Home Columns Ask Jen Anything: Boundaries, Mornings & Social Media
Relationship Boundaries

Ask Jen Anything: Boundaries, Mornings & Social Media

by Jen Polvogt

“Ask Jen Anything” is an offseason column by Jen Polvogt, bridging motherly and fantasy football advice. Jen approaches the NFL offseason by taking questions from readers and providing answers based on her experiences. Join her this week as she answers queries about relationship boundaries, morning routines and consuming social media content.

Welcome back to season two of “Ask Jen Anything!” Can you believe it’s already been seven months since we hung out? Time flies, as they say. During the NFL offseason, I’ll be taking all of your lifestyle or fantasy football questions and answering them to the best of my ability. I can’t wait to see how the next few months unfold and how I can best help readers!

Let’s dive into this season’s first round of questions.

Relationship Boundaries & Football Fanatics

“My boyfriend and I have been together for three years, and we’ve always enjoyed watching football games together on the weekends. However, recently he has become obsessed with the NFL to the point where he spends all his free time watching games and checking stats.

I feel like his passion for football has taken over our relationship, and I’m starting to feel neglected and unimportant. I’ve tried talking to him about it, but he just brushes it off and says I don’t understand his love for the game.

What should I do? Is it reasonable for me to feel like his love for football is getting in the way of our relationship?” – Anonymous

Understandably, you feel neglected and unimportant when your boyfriend’s love for football seems to be taking over your relationship. It’s important to communicate your feelings to him and to let him know that you value your time together and would like to find a way to balance his love for football with your relationship.

113 million viewers tuned into the 2023 Super Bowl.

Perhaps you can suggest setting aside specific times for watching games or finding other activities you enjoy outside of football. Of course, couples need to have shared interests and hobbies, but it’s also important to prioritize your relationship and make time for each other.

If your boyfriend is unwilling to compromise and continues to prioritize football over your relationship, you may need to reevaluate whether this is a healthy and fulfilling relationship for you.

As a football fan, wife and mother, I understand the commitment it takes to stay up to date on everything happening in the NFL. However, balancing all the things I love has been a long journey. One way I started getting involved was to join a fantasy football team. As a result, I learned about the players, strategy and teams in the NFL. And as a bonus, I started to love to watch football at a higher level. 

While that might not be the case for you, it may be an option to bring you two closer.

Best of luck!

Rise & Shine

Without having a kid, how does one become a morning person? – Anonymous

Becoming a morning person is about establishing healthy habits and a consistent routine. While having a kid may force you to become a morning person, it is not the only way to do so. It indeed forced me to become a morning person! Gone are the days of sleeping in and waking up to my body’s internal alarm clock. However, starting the day earlier rather than later certainly has benefits.

One in three Americans don't get the recommended amount of sleep.

One in three Americans do not get the recommended amount of sleep.

One of the most important things you can do to become a morning person is to establish a consistent sleep schedule. This means going to bed and waking up at the same time every day, even on weekends. Aim for seven to nine hours of sleep per night to ensure you feel rested and refreshed. I’ve been using a sleep mask to block out the light, which has extended the time I sleep in the morning.

In addition to getting enough sleep, it can be helpful to establish a morning routine that you enjoy. This could be something as simple as making coffee and reading a book or going for a walk outside. Having something to look forward to in the morning can make it easier to get out of bed and start your day.

Finally, creating an environment conducive to waking up early is important. This might mean investing in blackout curtains to block out light, setting your thermostat to a comfortable temperature or using a white noise machine to drown out any outside noise.

Becoming a morning person takes time and effort, but it is achievable. By establishing healthy habits and creating a consistent routine, you can enjoy waking up early and starting your day on the right foot.

Good luck!

Social Media Divisiveness

“Why is it that social media, a technological advancement intended to open untold doors to enhanced communication and unity, has instead developed a reputation for divisive toxicity which thus drives human beings farther apart?” – Jayson

You make a valid point about the reputation of social media as a source of divisive toxicity. While social media was intended to bring people together and enhance communication, it has instead created a culture of polarization and hostility that can drive us farther apart.

Several factors contribute to this phenomenon. One of the biggest issues is the way social media algorithms work. These algorithms are designed to keep us engaged on the platform by showing us content that is most likely to capture our attention. Unfortunately, this often means highlighting controversial and divisive content that can drive a wedge between people with different perspectives.

Facebook launched in February 2004.

Another issue is the anonymity that social media provides. When we communicate face-to-face, we are more likely to be civil and empathetic toward one another. But on social media, people can hide behind usernames and avatars, leading to more aggressive and confrontational behavior.

Finally, the sheer volume of content on social media can be overwhelming and stressful. We are bombarded with so much information and so many opinions that it can be challenging to discern what is true and what is not. This can lead to feelings of anxiety and mistrust, further exacerbating the divide between people.

Despite these challenges, it is still possible to use social media in a positive way. By being mindful of the content we consume and how we interact with others, we can help create a more constructive and inclusive online community. We can also seek out reliable and fact-based sources and engage in respectful dialogue with those with different viewpoints.

While it may be tempting to disconnect from social media altogether, it is important to remember that technology is neither inherently good nor bad. It is up to us as individuals to use it to promote connection and understanding rather than division and hostility.

Thanks for reading my advice on relationship boundaries, morning routines and social media. Also, thank you to everyone for their submitted questions. If you want to submit a question to be considered for a future column, you can do so here.  Follow me on Twitter for more lifestyle and fantasy sports advice @JenPolvogt.

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