I am a news junkie. I watch The Today Show as I get dressed in the morning, listen to CNN, NPR, and CNBC as I travel to and from work, and read online articles as my “water cooler” time. My day is finally complete if I catch NBC Nightly News followed by the 10 o’clock local newscast. Wow, writing that down is frightening!
But this week, I made the conscious decision to turn it off. Not all of it, but much of it. The murders, terrorist attacks, bullying, racism, bigotry, name-calling, and finger-pointing. It was bringing me down. I felt strangely guilty for tuning in less; the victims of these recent shootings and their families don’t have that choice. But I also recognized that by watching, evaluating, and discussing the events of the day, I wasn’t helping anyone either.
Most of us feel guilty when tragedy strikes, often because we feel powerless to do more to stop the carnage. Some people mourn in silence; others turn to prayer or public gatherings, share their thoughts on FB, and talk to their friends.
I had to accept that our global information-rich society is never without its injustices, tragedies, and disasters. It is important to know what is going on in the world and my community, but with the realization that somewhat shielding myself from the 24/7 newsfeed is equally important.
I too feel a great deal of responsibility to do all that I can to bring light into our world, but I must start with my community, clients, family, and friends. By understanding my limitations, my impact will be greater. I can’t eliminate racism or hatred, but I can try to share my best self with those I encounter each day. I can be kinder and more inclusive. I can notice times that my thoughts or actions do not reflect my best intentions. I can listen more. I can strive to be beacon of light in the darkness – a voice of love and reason.
Live well/Be well