When I was first starting to research Media Psychology one of the first most helpful ideas I found was the idea that all media could be placed on a spectrum between super serious and super lighthearted. More importantly, a balance of the two could help with our emotional well-being.
A personal example for how I have practiced Media Mindfulness lately: When overcome with drowsy melancholia I found myself staying up later than healthy and having trouble turning off the TV. Instead of sleeping and regaining my energies (a helpful way to develop the clarity needed to regulate my moods and emotions) I craved the familiar and gloomy 'Jane Eyre' (2011)
Sad movies can be good for our mental and emotional well-being, but how? It seems like a paradox that we can enjoy being sad, but media psychologists are discovering that sad movies are tools we use to understand and organize our own pain. We learn how to react to pain by watching others, even characters on TV, and we can learn to ease the suffering of others as well.
I've created a YouTube Channel for Screen Therapy and the first video is being uploaded today!
This movies is full to the brim with tenderness and nostalgia. Up to the final shot of the film we are reminded very softly, like a felt paw on our shoulder, that we should remember to nourish our inner child - to listen to them deeply and respectfully - and to be a little kinder to ourselves.
You might feel guilty about the Netflix binge, but don't! Media helps us recover from stress and work strain, but it won't work if you're ashamed of watching TV or playing games...
We've all done things we wish we could take back. Regret can eat away at us for years. How can we make it go away? Surprisingly: Watch a movie!
What Did I Watch and What Did It Teach Me? I want to start checking in what media I watch/play. Almost in the same way I might log calories or track moods. Why? We watch/play media without really thinking about why. We spend dozens of our leisure hours every week interacting with media, soaking up … Continue reading What Am I Learning From Media? – Check-In #1
The Bad Habit of Multi-Screening Multi-Screening: (v.) The action of using multiple screens (smartphones, laptops, televisions, tablets, etc.) at the same time. I think we've all done this. I definitely do. We want to re-watch a specific movie, but we also want to check social media or play a game. We don't really pay attention to … Continue reading Multi-Screening: My Bad Habit
Romantic comedies tend to get overlooked. The general opinion of them is that they are, at best, feel-good fodder, at worst, "chick flicks". We underestimate their impact on viewers, which means some really good movies go unnoticed. About Time is a romantic comedy that offers a lot to its audience and deserves a spot on … Continue reading Movies We Need: About Time