LPT: Don’t read the news if you’re trying to improve your mental health. Worrying about things outside your control will not help anyone including yourself.

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Don’t borrow other people’s problems.


Advice like this comes up often, and while I agree in part there’s also something really dangerous about this line of thought (though you do address this in brief with your last sentence). Yes, absolutely do regulate the amount you expose yourself to inflammatory rhetoric. Yes, regulate the amount you worry about things that are out of your control. But no, don’t think turning your back on the world and ignoring how things are is going to make things better, for you or anybody else. Instead spend most of your attention and time where you have the most power; that means give it to yourself, and then to your immediate environment, and then to your community. Give less attention where you have less power. Anxiety really sets in when you’re hyper-aware of things that you’re mostly powerless to change, and with that often comes a paralysis that prevents us from changing the things we can. Don’t ignore things, instead give most of your attention and your effort where you can do the most good. Then you’ll feel better and you won’t just be coasting by on the privilege that lets you ignore things outside yourself.


I stopped listening to the news almost two years ago now. Several things are amazing: 1. The world is a nicer, more enjoyable place. I can actually feel a more positive perspective on life. 2. I still know a lot about what the news is saying because everyone else is so focused on the news. They talk about it all the time. The news is at the grocery store, on gas pumps, on billboards, on most web sites. It is truly ubiquitous. I am convinced that the news, all news, is designed to hook us to it’s content so they can sell ad revenue. “Informing us’ of “news we need to know” is the pretense they use. I think there is an addictive element to listening to the news. “If it bleeds it leads. If it does not bleed we will present it as if it does bleed.” I do not have a good reason to have all that negativity in my life. And I have found good reasons not to.


Ignorance is bliss. It’s much easier to enjoy life if you don’t know or care about what transpires beyond your own small slice.