By Zuko Komisa
In 2018, people have wider access when it comes to the things they wish to watch, which has made it easy for people to just pick what they want to watch get it over and done with quickly. The rise of the internet and convenience has resulted in people spending more time binge-watching content of their choice, at their own time and pace.
How did we find ourselves here?
Binge watching is not an entirely new thing, South Africans have been binge watching soapie repeats way before the advent of Netflix and other streaming services made it to the interwebs. The long hours spent catching up seemed to be a hit with many broadcasters.
Are there risks involved with watching hours of Television?
The truth with every good television series is that in keeping you watching for a long time, they will stimulate you with endless cliffhangers. They want you to want to stay up for that one or two more episodes. A sad reality with binge watching or obsessive watching of television is how addicts are prone to other addictions, such as a dependency on junk food and alcohol, getting overwhelmed with feelings of depression and loneliness., You start losing interest in hygiene, you ignore friends and family and you deliberately deprive yourself of quality sleep.
Watching many hours of television doubles the risk of premature death compared to those who watch less. This extreme consumption of television is coupled with a dramatic increase over time of risky health issues such as diabetes, cancer, heart disease regardless of exercising regularly.
A generation that doesn’t read
The time spent watching season upon season of your ‘favourite’ show is time taken away from the beautiful gift of reading. The multitude of literature collected over many generations is slowly losing its essence in this day and age. We are faced with a crisis of a generation that is distracted by images on Instagram, comments on Twitter and what’s new on Netflix.
All is not lost
As we progress with the times, we must be conscious of the way our bodies work, this while we jump on new waves of doing things. To be able to responsibly binge watch you need to set parameters for the time you spend with your television. If you must binge, make it healthier by standing, stretching, and taking mini-breaks for physical activity.
How you release the chemical dopamine in your brain plays a role in your overall health and wellness. Binge watching gives your body a natural, internal reward of pleasure that results in you continuing to binge for unnatural hours. It’s good to diversify your leisure for the benefit of your health and sanity.