When Too Much News Is Bad News
How staying plugged into current events can cause stress
We’re stressed. We know it. And yet, we contribute to it.
More than half of Americans say that the news stresses them out to the point it may cause sleep loss. Yet 20 percent still monitor their news feeds nearly constantly.
Part of the issue is how we consume news these days. We have near constant access to very visual and graphic coverage. Even things we may not think of as news, such as video posted on Twitter of a car crash, affects us in ways we may not be thinking about.
“The way that news is presented and the way that we access news has changed significantly over the last 15 to 20 years. These changes have often been detrimental to general mental health,” Graham Davey, a professor emeritus of psychology at Sussex University in the UK, told Time magazine.
The biggest thing about over-consumption of news is being aware of it. Pare back; maybe stop receiving breaking news notifications on your phone if you notice it’s causing you to stress or get distracted. Or, limit your news habit to a specific time of the day.
We’re all wired with so-called negativity bias, meaning negative news tends to capture our attention more than the positive. So, train yourself not to get captivated with every bad piece of news that comes across your screen. Or, douse yourself with some feel-good news … maybe something like … our Feel Good blog. (Sorry, shameless plug.)
Read Feel Good Tuesdays and Thursdays online and monthly in the magazine.