Anyone who has ever watched television has experienced that moment — typically during the good part of your favorite show — when the television screen freezes. This occurs when something ranging from storms in some part of the service area to the gerbil in his gerbil wheel generating the power for it taking a break for some lettuce or gerbil chow.
Really, it could be anything for all we on the receiving end know. But whether it is a true technical issue or simply bigfoot scratching his back on our receivers, the end result is the same.
Our service, the flow of information into the little box which allows us to watch the Real Housewives of the Tri-State, has been interrupted. Sometimes the interruption is brief, and we only miss the punchline of a sitcom joke or which bachelorette is “throwing shade” at everyone. Sometimes the interruption is a bit longer, and we get to see just how terrifying our favorite celluloid “crush” is when their image is fragmented and scattered across the screen. And other times, well, we lose everything and watch the “signal lost” screen for several minutes before shutting it down in disgust.
The point is, in order to go on about our viewing business, we need that uninterrupted flow of information. Sure, we might be fairly certain which bachelorette is doing all that back-stabbing, but we can’t be certain until the “big reveal.” And though we might have heard similar jokes a dozen different times, we haven’t heard it from that particular sitcom character. Maybe they tell it better, or in a different way. And, of course, no one, “crush” or not, looks good when they have been reduced to a digital version of a Salvador Dali painting. No one needs to see (or be) that.
Our brains operate in similar ways, and often suffer just as much from the interruption in the flow of information. Most of us don’t “go on the fritz” like a character in a science fiction movie when this happens, of course. But there are issues when we don’t get the information we need to go on about our business. We can and do continue to operate when the flow of information is interrupted, but our operations are at least moderately curtailed. And the real problem is that when this happens, we stop growing and evolving.
We might believe that since we have gone about things in the same manner for years that we can continue to do so for many more years, and in some cases this is true. Reinventing the wheel, for instance, would be entirely too much work every single time we find ourselves in need of a wheel. On the other hand, the wheel has been improved many times since the chariot races in ancient Rome. That information, along with an unlimited number of other equally useful things, is why we need to keep the information pathway as open as possible.
As time goes on, we tend to become sedentary in both physical activity and the way we go about things. This can become a problem, especially with regards to our health and over all wellbeing because regardless of whether or not we have changed our outlook on these things, our actual needs have changed. Far too many times we ourselves are the culprit, the cause of the frozen frames of our mind’s television, because we are either unwilling or unable to “refresh” our signal. And if we eliminate or ignore the flow of new information, it just makes it harder to see any way out of the “rut” we have fallen into.
Of course, not all information is good simply because it is new. The ill-advised and dangerous trend of soaking cotton balls in orange juice and eating them to curtail hunger was monumentally hazardous to everyone who tried it — but at one time that trend was new. The only upside to any of that was to highlight and prove just how dangerous it was. On the other hand, a new exercise regimen based upon low impact aerobics could prove beneficial to almost anyone. And whenever a proven (scientifically, not “social net-worky”) health benefit of certain foods or combinations of foods becomes available, that is news we could all benefit from hearing.
We don’t need to throw out our old regimens of health and fitness en masse simply because they are old; if jogging and pushups still work for you, by all means keep doing them. But we need to keep our eyes and ears open for new things from credible sources which will help us and enhance the enjoyment of our lives.
We don’t need to (and honestly shouldn’t) keep staring at a frozen screen close-up of an actor’s nostrils because the flow has been interrupted from one source, either. This is the information age, after all. We can stream other sources for the information, and Google almost never goes down; so, we shouldn’t have to, either.