Last week Tom attended the annual Dallas Ad Club luncheon centered on magazine advertising. On site there are a multitude of booths set up where attendees can get copies of literally all the current magazines. Again this year he brought home at least two dozen in a tote bag, everything from InStyle to National Geographic Traveler. I am not much of a magazine reader, but it is good to have something quick and relatively mindless to look through when the kids are swimming and I am hanging out in a lounge chair by the pool. After perusing a number of the magazines he brought home, I have some observations.
First of all, the amount of advertising in magazines is ridiculous! What is up with that?! It is completely overwhelming to me the number of ads for skin care, hair color, pharmaceuticals, diet pills, personal hygiene products, cosmetics....seriously, with so many options in wrinkle cream how the hell are women ever supposed to figure out what might work for us?! The other problem is information just seems to get regurgitated in one form or another about once a year. Am I the only person who's noticed this trend?
Okay, back to the advertising....specifically the ads for pharmaceuticals. Have you ever thought to yourself, after seeing an ad for some prescription medication, that the list of side effects is worse than the actual problem you are experiencing? I mean yes I have a rash on my leg, but if I use your cream (or pop the pill you're pumping) I may wind up with nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, depression or, worse yet, suicidal! No thanks, I'll just deal with the leg rash. It scares me to think about how our culture has become so quick to want to medicate away every little ache and pain.
I actually believe a lot of our physical aches and pains are the result of emotional and mental pain we've experienced in our lifetimes that we have suppressed. What I mean by that is, as opposed to looking honestly at ourselves, at our past and where we stand today, we medicate. If we just dealt with those emotions (hurt, regret, anger, fear, frustration) honestly and learned from it, we wouldn't need to pop so many pills. The worst part about this my friends is that we're teaching our children to do the same thing.
I am not saying there aren't very valid reasons why some people need to take medication. I am saying we (as a society in general) are quick to think if I take something I'll feel better.
People medicate themselves in a lot of different ways. It might be pills, or alcohol, or shopping, or sex, or work, or over-scheduling your life so there is no time to pause. Take just a minute to think about where you might be medicating. Would love your feedback on this topic!