As I mentioned, my wife and I got rid of our bedroom television. It was the single biggest step we took toward improving rest and intimacy in our bedroom. And because of our experience, I hope that you’ll strongly consider making the same decision.
What we think about first in our day and what we think about last really matters. Every morning begins with a clean slate and brand-new opportunities. We would be wise to think carefully about whether we want television producers to decide what thoughts to fill our minds with as we start our day. The evening provides valuable opportunity to meditate and assess our day. Unfortunately, many people sacrifice this opportunity for the sake of televised entertainment.
Not having a television in the bedroom also encourages getting more and better sleep. We know that Americans, on average, watch an incredible 35.5 hours of television per week, and this shows us how hard it is for us to turn off the TV at any point in the day, including bedtime. Not only does television in the bedroom keep us up later at night, but watching television before bed also disrupts our sleep cycles.
With no television in the bedroom, you and your spouse will have more conversations—some of the most important conversations of your day.Tweet this!
With no television in the bedroom, you and your spouse will have more conversations—some of the most important conversations of your day. In his book Two in a Bed, social scientist Paul Rosenblatt said, “Bedtime is not just about sleep. It is about renewing and maintaining the couple relationship. It can be the one time when partners learn what has been going on with one another, plan, make decisions, deal with disagreements, solve problems, provide necessary information, and put words to their realities.” That kind of bedtime contact is compromised when the television is on.
According to some studies, couples who keep a TV in the bedroom have sex half as often as those who don’t.Tweet this!
According to some studies, couples who keep a TV in the bedroom have sex half as often as those who don’t. Why? Probably because there are over a million things more stimulating for a woman than a man watching ESPN’s SportsCenter.
If you ask me, the opportunity for more intimate encounters should be reason enough to get rid of a bedroom TV. But if it isn’t, here are even more benefits we discovered to eliminating the television from the bedroom:
- less electricity usage
- less space taken up in our room
- more time for reading
- less distraction when getting ready in the morning
- a better example for our kids
Still not quite convinced you should get rid of the TV in your bedroom? Commit to trying it out as a twenty-nine-day experiment. Unplugging the television and moving it into a different room will take fewer than five minutes. There is an end in sight. You’ve got nothing to lose and maybe a whole lot to gain.
Consider the benefits that rest offers: a healthier body, less stress, deeper relationships, opportunity to evaluate life’s direction, a fresh outlook on life, creation of better life balance, and even increased productivity.
Any physician will tell you rest is essential for physical health. When the body is deprived of sleep, it is unable to rebuild and recharge itself adequately. Your body requires rest.
Any athlete will tell you rest is essential for physical training. Rest is needed for muscles to repair themselves and prevent injury. This is true whether you run marathons, pitch baseballs, or climb rocks. Your muscles require rest.
Yesterday’s great thinkers will tell you rest is essential for clear thinking. Ovid, the Roman poet, said, “Take rest; a field that has rested gives a bountiful crop.” Your mind requires rest.
Most religious leaders will tell you rest is essential for spiritual well-being. Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Baha’i (among others) teach the importance of setting aside a period of time for rest. Your soul requires rest.
Many corporate leaders will tell you, similarly, that rest is essential on the job. Rest increases productivity, replenishes attention, solidifies memories, and encourages creativity. Your pursuit of work requires rest.
The wise and knowledgeable tell us the same thing: take time to rest.
A minimalist home is one that promotes peace, serenity, relaxation, calmness, and sleep—rest, in other words. And no place in the home is more necessary to rest than the bedroom.
Excerpted from The Minimalist Home: A Room-by-Room Guide to a Decluttered, Refocused Life. Copyright © 2018 by Joshua Becker. To be published by WaterBrook, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC, on December 18.
JOSHUA BECKER is the founder and editor of Becoming Minimalist, a website dedicated to inspiring others to find more life by owning less. The website welcomes over 1,000,000 readers each month and has inspired millions around the world to consider the practical benefits of owning fewer possessions and given them the practical help to get started. The Minimalist Home: A Room-by-Room Guide to a Declutter, Refocused Life is a following up to his 2016 best-seller (Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Publisher’s Weekly, Amazon, Audible) The More of Less: Finding the Life You Want Under Everything You Own.