Although my children rarely if ever watch the television, mommy can’t resist the box so well herself.  In my latest “be-the-grown-up-I-want-my-children-to-grow-up-to-be” journey, I have finally decided it’s time to kick the television.  All this Waldorf Education and giving my children a protected REAL childhood, apart from the influences of a rapid flicker rate is good…but then sitting every night in front of the same thing I think is bad for my children….not so good.

“OH, but you only have three weeks left of So You Think You Can Dance”!  “Who will win Hell’s Kitchen” this year”?!  “What about all those great On Demand Movies, Intervention….oh my gosh, that means you’ll miss the new season of Big Love, Dollhouse, The Office, Project Runway”!!!!  my brain protests.

The trouble is, once I am in front of a television, I can’t seem to turn it off.  I can’t fall asleep in front of it either, it wires me up, and makes me keep searching for “something else”…”there has to be SOMETHING interesting to watch”.  Since our move to this little house in Glastonbury, the TV has been moved to my bedroom.  As Tall Man snores in front of it, I stay awake until the wee hours, catching snippets of Lifetime Movies and cooking shows.  I’ll even read in front of it.  What a waste of time.

I think that the only thing to do, that will drastically change my relationship with this electronic beast, it to get rid of the cable/channel reception altogether.  I don’t know if I can convince dear husband to trash the box outright (maybe some movies on DVD…with a clear start and end), but to make it inaccessible would be a step in the right direction.

Some of the many motivating reasons to kill this thing are:

-a study (sorry, no footnotes here….google it!)  showed that your metabolism while watching television is actually slower than when just sitting and doing nothing.  Add to this the large amount of adrenaline and cortisol watching telelvision produces in the body (the flight or fight hormones).  So, your body is completely slowed down, but has coursing through it very powerful hormones that makes your body think that it is in danger.

-brain waves/patterns of synapses firing while watching television are identical to those of someone with severe depression.  So, it mimics depression.  You think that you need it to feel better, but actually makes you feel worse…going back again and again to the same contraption that sucks your time and energy, and literally changes you physiologically.  This seems to be a very insidious addiction.

-Neither of the above points have even touched upon CONTENT.  So, it doesn’t matter if you are watching a show about Mother Theresa or Hitler.  It could be porn and violence, or bunnies and angels…it still has the same physiological effects.

-Once your body and mind are put into this semi-hypnotic state, commercial television then makes suggestions that your brain readily accepts.  How much of what we television watchers believe, or how much of what we perceive to be reality is actually a suggestion that has been placed in our minds through this very powerful medium?  How much would we change if we were to stay away from it entirely for an extended amount of time?

If you have never seen it, watch the 20 minute documentary The Story Of Stuff:

You can watch the whole thing on their site.  This is another compelling reason to reevaluate our televisions, and our posession entirely.

Okay, I think I have convinced myself…now to get rid of it before I fall asleep again…..