6 Things to Do Tonight Instead of Watching Netflix

 
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Ask me my plans any given day of the week and the answer will involve a glass of wine and whatever newest binge is in my Netflix (or Hulu) queue. 

Like, guys. I love television. And the readily-available on demand nature of television and media nowadays is like my literal dream come true.  

Except when it isn’t. Because I’ve noticed a serious drop in productivity, happiness and general willingness to get off the couch most days. I come home, immediately turn the tv on, and there I sit until bedtime. Sure, usually I’m on my computer too but I’m not getting much done beyond endless scrolling. 

So lately I’ve been trying to push myself to do other things beyond sitting in a stupor in front of the tv. And it’s hard, honestly. But the days that I do,  I find myself feeling so much more energized, productive and inspired. 

In that spirit, here are a few things you can do that don’t involve commercial breaks (ha, as if commercials are a thing anymore).  

Read a book. 

I love reading. For the longest time, books were like my whole identity. And then streaming television hit the mainstream and my attention span disintegrated.

I have so many unread books on my shelf, and I keep buying more, but they just sit there mocking me as I round out the third consecutive hour of my latest Buffy binge.  

I’ve started literally forcing myself to turn the tv off, pick up a book and read it. Sometimes it works really well and I read an entire book in one day. Other times it works for a few hours and then the book sits on my coffee table for 6 weeks. It’s all about balance.  

Start a project.  

It’s finally time to tackle that DIY project you’ve had in the back of your mind for a while! Whether it’s as simple as hemming some pants you bought or if you’re taking on an entire DIY room makeover, the feeling of accomplishment that comes from making things with your hands is so much more rewarding than watching the Gilmore Girls finale for the 12th time (and usually there’s fewer tears). 

Work on your side hustle.

You know you have one. Or want to start one. Shut off the tv and get to work making your vision become a reality! Unplug and really focus on writing, designing, creating or whatever else lights you up.  

Take a walk.

Spring has sprung and it’s gorgeous outside. Take a walk, get some fresh air and get active. You will feel so much better than just sitting on the couch all night. You don’t have to do serious cardio, just take a stroll down your street or explore a new area of your city. You never know what you might find! 

Connect with friends and loved ones. 

This is vital, especially if you live alone. Maybe it’s just my introvert tendencies (and tbh the fact that I moved to a new city and all of my friends are scattered around the country) but I can go ages without doing things with other people.  

Plan a date night with your significant other, go out to dinner with your girlfriends or FaceTime your parents to catch up. 

Cook a meal. 

Maybe it’s just me but I feel like constant Netflix binges go hand in hand with eating a sad microwave burrito on your living room floor. Take a break from the Grubhub monotony and actually cook dinner. 

Find a recipe on Pinterest (or get an old family favorite from your mom!), buy fresh ingredients and get cooking. It can be fun solo or a great thing to do with friends or your partner. Plus it tastes all the more delicious knowing you made it from scratch.

Light a candle, dig out real plates and actually use your table for something other than a mail collector.