Friday, March 6, 2009

Media crash diet

I am a bit of a news junkie. When I am at home it is my habit to have ABC Local radio or Radio National going on in the background. In the car, the same. This means I listen to a constant stream of news and current affairs.
As we all know, the news for the last few months has been concerning to say the least. Downright depressing is probably more apt.
So, while I may be well-informed, I've found my mood directly affected by the dire descriptions of where the world is heading.
This morning it all got too much. For the umpteenth time, I woke to Global Financial Crisis news on the clock radio. That's it, I thought, I've had enough negativity, especially first thing in the morning. So, I've gone cold turkey and I've switched off the radio. For a couple of hours now, I have been listening to pure silence. I can't remember the last time I did that.
The effect has been immediate. The tension I didn't realise I held behind my eyes has gone. I know there is bad news out there, but I am not allowing myself to be constantly assaulted by it. I'll keep the radio switched off today, and tomorrow....and let's see how long I can do this for. I'll probably allow myself a daily ration of news, but not for a while yet.
It occurs to me that media, like anything else, needs to be consumed mindfully and selectively.
What earthly good does it do anyone to be reminded of the mayhem in the world on an hourly basis?


Linda said...

I have been on a diet like that for a few years. I do feel a little out of it. My husband says they have been using extreme words to describe a possible unemployment of 10% which of course we have had before, and no one seemed to take much notice at the time. Or a lot less notice and less extreme wording.

Paola said...

I'm still on a media diet, though not a media blackout. I listen for an hour or two in the morning. Then maybe in the evening. And that's it. And I only buy one newspaper on a Saturday instead of two. And I feel no less well informed. I'm playing a lot more music too.
Yes, I remember when 10 per cent unemployment was the norm, back when I was in high school. Funny though, I don't remember any family member or acquaintance being out of work.