Consuming media, like eating food, is both necessary and pleasurable. One could easily make a case that eating is a much more important and necessary act than consuming media, but going for long periods of time without either one can be difficult. And while nutrition is clearly more critical than information intake, both can provide a source of pleasure that can become problematic. Either one can become an addiction or compromise one’s health if not consumed with careful consideration for the nutritional value (or lack thereof) within.
If you’re like me you may have consumed a few too many Christmas cookies over the holidays. At the same time you may have “binged” on your favorite TV show, the new video game that was under the tree, or the books that you’ve been waiting to read. Downtime during the semester break and over the holiday season is a good time to catch up on media consumption that may have taken a back seat to more important tasks last month.
But by now you’ve probably realized that there is a down-side to all of this binging. Too much “junk-food” media can make you soft (think brain instead of waistline) and unfit for rigorous mental activity. If you’re guilty of overdoing it a bit you may want to consider a more balanced diet as you begin 2019. A healthy balance of F2F human interaction and physical activity can help to off-set the risks of a media-heavy diet.
So even if you’re not a big fan of New Year’s resolutions you might consider your media consumption habits and think about how you can regain control of your mental health and your time. I’ll be right there with you.