*Suffice it to say there are more than enough messages infiltrating our ears, eyes and thoughts. Many of those messages are coming from television shows, marketing campaigns and other media related outcomes. I thought I might offer my humble opinion on what I would like to continue, hold and what we should quit.
BASKETBALL WIVES (television show): Rating STOP. Way too demeaning and negative in a world where people are already trying their best to stay positive and above water.
SCANDAL (television show): Rating PLAY. While it gets a little touchy with dogging the POTUS and saddling the position with all types of affairs and indiscretions, I have to say that the writing is superb. Each character was perfectly casted (in my humble opinion since I’m sure I was a Casting Agent in my past life *smile*). Prime time television has finally allowed a quality show with a cast that is kind of colorless, in a way. I believe it’s an opportunity to celebrate and accept the human spirit, versus a race. Well play Shonda Rhimes. You are an inspiration.
REALITY TV (television): Rating PAUSE. We need to get a grip on our messaging before we create one more reality show. We’re becoming quite a schizophrenic society. We tell the young people that they need to do better. We shame people for acting outlandish on television and embarrassing a group of people. But then we support it by watching, tweeting and breathing new life into it everyday. We constantly feed our young people images and videos of people behaving badly by tearing each other apart and exhibiting low levels of intellect. Letting the cameras capture real life for the sake of inspiring, informing, educating and even entertaining seems like a reasonable use of sharing people’s lives. However, when the “reality” shows are scripted, edited and otherwise sliced to present drama, backbiting, and constant fighting, this is where I vote for a reassessment of what we’re calling good tv worth our time.
NOTABLE CELEBRITIES ON A PEDESTAL (Concept) Rating: STOP. Charles Barkley was a pioneer in leaping off the pedestal each time we tried to put him on one. Rihanna is refusing to let us keep her there. This is a two edged sword. On the one hand, celebrities present a certain image to society. They wear the most expensive clothing (borrowed or bought) and we say “oooohhhh”, they Tweet pictures at the “hottest” parties (invited or crashed) and we say “aahhhhhhh”, they show us their truth (on purpose or by mistake) and we say “Noooooo”, and the cycle continues. Notable personalities want our “fanship” and support, and we want them to show us the bling and the “high life”. Everyone buys into the picture and then. . . the fall from grace comes. The truth comes out. Maybe we could STOP treating people based upon our perceptions of who they are or what they have, and take each individual human spirit at face value.
AUTHENTIC LIVING (Concept & Shameless plug for my book “The Things I Used to do to Sneeze!”) Rating: PLAY. Given the discussion above, the best way to prevent the “pedestal syndrome” and disingenuous living is to decide to sign up for an authentic way of life. With this life philosophy, there is understanding that things aren’t always what they seem. There is an understanding that more doesn’t mean better, that money doesn’t equate to happiness, that people aren’t their chosen professions and a host of other misconceptions about people and life. This way we won’t judge Rihanna for how she lives, or Justin Beiber for wanting to come out with Floyd Mayweather or Beyonce for not showing up enough in the public eye while pregnant or Tami Roman for what they’ve shown us of her on television or President Barack Obama for doing what he thought was best in the face of a decision that may have challenged his own belief system.
Just because we push “play”, doesn’t mean it must always continue. Our ability to self monitor based upon results is waining. We’re getting caught up in the sensationalism and the spectacles of life. Let’s begin by pushing “play” on our authentic life’s journey, “pause” on those things that we need to re-evaluate in our own lives and “stop” on the behaviors and interruptions that take us off our purposed path.
PLAY, PAUSE or STOP. You choose.
Monica Cost is the Founder of Evidently Assured brand strategy firm and the Live Your Truth Experience (L.Y.T.E.). She is the Author of the new life changing book on living an authentic life called, “The Things I Used to do to Sneeze!: How to live an authentic life with awesome sensations.” Email her at: [email protected]. Follow her via Twitter: @monicacost and Facebook.com/monicahairstoncost. www.monicacost.com.