Probably like most of you I watch a bit of TV. Of all the things in life, TV is one of the easiest ways for me to relax. After a day of speaking or training where I’ve often been on my feet all day, working the room, keeping people engaged and happy, it is exhausting. My feet hurt and my brain is tired, emotionally tired as they say. So when I get home or back to my hotel room, an hour or so of ‘mindless’ early evening TV really helps me to reset my brain and move on. My wife Clare has learnt to ignore me for an hour or so I’m sure too. I shut the door in the living room or to my hotel room, put on the ‘mindless’ TV and I enjoy a strong cup of Decaf Yorkshire tea and a snack while I ‘come into land’!
But even though I do find TV helpful at times, there is a growing problem with TV and media these days. It is ingrained into our culture but it can be something that we miss. And that is that TV is more and more about extremes. Extreme situations and extreme people sell programs and it is getting bigger. Look at some of the programs that are really popular. The top programs watched in the first half of 2019 so far are Line of Duty, Britain’s Got Talent, Manhunt, Call the Midwife, Luther, Cleaning Up, Cheat, Death in Paradise, Coronation Street and Vera. What do most of them have in common?
Extreme situations and eccentric people make good TV and clickable news posts. As someone said TV is life with all the boring bits taken out. Now, I’m not saying that we need more boring programs, I mean Gardeners World is there for all to see and we probably had enough of those ‘fly on the wall’ documentaries in the 2000’s to last us a lifetime.
But my point is this. If we always pump out extremes as the norm then we miss one of the best ways to live our lives.
And that is with moderation.
Yeah I know it sounds a bit dull. But I am keen to celebrate moderation. Sure we’d lose such gems as the derivatives of ‘The Jeremy Kyle Show’ and ‘My 600-lb Life’, but we’ll probably survive, I reckon.
Imagine when it came to money, people just spent a bit, saved a bit and gave a bit away?
Imagine if people’s beliefs made them happy, made a difference, but didn’t make them into a noisy bigot or a terrorist?
Imagine if people enjoyed doughnuts, chocolate and takeaways, but were then careful on the other days so they didn’t get really ill?
Imagine if people enjoyed a drink or two but didn’t feel the need to have a skinful and end up in the hospital?
Imagine if people didn’t jump into bad relationships or treated their partners badly, but they were fun sometimes, serious other times and were a little more steady? Everyone likes a bit of romance and the occasional surprise but ‘Steady Eddie’ beats ‘Krazy Keith’ in long-term relationships any day.
Moderation is a lost key to happiness and success.
I study people and why they do what they do. And as the world gets a little crazier and we get exposed more and more to the extremes of life, we need some moderation.
I’m not saying let’s all be boring, I’m just being honest. Oh, and I believe in excellence too, I want to be excellent in what I do and how I live, but I won’t bow down to, or promote perfectionism or extreme behaviour.
Moderation certainly isn’t fashionable, but it might be just what we need right now.
What do you think?