I recently watched Avengers: Endgame, if you haven’t watched it yet, you should. It’s a lovely movie.
It was also my 3rd for the year and only my 6th since Jan 2018. A far cry from where I started when I first started cutting out noise.

This is a short post which contains 2 parts, my rules for watching(i.e not watching) movies and TV shows and, an app that I’ve been using for the past few days that has been super useful.

Rules for not watching movies and TV Shows

Over the past 5 years, I’ve done my best to reduce the amount of passive content I consume and to be more aware of what I’m feeling at each point in time.

I would consider this post an extension of my previous post on the topic of passive content, where I promised I’d write a part 2, it just took me a long time to internalize and understand some truths about this.

Why is passive content bad? I have 2 fundamental answers for this.

  1. When I passively consume content, I am not aware of how I’m feeling or whether I’m enjoying what I’m consuming. I think this is important, one of the things I’m trying to do is to try to maximize the amount of time I spend doing things that I enjoy and/or add value to my life.
  2. It’s too transient, ephemeral, as a result, it reduces my ability to consume non-passive content which I cannot be distracted while consuming.

At the end of 2012, I stopped watching TV shows, mid-2018, I modified it to not watching new TV Shows and instead only watching shows/episodes that I have already watched and enjoy. Applying the lindy effect on a personal level to things that I am already aware of.
It has been useful, it has (obviously) increased the time I spend watching passive content, but, when I do such an activity, I am enjoying the activity by selection.

With regards to movies, I have a simple rule that I started following at the beginning of 2018:

Only watch a movie if someone else books a ticket for you, don’t pay them back unless you liked the movie
Only watch movies at theatres

This puts the onus onto somebody else to drag me to a movie and risk that I won’t pay them back. I know I sound like a cheapskate, but, I couldn’t care less.

App Recommendation

I recently stumbled upon an app called Daywise and I think it’s super well designed. I wanted to create an app like this for myself, but, never got around to it. Their website indicates that this is backed by Duke University in some way. I’ve had a great experience using it so far and it has reduced the amount of time I spend on my phone and the no of times I get distracted by it.
So, do check that out if that’s of interest to you.

Thank you for reading

Sainath