To watch or not to watch that is the question I’ve been having the past few days. Do I want to see more shooting? More killing? More raping? More lies? More children suffering? I was semi-inspired to write this post because of another blog post I read this past week. The author spoke about a friend she knew who had told her that she had stopped watching the news some years ago and felt much better about life in general. The author then asked if not watching the news was the equivalent of saying you didn’t care about what was happening in the world? She battled with this question of being ignorant to the current events of the world or to stay informed. Then when she moved countries she started to read more news on the internet in which she called a “buffet style” news reading. She was able to pick and choose what she wanted to read.
She said she had inadvertently given herself the best gift of all and added that turning off the news was a major turning point to her path to a simpler lifestyle. She goes on about how the lack of news negativity was actually helping her change her most basic approaches to life. Genius! I thought as I read the post. It was something that I had been battling with recently and something that I really value about the “buffet style” news reading she mentioned. Since I have lived out of the country for a few years now I have turned more to this style of news reading, but by no means do you have to live out of the country to do this.
So what exactly am I saying? Well, I’m not saying you should be ignorant to the world around you, I’m not saying you shouldn’t care about the crises that are happening, to the people who need your help, to the changes happening in countries. And I am definitely not saying that when you stop to watch the news all your negative thinking and skepticism will magically disappear. I’m saying that the current events news that we all watch at 6pm…10pm…12pm…9am… whatever hour you choose, could actually be impacting us more than we think.
The blogger wrote one particular phrase that I think sums up perfectly what I’m trying to say. She says, “Being selective about the news you absorb is a way of living deliberately and mindfully.” Deliberately and mindfully! What refreshing words I thought to myself. I think that in today’s world it is not so easy to live this way. We are constantly engulfed and surrounded by the things that society wants us to hear, to do, to NOT hear. How often do we get to choose what we deliberately do?
There are so many things we can read about, things that interest us, things that make us believe in things, travel, food, religion, whatever floats your boat, frosts your cupcake, soothes your soul… you get the picture.
So do you cut out all the gloomy, critical and tragic news? No…But watch in moderation. Please. I could sit on my computer for hours reading about the tragedy in Japan, the murders in Libya, the protests around the world, the starvation in Africa. What good will it do me though?
So. Read. Be informed. Help. Do good. But don’t become overwhelmed and depressed by the news. Seek balance and simplicity, read things that matter to you, read things you enjoy and don’t be engulfed by the sorrows. I know it’s easier said than done. But I promise when you start to read “buffet style” things will seem a little brighter. At least they do for me.
Trying to be balanced!