Media surrounds our every day life. It's the radio advertisements in the background as you drive, the Facebook newsfeed minimized while you type, and the content you're consuming as you read this.
You probably don't give these small (and seemingly meaningless) moments in time much thought. But what if these moments add up to affect how you think, act, and live? Would you do anything differently?
According to Victor Frankl, author of Man's Search for Meaning, the meaning of life is found in every moment of living.
But the media can often minimize its depth. After all, the media is in your face screaming that it's important, so you must listen or watch, right?
Not so much.
To make more meaningful media, we need to become more mindful of how we live, in every moment. Here are some tips:
Become aware of the Lizard Brain
There's something in your brain called the amydala. And it's responsible for playing to the status quo. It may be one of the reasons why you still watch the news every night (even though it drags you down). Or why you listen to the same song on the radio (even though you don't really love it). The amydala likes to keep things comfortable. But comfortable? Doesn't always mean meaningful.
If something isn't working, but you find it hard to change, ask why. By becoming aware of the natural tendency to not change, you'll become more aware of how you can evolve with purpose.
Question what you consume
Remember that the mainstream news creates media to fill 24 hours a day. Not everything that you consume will be creative or inspiring. Keep in mind that there's a lot of digital clutter.
Would you go to the grocery store and eat everything you see? Treat information like food. Consume only what you want and need.
The beauty of the digital world is that you have the power to choose what you want. You're not being forced to read this. You're in an opt-in culture. Question. Disconnect. And re-evaluate everything. Yes, even this article. You have my permission (even though you don't need it).
Don't get bombarded with mainstream messages
Start small. Try setting time limits to your media consumption habits. Or try to become a more active consumer of news, as opposed to passively consuming anything and everything that comes your way. Listen to niche podcasts about your hobbies. Or read a new blog with a unique perspective. The digital world is there to discover.
One of my favorite quotes is "when things aren't adding up in your life, start subtracting." Let's say, for example, you have twenty television shows tivo'd, but none of them adds real value to your life. Why not subtract a show each week, and see how you do? Subtracting meaningless media from your life allows you to focus on what's important.
Focus on "humanity"
Humanity gives your business an edge. But it's often defined objectively. What does "being human" mean to you? Is it being real, honest, and transparent? Or is it being a good person to those around you? By working on your idea of what being human means to you, you'll become more mindful of your everyday interactions. And how it affects others.
How do you make media more meaningful? Please comment below.
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