News and information are all around us. That’s the first thing we see when we wake up and the last thing we see before we go to bed. It has become how people in this day and age get their daily information. And unfortunately, we are also constantly overwhelmed by the many newsworthy – but often troubling – world events.
It is no secret then that being so connected and updated about the news can also be tough on our mental health – especially during mass media coverage surrounding upsetting things like war and conflict and social calamities.
During these times of heightened media coverage, we need to learn to strike a balance between staying informed and protecting our mental health. Here are some of the ways we can cope with mentally trying news:
Note that more information isn’t necessarily better
During uncertain and rapidly developing situations, it is common to feel like you need to be constantly updated with what is happening – leading to us consuming more information. We feel the need to read more articles to feel a sense of security.
In actuality, overconsuming news does less good than we expect. The news can’t answer all the questions we have and the more we read, the more redundant the information is. Hence, it is more important to focus on our mental health and reshaping our news consumption habits.
Limit to a few trustworthy news outlets
It is great to source your news to a few media outlets. However, don’t overwhelm yourself. Instead, pick a few trustworthy news outlets e.g. the BBC. By sticking to a handful of credible sources, you won’t be needing more information than you do.
Ask someone you trust to give you news roundups
You can cut down on your news consumption as well as give yourself a few minutes to be social by getting your news from someone you trust. That person could be your colleague, friend or family member. This way, you not only limit your news intake but you can also help one another process both upsetting and exciting news together.
Focus on your mental health
Your mental health is yours to protect – remember that constant news updates are just an obstacle that you can overcome. Take these steps and let your close ones know if your mental health is struggling. Your mental health must become your primary focus.