Watching The News Can Make Our Lives Feel Worse

Have you ever been having a bad day, week, month or year and been watching the evening news, only to find yourself feeling even worse than you were already feeling?  Is it little wonder that it does that to us?

I mean, who needs to come home from a hard day’s work, feeling worn out, cruddy and tired, only to turn on the news and hear what else cruddy has happened in the city you live in or the world? 

What worse way can you end your day and go to bed with visions of disaster, leaping through your head?

Or, how about the idea that you already feel anxious or down and turn on the news to hear that there’s been a stabbing in one end of your city, a shooting in the other end, there’s a war going on in several countries simultaneously and by the way, your property taxes, utilities and the cost of your vehicle gas are all going up next month?  

Now, doesn’t that just want to send you off to a restful, peaceful sleep?

Is it any wonder why we all feel stressed in the first place with today’s fast paced world and all that happens in it?  Does it come as any big surprise that we are feeling more anxious, more depressed and that antidepressants are being prescribed by doctors like candy to many of the population, even though not many want to admit to taking them?  

One piece of advice is to avoid listening to or reading the news.  However, that’s not easily done when the talk around the water cooler the next day is about all that was heard in the news the day before or, you suddenly are faced with your boss who wants to know what you think about the most recent event on every news channel as light chatter and you have no clue what they’re talking about.  How foolish do you feel at shrugging your shoulders and saying, “I didn’t hear about that.” 

Maybe, I’m a dreamer and maybe, I’m not facing reality but, why is it that the news can’t contain good things, nice happenings just as much as the bad?  Is our world that bad that there isn’t any good happening in it?  Of course not.  

Good happens but, bad sells.  That’s the bottom line.  People tune into the news to hear the bad.  There seems to be a morbid fascination with hearing all of the ails of the world so, the media works fairly solely on that premise.  The more of it we watch, the further their ratings shoot up and the more they’re going to cover of it.  

What if people were to boycott the news?  Not that it will happen but, let’s suppose for just one moment that we were to all turn off the news channels, turn off the radio news stations, stop buying newspapers and start watching more Big Bang Theory or re-runs of Friends, instead of the news?  What if we were to turn off our radios the moment we heard the latest traffic news and listened to music instead?  What if we were to all do this for a period of time until new producers got the idea that the world isn’t all bad and good things happen all of the time too?  What if the sponsors of the news got the hint that they need to report a mixture of both the bad and good instead of the lopsided stories that they report on?  

Of course, there will always be those who will say, “but, I love the news before I go to bed and can’t go without it.  I don’t want to hear the good.  I want to hear reality.”  

Reality is, that there is good that happens in this world.  We just don’t seem to care about it as much as we do about the tragedies, fighting, negativity, death, murder and everything else that we listen to in each newscast.  

I, for one, have turned off the news more often now.  I still want to stay informed but, I also want to balance it out so that it’s not so negatively affecting my mind on even a subconscious level.  Instead, I turn the radio to music.  I turn the tv to some comedy.  I read the articles and commentaries in the newspaper that capture my interest with new revelations instead of the regular news reports in the papers.  I simply wish to balance it out a bit more. 

If we were all to start doing a bit more of that type of thing, the sponsors and news channels might get the idea that it’s not so appealing to not report the good that happens.  At the least, we will be more balanced within ourselves.  At least, that’s the way that I see things from my little corner of life.  I may be alone in that corner but, it’s my corner and I’m sticking to that. 

 

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