If frame is our personal set of boundaries, and sense of self that we do not change, then my topic today kind of plays off of that concept. As a leader, you get to decide what your family is subjected to on a daily basis. If nothing else, you can mitigate the amount of toxicity they are exposed to and you can use this added time to build a stronger relationship with your family.
They cry “media propaganda” and “brainwashing”. Just turn that shit off”- A Real Champion
There are countless articles telling you how bad modern media is. I agree with them one hundred percent, but I wont go any deeper into that topic. This is more about what you’re going to do rather than blaming the enemy. Modern media is full of propaganda, filth, and degeneracy. Why would any man want to consume this shit, let alone let his children consume it? Not only is this stuff bad, but it can be addicting for children and adults alike.
My eldest son has a cell phone. I got it to be able to reach him when he is out with his friends. Almost immediately I noticed he was spending way too much time playing games on it, and his overall attitude changed for the worse. I cut the time he was allowed to use it down to 25 minutes a day. I noticed his entire mood and how he interacted with us was completely different.
Another example was when my daughter was watching Netflix. I wasn’t watching completely, but I overheard the dialogue of some show that was in the children’s part of Netflix, talking about being obsessed with vanity and consumerism and a forced political agenda. I turned it off immediately.
For me, a long time ago I began to notice that the stuff on TV and in the media wasn’t meant for me. Even sites and blogs in our sphere can be little more than a bitch fest, blaming others for the evils of the world instead of how to make yourself a better man. In essence, I’ve found that most of the media today is very defeatist and negative. You and your family are all better off without it. I see families while out to eat with my own, where every single person is staring at their screen, barely interacting other than to show the others what they found on Youtube.
I want to state that it isn’t the devices themselves that I think are bad. Internet access has given us access to more information than ever before, but the problem exists that anyone can get on here and provide “facts” to support any belief. The message that is allowed to penetrate your family’s collective psyche is the real danger. You wouldn’t’ let some crazy guy come into your living room, stand on your coffee table and lament about how evil you are, and try to shame you into feeling inferior, so why let the idiot box do the same?
Nature Abhors A Vacuum
So you’ve made the decision to not be a media junkie and your family doesn’t just loaf around while string at the screen every night, so what do you do now? You have to provide something for them to do. Why not do something positive and productive?
First, for children limit screen time and monitor the content they are viewing. This is a no brainer. There are good apps on devices for educational purposes (math, reading etc) but anything else is just an idle time waster. Kids love structure so if after dinner you offer to take them to the park or throw a football with them outside they’ll always agree.
Second, instead of you and the wife vegging out on the couch watching mindless crap, why not spend the evening outside. Some of the best nights I’ve had were spent out back of my house with a small camp fire and a few drinks. The old school “netflix and chill.”
On the weekends, plan simple day trips with the family. My wife and kids alike respond so well to a trip I’ve been planning all week and I “surprise” them with on a Saturday or Sunday. You don’t even have to really go anywhere if you don’t want to either. Planning to plant a vegetable garden at your home or having the kids help you prepare firewood is something they’ll want to do. Even just getting together to plan out a family meal is a good activity with the kids. You can break it down further by assigning roles. Sometimes when having a cookout, my wife an daughter will prepare the side dishes inside while my son and I grill the meat. We all come together and there is a sense of accomplishment in the meal because everyone played a hand in its creation.
The take away isn’t really what you do, but that you’re unplugged and forming that mental barrier to the bullshit around us all. Twenty years from now, your sons will remember the playing catch or fixing up the deck with their dad instead of what they watched on TV. You can do wonders for your boy by letting him figure things out on his own. Don’t just rush in to help him if things get screwed up. Not only are you helping him become more resilient, but he’ll also build confidence in himself for overcoming a difficult task. The more you fill their heads with positive action, the less the outside stuff can get in.
Don’t be that family I see far too often where they just mindlessly drift around in life, constantly “entertained” by some outside force. You’re the leader, so it’s up to you to provide them with something to do. Any asshole can buy his kids ipads and send them on their way. You have to control the level of exposure to mass media and replace it with good, wholesome activities where you teach your children acutal hard skills they’ll need in life.