I used to commute into London when I worked as a fashion buyer, which would take around five hours of my time each day. I got into a bad habit of picking up the daily newspaper that is freely distributed at tube stations, and consuming the headlines.
Did it pass time, and make me think I was clued in on the happenings around the world?
Did it ever make me feel good?
My mother has always been addicted to watching the news. There were many times I was forced to sit through murders and rapes and bombings, while I waited to flick the channel back to what I was watching.
While my dad is obsessed with politics; which meant sitting through ridiculous debates and interviews, coupled with my dad shouting and cursing at the TV.
Did it ever make them feel good?
My partner has a habit of turning his phone on first thing in the morning, and checking all the usual UK news websites; one after the other. The first thing he fills his mind with in the morning is clickbait headlines, and shitty stories.
Does it ever make him feel good?
Does following the news make anyone feel good?
No. It’s not meant to.
What it is meant to do, under the pretence of educating, is put you into a permanent state of fear; and get you addicted to that daily fix so you keep coming back.
When was the last time you heard something positive through a news channel, or read something that brought you joy online?
When was the last time you came away feeling better than you did when you got there?
The news is toxic, it’s negative, and it’s like a virus we’ve all just welcomed into our lives.
I know the argument is that’s what’s real; that’s what’s going on in our world.
And to that I would say, but is it? Is that really what’s going on in our world? How can you be so sure? And what about all the things that go unreported? All the things that get swept under the carpet, or are deemed unimportant by fuck knows who.
Who is it that decides what we hear about, and what we don’t? And why have we chosen to let them make those decisions?
As a woman, I find myself furious with the ratio of old, white men, reporting on white man problems; ignoring the deeply embedded gender and racial inequalities that continue to plague and divide our world.
There is no hope to be found in the news. There is no real justice to be found in the news. And there is certainly no joy or peace to be found there either.
Yet, we keep going back for more. One more hit. One more adrenaline rush. And we want to make sure we “know” what’s going on in the world, so we can talk to other “clued up” adults, and sound like we know what we’re talking about.
But we don’t. We have no fucking idea. Because we are fed what they want us to know, what they want us to talk about, and think about. No more than that.
Over the years, I’ve realised how angry and fearful the news makes me feel. So I’ve removed it from my life. I never watch the headlines, or read a newspaper, or go online for updates. My partner only divulges information to me on a need to know basis, which is hardly ever.
And I feel worlds better for it.
I fill my mind with inspiring stories, with content that uplifts me, and empowers me as a woman. Books, articles, movies, TV shows, podcasts, youtube videos… whatever the format may be. If it doesn’t inspire or empower me, then I don’t consume it.
Why would I want to? Why would you want to, either?
You’ve probably come across the saying, whatever you focus on you get more of. So, if we focus on the negative, we’re only inviting more negative energy into our lives.
I guess this is my way of inviting you to think carefully about what you’re choosing to allow in to your mind, your heart, and your sub-conscious each day; often without even realising it.
Just because that’s what your mum or your partner or your best friend does, it doesn’t mean you need to do the same.
You have a choice.
And most of us have not been consciously choosing for most of our lives. But it’s never too late to start choosing consciously again, and making new choices. Choices that support your highest evolution.