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Monday, April 18, 2011

What are YOU seeing? Media Literacy Monday

Walt Mueller of the Center for Parent-Youth Understanding says “Ten years ago, music was the biggest outside influence on teenage culture and worldview. Today it is marketing, because it has become so incredibly pervasive. The average teen in America sees between 3,500 and 6,500 marketing messages every single day! They don’t buy most of those products, but they are increasingly buying the worldview that is being sold along with the ads.”

3,500 to 6,500 marketing messages EVERY day?! Call me crazy but that seems like an awful lot. If someone told you 3,500 today that you weren't thin enough, pretty enough or "anything" enough...would you start to believe it? Of course you would!

So, what do you do? Mueller's advice is good advice...

1. Know the motivation behind the ads you are seeing...what is the motivation? The almighty dollar!! When you see an advertisement for clothes, do you get the impression that you would be "cooler" if you wore those clothes? Yes. Do you TRULY...and I mean TRULY... believe those clothes MAKE you cooler? I ask you again, do those CLOTHES make you cool? Who makes you cool? YOU DO! Those clothing companies are after the money in the wallets of the people who fall for that tactic.

*so think of something you recently saw on TV, heard on the radio, read in a magazine that made you feel you could "improve" yourself - follow that thing back to the it a company that is trying to sell you something?

2. Take a media break. For (Mueller says, one week, but let's start simple) two days turn off all media. Yes, that means TV, radio, internet. Don't open a magazine. Spend some time with yourself and your thoughts.

*keep track of whether you feel more comfortable in your own skin on that day. You might be surprised!

So, in the comments below, let's chat about this.

How do you feel when you walk into Hollister? Sure, they have cool clothes, but do the models on the walls make you feel GOOD about YOU?

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