For many of us, it seems that entertainment and social media have saturated our lives. There are benefits and conveniences to screen time, but could media be the greatest distraction from life’s most meaningful relationships and activities?
The average teen now spends nine hours per day on entertainment and social media (1). The average parent logs nearly eight hours per day of entertainment. The average child will spend more time watching television by the age of six than he will spend in conversation with his father over his entire lifetime (2).
Social media was supposed to produce the most connected generation in history. Ironically, it has given rise to the highest rates of loneliness ever recorded. Heavy social media users are 2.7 times more likely to be depressed than those who use less social media (3).
As our loving Creator, God designed our brains to experience abundant joy in Him (John 10:10) and in healthy relationships with others. He has the only antidote to our media saturation problem. The beauty of nature, the joy of family relationships, tasty and nutritious food, serving others, studying the Bible, prayer, exercise, time in nature, rest—these are God’s ways to an abundant life. And recent research studies show that each one of these actually increases happiness levels!
May you enjoy abundant health,
Rick Christman, MPH
1) Screen Time and Children (aacap.org)
2) Glow Tract Media and the Brain
3) Heavy social media users ‘trapped in endless cycle of depression’ | The Independent | The Independent