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How to Watch Movies and Get the Most Out of It

“Everything I learned I learned from the movies” — Audrey Hepburn.

The Pursuit of Happyness.

“Everything I learned I learned from the movies” — Audrey Hepburn.

If you are like me, then you love to watch movies.

Series, documentaries, feature films— no matter the kind — you are eager to invest some of your weekend time in biting off the craft.

While there’s nothing wrong in dedicating time to something you really enjoy, how you should deal with all that buzz around — ‘stop watching Netflix — stop procrastinating’, ‘be active — movies time equals lost time’, ‘the world won’t wait for you, so don’t be stuck in front of the screen’.

They call us Netflix maniacs, blue screen procrastinators, lazy TV bugs, time losers and many more tiny stinky words.

I have a question though — how the fuck they find time to create all those ‘sexy names’? Is that considered to be a valuable time investment?

If so, then watching movies is something those ‘name-writers’ shall consider.

According to Ken Miyamoto, screenwriter, former Sony Pictures script reader/story analyst and Sony Studios liaison — “We all need to escape from life’s trials and tribulations. Movies offer us a ticket into another world, if not for just two hours at a time. We can select which movies we NEED to see. Whether we want to, or NEED to, laugh, cry, scream, cheer, etc. Movies offer us that”.

In other words, smart movie watching boosts your productivity, empathy and happiness. Helps you to release negativity and drop anxiety, become more socially aware and engaged.

However, it has nothing to do with real movie watching addiction — when one finds herself repeatedly stuck-faced in front of the blue screen no matter “The Simpsons” or “Walking Dead”, most importantly, no matter the life around. In fact, this tends to be one of modern social addiction scourges overjumped most probably only by opioid crisis.

So, what do you do? How not to get lost in the red ocean of movie-mania?

Here is my Movie Gig Biohacking Kit that can help you to become friends with your movie-loving self.

1.Be on mission. Foresee the events.

Ever watched a kid following the adventures’ path together with the character crew? It’s not about physical actions — jumping together with Winnie the Pooh or beating the hell out of that mean coyote. It’s about following & predicting the plot. So called, over-winning the characters by solving the puzzle before you get the answer.

Best film genres to experiment with — crime, action, mystery, thriller.

You’ve most probably heard it multiple times — your brain is your most important ‘muscle’. It’s vital not only to hear though to use. Your brain requires exercise. You don’t disregard the body fat, right? So why not boosting your brain’s activity? Especially in such a pleasant way — being on mission together with your movie characters.

2. Think it through. There’s always more beyond the surface.

Do you remember those goose bumps on the back of your neck when one of the movie characters said something that sounded like an answer you were looking for? What a coincidence! How does she know that this is exactly what I need?

That glimpse of sudden clarification which struck your brain with electromagnetic tsunami was not a coincidence. You’ve got the answers because you were so desperately looking for them. You’ve placed your desire-order to the Universe. And most probably forgot about it. Or simply relied on Universal wisdom — she’s gonna figure it all out, I have no clue anyways. So, don’t be surprised that you’ve chosen exactly this movie at this specific time of your life. There’s much more behind that random choice than you might imagine.

However, if you are super-actively looking for answers, you may find it hard to ‘let go’ and ‘rely on Universal wisdom’, therefore you may try to watch two-three crafts of these genres to boost your answers searching process — drama, historical, magical realism, philosophical, romance, slice of life.

3. Compare and weigh. Don’t worry be happy.

Yes, you are one of a kind. And, yes, your life is one of a kind as well. However, we all tend to forget how authentic every bit of our life is. Natural boosters like sleeping, walking, laughing, even sex are sometimes perceived as ‘always there to do’ — always available and therefore less exciting. In this case movies can serve as an added value eye-opening booster. Relevant movie watching and analysis can uplift your happiness level tremendously.

One of my friends likes to say — I watch murder mystery, horror and all types of thriller stories, compare them with my life and all the hardships I’m dealing with, and immediately feel the relief — suddenly my life turns out to be not so bad.

I’ve domesticated this idea myself, cause it damn works.

Want to be happy — define what unhappy is.

Juicy comedy and satire can be great happiness boosters as well.

4. Submerge into unknown. Release the burden of reality.

Sometimes it’s too much. Too hard. Too everything.

Your mind gets trapped into continuous round of shitty events — full house tailspin.

You can’t even think of taking a break — you are trying to over-sprint the marathon.

Watching episodes of science fiction, speculative (like supernatural fiction), fantasy, adventure, action and even western movies can help you rewire your brain.

These genres are beautifully animated, fantastically flavored and most important — easy to watch. No need to submerge into details & investigate. Even though in state of 360-tailspin you can hardly calm your mind, meditate and repeat positive mantras, you can always watch a movie, making it a gift to yourself and to others — believe me, as hard as you are on yourself as hard you are on those around you.

5. Don’t like to read? Not ready to listen? Watch.

There’s too much hassle going around reading. If you don’t read you are lost for society, for business, and for yourself — most blog posts are telling us. Bullshit. If you don’t read, you just don’t read. If you don’t like to listen either — no matter how many choices Audible has to offer, it won’t make you happy.

Though how do you educate yourself? Of course, if degrading is not an option for you.

You watch. And the material that can truly uplift the level of your knowledge is your on top of your watch-list.

In this case most types of historical (especially biography, memoir, period piece), philosophical, political, urban, and socials can be your top choice.

Do what you love. Though learn how to get the most out of it.

There are no silly habits. Each one is a direct outcome of your actions.

Want to change your habits — be ready to change your actions first.

Want to discover the most effective ways & tools — drop me a line.

Originally published at medium.com

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