives: I guess that somewhere deep down, I believe that the series are written by people who show the viewer another/various ways to live life and make decisions. In some cases, the expected happens as a result of the decision making process. In others, the unexpected happens, but then there is another plot when “justice” is restored and the thing which was supposed to happen in the first place is finally happening.

It used to be much more watching TV series than it is at the moment. My feelings towards this activity are mixed, but slightly more positive, as I am trying to fight the urges less and less. It may be that, with time, this habit will be less and less practiced. So, it is quite clear that I am watching series though I think I should spend my time doing something else. For the moment, the something else I need to do doesn’t feel pressurizing or interesting enough or it can be done at a different time.

Does this sound familiar to anyone else? How are you coping with this? Is there something in your experience I can learn from? Thank you for leaving your thoughts in the comment section below!

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