It’s amazing how much less stressful life has been since I stopped watching local news.
I’ve stopped dealing with murders, busted gambling operations in random Stop N Robs I dont care about, no Zika virus (or other medical scare du jour) and I’m ok without the random feel-good report about someone’s grumpy cat gone viral.
And yet, important information still finds a way to find me.
Try this: Pay attention to the news next time you watch it on TV or read it online.
With each news segment or topic, ask yourself:
Self, does this segment (or article) affect me in any way shape or form. Is this information actionable? Can I do anything with this newsworthy report?
If not, you’re probably just entertaining yourself because you’re bored.
Seriously. Count the total number of stories you view. Then see how many bring you any value that moves you closer to a goal you have.
I’ll save you from wasting your time with this experiment.
The answer will be none. Zip. Zilch. Nada. Or at least not frequently enough to justify burning an hour or more a day of your time.
Turn off the TV news and try to block “news” sites from your browser with a page blocker extension such as Block Site (link is for chrome). It took me about a week to stop checking Yahoo.com’s news homepage dozens of times a day out of absentminded boredom. And it wasn’t even news. Mostly click bait.
This screenshot is from Block Site putting the kaibosh on my “news” habit. The first sixty or so attempts happened in the first week after I implemented the block. The rest have been quite sporadic over time. This was also a good tool to kick my absentminded Facebook addiction.
Seriously. Block. the. news.
It’ll buy you an hour a day in free time you didn’t know you had, and you won’t miss a thing.