I have heard it said that you spell LOVE…T I M E. We invest our time in all that we love. Our values reflect how we spend our time. On paper I say that I value my relationship with God and my family first–but my quiet times and quality time with my kids tell a different story. We often say we value our health but our time invested in exercise or shopping for healthy food do not reflect this reality. We say that TV is not a priority but studies say we spend 5-8 hours a day watching it.
Enter the uncomfortable book 7 that asks me to take a hard look at excess and the excess that comes in the form of MEDIA. Which means…for the next 21 days we will be going radio silent. As best we can…we are going to try to limit the crazy amount of “input” that enters our world.
Did ya know…
The average American spends 32 hours a month on the internet.
Average hours of TV watching in one day ranged from 5.1-8.5 hours a day depending on demographic and age group and survey.
The average American is exposed to 61 minutes of tv and internet ads and promotions a day.
Here’s a startling stat: The average youth spends 900 hours in school per year. The average youth spend 1,200 hours watching TV per year.
Yikes, okay I don’t want to be a statistic.
So this month we are going bare bones minimum on media:
TV, video games, facebook/twitter, phone apps, radio/ipod/music, texting (unless it saves time–and is necessary), or internet (unless for work)…
I do not do this because I think it will make me a better person–although I might like who I discover I am at the end of the month! I don’t do this for the sheer challenge of it–although I have never been above a good challenge. I don’t do this because I think media is evil…I think there are great things out there and Friends continues to be in our home the ultimate 20 minutes of entertainment.
I do believe we are on input overload and more often than not this causes me to be distracted. We use media to entertain, anesthetize, or disconnect from the world around us. Social media can replace real conversations, real connections, and real relationships. I want slowness and simplicity in it’s most raw form.
I want less distractions in my life.
I don’t pretend this will be easy! I don’t know what I am going to do when the kids are making me crazy and all I want to do is turn on a “show” so that I can have 30 minutes of peace and quiet. I don’t know what I am going to do when I have a super funny situation to share like when Joshua asked me if I had lost my penis or Caleb threw up in my hands–those went immediately to the Facebook wall. Where will they go now?
Heavenstobetsey…I guess I have 21 days to figure it out. But I have a feeling I am going to like the quiet. I will miss blogging because it is like therapy for me. I hope to surface on the other side more refreshed and with a healthier perspective on the stillness and a greater appreciation for what media has to offer: in small doses!
Suggestions for my friends who like the idea of opting out of media for the month???
Consider unplugging from TV for a week…the White House will wait and you will probably just miss a lot of mud slinging anyway!
Unsubscribe…How many emails do you delete in one day??? I want to HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend you UNSUBSCRIBE from all of your “ad” emails. Some take as many as 5-10 days to stop…but I did this and my inbox has SLOWED SIGNIFICANTLY!!!! You can always re-subscribe if you really miss one or two. It REALLY simplifies your inbox…and quiets your world.
Give your Internet Surfing and Facebook or Phone Apps a week off…how often do you check your fb or click on an app while bored in line at the grocery store or waiting in carpool? I am the queen of multi-tasking…but wonder what it would be like to go a week without my fb or phone apps??
I share this to encourage more intentional quiet moments. To be distraction free…and to reduce the noise pollution that pervades our lives. I care about this for me and my family but I care about it for my friends as well. In the end…LOVE=TIME…and I certainly don’t love MEDIA more than my family…so it time for me to spend the next 21 days living that out.
May You Be a Blessing and May You Be Quiet,