A Simple, Sure Way to Save Time and MoneyPosted on Apr 5, 2011 | 0 comments
Question: What does the average American do more than anything else?
Easy Canadians, you can post your jokes in the comments if you like.
Seriously, any ideas?
I'll give you some hints.
It's not breathing, obviously breathing is #1.
If you avoid doing this it will save your family a ton of time and money, as well as a bunch of aggravation.
Americans do this 10 times more now than they did in 1970.
Companies spend well over $400 billion dollars a year making sure your family does this every day.
Any Answers? Guesses? Thoughts?
Let's see if you're right.
Americans spend up to a 1/3 of their day Viewing Advertisements. It's true, the average American views up to 5,000 ads a day. To put it in perspective, we only breathe about 17,000 times a day and we don't watch TV in our sleep so actually ads and breathing are even closer than these numbers suggest.
I don't really want to get into the hows and whys of modern advertising. If these guys are continually spending over 400,000,000,000.00 dollars a year just to make sure you and I spend a couple bucks on Coca-Cola and a new set of tires, then what they do must really work. I just want to know how I can avoid it. My family is trying to quit our jobs and travel the world forever, the last thing I need are targeted messages invading my brain and tempting me to burn my escape fund 5,000 times a day. I don't want to shop. I don't want to buy a bunch of crap. I don't want to get be the guy on the bus everyone is staring at because he has been singing the Big Bob's Discount Auto Supply jingle for the past 5 minutes.
Just let me keep my time and money so Heidi and I can work on this blog and take the kids to Costa Rica. That's not too much to ask, is it?
We put together a few tips on how we all can avoid those pesky, repetitive ads and save time and money in the process.
Kill your TV
Cable is Old. If you have a computer, an xbox, an iphone or any other wireless device, you can live without cable TV. We switched over to Netflix and now have live streaming video via our laptop and DVDs that can be mailed to the house. Many people use Netflix, but I wonder how many consider the true savings. Sure, there is the financial savings, Direct TV was costing us $65 a month where as Netflix is only $8.99, so that is $672 dollars a year saved there alone. But Netflix is also ad free, so we avoid all the normal television advertising.
It's amazing how quickly the lack of commercials can change your habits. I drove by a movie theater today and had no idea what most of the listed movies were about. I hadn't even heard of them. For me, that is a first. Think of how much time and brainpower I can devote to the things I really love now that my mind is less flooded with so many 30 second must see ads.
Stop Being Such a Fan
I skipped the Super Bowl this year. I couldn't do it. It is the longest, most drawn out event in the history of the world and the amount of ad time is insane. It's not football, it's a commercial.
Look, sports are huge for me. For my whole family actually. But recently I realized something: It doesn't make any difference how one of my teams does. If they lose, I get up and go to work. If they win, I get up and go to work. My life stays exactly the same as it did before. And so . . . I gave it up.
Sure, we still go to events and catch a game now and then, but professional sports no longer dominates our days like it used to. Now, we focus on our kids and our goals; not on the trades, contracts and statistics of people that have nothing to do with us. As well, I don't have to continue to watch the same beer commercials every time a team scores. They just get really old and I'm comfortable with my beer choices already anyway.
Don't Turn on the Radio, Buy an Iphone Instead!
I love a long road trip, especially at night. On all our family road trips, the radio has always kept me going.
But now I have an Iphone.
Forget the radio, now I can get whatever I want with crystal clear reception and a lot less commercial talk. Whatever comes through my radio now is ad free. I use Pandora for music, follow multiple podcasts and often turn on Rick Steve's Audio Europe when I get the travel bug which is pretty much all the time. I know the Iphone and its brothers and sisters are pricey gadgets, but you can get get your phone, television, movies, music and pretty much everything else for one price. It does save you money if you use it well, and the time away from ads is amazing on those long road trips.
Get Out and Stay Out
You really want to go ad free? Just Get Out. Get out of the cities, the house, the car, the office. Nature doesn't have any ads. The great outdoors is not trying to sell you anything. You and your family can do a million things tomorrow that have nothing to do with marketing ploys and target audiences. Just find a trail, a beach, a mountain and get going.
And if you're really adventurous, travel to some place where you don't know the language. You finally get a chance to to take things at face value. It's much easier to say no to Snake Bile in China if you don't have 5,000 ads a day telling you how good it is for your sex drive.
There are a lot of other ways in which you can avoid advertisements and keep your money and time focused on the things you love. We would love to hear your ideas. Leave a comment below. The less commercials we have to watch the better. I can't wait until we get to Luzhi, China where I won't understand what all the ads are telling us.
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All the Best in Your Adventures
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