Sparkling Isolation – Day 47

No news is good news.

For years, I have been accused of being an ostrich where news is concerned – burying my head in the sand. I disagree with that image. I am not totally unaware, nor am I in total avoidance as that image might convey.

I do admit, however, that I learned a very long time ago that an overload of news was an automatic pathway to stress and anxiety for me. I know there is good news out there, but bad news increases ratings and rating mean advertising dollars for news outlets – so bad news gets all the headlines.

Social media has exacerbated the problem. Now, via Facebook and other such outlets, everyone can put themselves out there as an instant expert on just about anything. Best of all, for those who need to project their supposed superior intellects, they can hide behind the anonymity of the internet. So not only can people say anything they want with authority, they can hide their identities.

Years ago I started dialing back any active approach to the news. I figure, if something tremendously important happens then someone will tell me about it. Which leads us to the current crisis.

Jesus H. Tap Dancing Christ on a Crutch! People have become even more insane then they were before.

When this quarantine first began, I started a morning habit of journaling by hand. One of the prompts I started writing about was to identify exactly how long I planned to check the news during the day and from what specific news outlets.

Early on I opted for ten minutes per day, checking the headline news on my iPad.

That lasted for a few weeks, and then one day I finally realized that even that little bit was making me sick – mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Knowing how things work in my life, I realized that I would start to get physically ill soon if I did not just stop.

So I don’t check the news at all any longer. I pick up a hint here and there from friends and their posts on Facebook. If I am curious, I have a few specific friends who I will text or message with questions. The one exception I make to this new ‘rule’ is that I will occasionally check the COVID-19 statistics for my town and county to see how well we are doing on the “flattening the curve” trajectory.

Otherwise, I am spending any online time I choose to spend wither interacting with friends or visiting some of my favorite positive websites, including:

Happify
Screen/Life Balance
Random Acts of Kindness

There are many others, but those are my current favorites.

So, perhaps I am like an ostrich now – burying my head in the sand. I suppose the positive upside is that with my head buried in the sand I can’t accidentally touch my face.

It’s only Quarantine if it comes from the Quarante province of France. Otherwise, it’s just Sparkling Isolation.