It’s been a very long time since I have opened a newspaper and I rarely watch the news on television. Why? I don’t need to hear about all of the negative things happening in the world, that’s why. It’s depressing and I have decided that life is too short to spend my time worrying about all of the bad things happening when there are some pretty amazing things going on that we just don’t hear about. There’s a reason that most of the news stories we see on television and read about in the paper are depressing. Negative stories make for great ratings. Simple as that.
The big news here at the moment is the active volcano in Bali. Many people around me view Bali as their go-to holiday destination and the volcano is playing havoc with their holiday plans. Depending upon the prevailing winds, an ash cloud may or may not be blowing across the airport in Denpasar. This obviously has a great impact upon whether or not an airline chooses to fly in and out of the city. Our news has been flooded with stories of people desperately trying to return to Australia to go back to work or school and others who are still trying to get to the island to begin their holiday. Nearly every person interviewed has some horror story to tell.
A colleague at work has recently returned from Bali. She and her family stepped off the plane at the airport back home in Australia and were met by a local news crew looking for a story. The cameras were rolling and a reporter asked them about their experience. As soon as she told them that her family hadn’t experienced any issues with their flights, the camera was turned off and the crew went in search of someone else to interview. Her story was just not newsworthy enough.
This is not an uncommon occurrence. How many times do we see an uplifting story unless it’s something absolutely mind blowing? Very rarely do they make the cut. They are just not newsworthy enough.
Certainly for me I know that I can get sucked in to negative discussions around the latest news hype and perpetuate the feeling of anger or hopelessness that the story initially encouraged. I’m not saying that we shouldn’t keep up with current events but I am saying that we should definitely not overdose on them.
What can we do to counter the negative effects these things have on our lives?
There are a number of simple steps we can take to put things back into perspective.
1) Experience the wonder of nature.
2) Maintain friendships.
3) Participate in a sport or hobby.
4) Make an effort to help another person.
5) Take time for yourself.
6) Spend time with a pet.
7) Appreciate your surroundings whether they be buildings, nature or people.
8) Spend time with a loved one.
It’s these simple little pleasures which can help us to reconnect with the good things life has to offer. Sometimes we underestimate the value of a good laugh with a friend, a hug from a loved one or the beauty in a flower from the garden. We need to learn to appreciate these small things and focus on the positives they bring into our lives rather than dwell on negatives which are happening in the wider world. If we all did this, we would be a lot happier as a result.