I’ve blacklisted fake news!
President Trump didn’t have to point out biased narratives and I didn’t need to review mental health research before I made this decision. Life is too short to wait for others to make changes I can make on my own.
Our world possesses infinite opportunities to experience happiness and this reality manifests itself whenever I take the initiative to connect with people.
Unfortunately, the mainstream media has taken upon itself to play a key role in undermining the inherent goodness found in human connection by inciting friction amongst us.
Here are a few prevailing themes in the news:
- Outrage Culture
- No good deed is done without an ulterior motive
- Candid opinions require scrutiny
- Success is tolerable
- Success + Wealth is a threat
- Poverty is noble
- You deserve (insert whatever)
- You’re a victim
- Someone or Something is the blame
- Those who think differently are the enemy
None of these beliefs empower anyone and they’re incompatible with living a lifestyle of freedom so I want absolutely no part of it!
I’ve realized that…
Mainstream Media Doesn’t Inform
The networks focus on attracting the most attention possible, which is an understandable objective for their business model. The problem is this is taken to the extreme at the expense of quality reporting.
Audiences are introduced to “Breaking News” which is nothing more than incomplete reporting released piece-by-piece until people tire of the story.
And it seems like most of the effort goes into crafting sensational headlines rather than uncovering facts from vetted sources and presenting the information clearly.
Often, the news stories leave so many information gaps that I’m left with 3 options:
Option 1: Allow media outlets free reign to monopolize my attention over a single matter for days or weeks.
Option 2: Curate news from media sources that take pride in the rigors of traditional journalism—out of respect for the audience
Option 3: Ignore the media.
For me, Option 2 strikes the perfect balance because trustworthy reporting can be an asset.
Most “News” Isn’t Newsworthy
“Who cares”! Is what I find myself muttering after seeing the typical headline.
Who cares about Kim Khardasian “clapping back” at her haters on Instagram?
Why is ESPN reporting on what Lebron James posted on Twitter?
Does it matter if a politician fumbled a response during a debate?
Politicians receive a bad rap for displaying fake and calculated behavior, but maybe… just maybe, qualified and inspiring people would consider serving the public if appearing human wasn’t treated as a fault.
The News is Outside of My Control
The KKK burns down another black church.
Am I supposed to be enraged, distrustful, or saddened?
Should I let these emotions stew over weeks until I’m subconsciously projecting a negative vibe towards white-skinned people?
I don’t attend a black church in Latin America, and neither do I meet white people (at least half aren’t American) who go out of their way to start problems.
Most News is Negative
Media outlets know that bad news attracts our attention like moths to a flame. The crazy thing is we know it will, at best, leave us agitated yet we indulge.
A man could live in the Garden of Eden where all his needs are met, but if he’s constantly exposed to negativity, real or imagined, paradise morphs into a living hell.
The mind is a work of art. It’s powerful, boundless, and fully equipped to serve whoever controls it.
I’m reclaiming what’s mine and I will protect it against negativity because my happiness depends on it.
If I’m not happy, how can I spread joy to others?
Now let’s move onto the actionable stuff. I’ve scribbled down 4 actions that’ll drastically limit your exposure to toxic mainstream media:
1. Compile a List of Media Websites
2. Install Website Blocker App on Computer
Any website blocker will do, but I felt most comfortable with the privacy policies of the services presented here instead of other “free” alternatives.
Freedom App and Rescue Time are popular services.
On the other hand, I use Cold Turkey because it meets my needs at a wonderful price point, and I’ve communicated with the Canadian owner who writes and maintains the software by himself.
Whenever there’s a choice between competing services I support small companies that deliver exceptional value.
3. Install Website Blocker App on the Cellphone
My cellphone is used less than 20 minutes per day so it’s not a problem area for me, and App Blocker makes sure of that.
This Android app limits websites and app usage. The pro version costs $6.99 for a one-time purchase.
4. Disable Device News Feeds
On Android phones, Google curates stories based on your online activity.
If you don’t benefit from the information shown, reconfigure the phone settings to hide or delete the feed (if possible).
I hope these tips help you remove unnecessary negativity (caused by mainstream media) from your life.
Because… GOOD VIBES MATTER!
Feel free to comment below or share a solution you’ve implemented.
Freedom is a Choice,