Cutting the Cord to Cable

 

For years I would look at my cable bill and grow frustrated at how much I was paying for services that I did not use enough to justify the wasteful cost. As it was, I was starting to feel like TV was consuming too much of my valuable free time that I always slotted for more interesting and valuable activities.  I longed for the time to read those books that I kept thinking I'd get to read or even the Sunday paper that would sit at the foot of my sofa for days waiting for me to find an hour to pour through it. I wondered when will I ever find the time to learn another foreign language. The list goes on and the hours are few in a day.  Those few, valuable, free hours I was wasting staring thoughtlessly at the TV watching shows I didn't even have an interest in.

Earlier this year I removed my cable TV services, but kept my internet connection. I found that I wasn't watching TV live and used my DVR pretty much exclusively. Hulu aired a lot of the shows I was already watching that were saved to my DVR, so I felt there was a lot of redundancy and costs that I could cut and not miss out on the few shows I enjoyed. Since I already had subscription services to Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime - my watching habits didn't have to change too much. I will warn you that it can be a bit of a cultural readjustment after being raised to watch live TV though, but in time you'll adjust and find solutions and apps that will let you watch pretty much whatever you wanted to watch on live TV. There are many great streaming devices to choose from, but I use Amazon Fire TV in my living room and another for my bedroom. They sync with each other so you can start watching something in the living room and move to the bedroom to continue watching if desired. I downloaded free apps that let me watch the Olympics this summer, live presidential debates, and other major live events you might worry about missing out if you cut the cord.  A digital antenna which you can buy anywhere for $20 will provide you live access to you local stations. Premium services such as HBO and Showtime to name a couple allow you to subscribe and unsubscribe easily and as frequently as you wish which is another great way to manage costs when you're finding that those services don't have anything interesting that month. There are other add on apps such as Sling TV that lets you live stream CNN, ESPN, and many other channels starting at $20/month. Just be mindful not to get so many services that you're back to paying the exorbitant monthly costs you've been yearning to escape by cutting the cord. With a little reflection and thought, you can have a customized TV plan you want and not the one the major cable provider throws at you.  You'll reclaim your valuable time so that you watch what you want to watch and hopefully use the regained time to do things for yourself and with your family and friends. Life is short so don't spend a majority of it passing time in front of the TV watching actors live scripted, fake reality TV lives - instead live life to the fullest in reality - our reality.

 

Some helpful links:

Cut Cable Today

NYT: The Definitive Guide to Cord-Cutting in 2016, Based on Your Habits