Entertainment Kills Progress
Over the years I have spent far more time on entertainment than I would like. Even when I have something to do I sometimes find myself stuck on the couch. I will even think “man I really need to go wash the dishes”, but my body won’t allow me to. Then after sitting on the same spot on the couch for 3 hours watching “Billions” I wonder where the time went. Its like after I start entertainment I find myself unable to stop until I have overeaten. I plan for just 1 episode of a show and then find myself 3-5 episodes deep in the same day.
Why is that?
A lot of it has to do with the fact that I started. Most things in life are pretty easy to continue after you have started. For example, if I can commit to going to the gym for 15 minutes, chances are I will find myself there for 45 minutes. Why? Well I am already at the gym, I may as well work out a little more than 15 minutes. So why do people find it so easy to consume so much entertainment while leaving the hard things undone?
It is a lot easier to start watching a tv show, movie, youtube video, or some other form of entertainment vs doing something like going to the gym or finishing chores. All you have to do is sit down and press a button, there is no preparation and the task is not at all daunting. However, when you go to complete a larger task like a chore you do not say to yourself “I will just wash 5 dishes” or “I will just clean the living room”. Most people immediately look at the entire task and it becomes this huge heavy task, so they just never start.
A successful Youtuber and entrepreneur named Casey Neistat once said “Free time is the enemy of progress”. I am not sure that I completely adopt this idea, but I like the sentiment. Entertainment, free time, and relaxing will always happen, there is no reason to plan for them. Doing these things is the easiest way to get a dopamine release at any time so it WILL happen. What people need to focus on is doing.
If you are focused on doing something, even if its just starting, or just completing a small part of a task you will accomplish so much more. In addition to accomplishing more, you will still get the entertainment time that you wanted, just without planning for it. You will not have to sit on the couch wondering what happened to the day and regretting watching “just one episode”.
A Final Thought
People were made to build, create, and do. Our bodies respond horribly to being idle and inactive. When we sit by and consume so much “stuff” other people have created we are just a passenger in our own lives. We are only in control when we are thinking, acting, and doing.
If you are sitting in your bed at night watching some video on Facebook, you are letting someone else create the set for you life. Lets pretend laying in your bed on your phone is a metaphor for inactivity and all the objects in your room are entertainment. You might be able to look around and choose the things that you see, but none of it is yours. It is not until you get up and decide to do something else that you begin creating your own life.
Get up and do something. The easy shit will happen because its fucking easy.