I used to be addicted to news. Primetime, Newstalk, BBC, Al Jazeera – Domestic, National, International. Politics, business, it didn’t matter. I’d lap it up and shout at the TV or send in angry texts to the radio. Ooh and I liked arguing about it on the internet too. Getting worked up about unions, and human rights, global warming etc on the odd forum or social media.
Now all that stuff is important. Sure it is. But it took up way too much of my energy and despite my ego, no amount of my ranting and raving on the internet would have the slightest impact on any of those matters. And it is relentless! There are news sources everywhere. I was heavily investing my time into an activity that provided no benefit to anyone. From an opportunity cost perspective, I was wasting time that could have been spent on family, learning, sleep or, well, any positive activity.
I docked an idea from Tim Ferris and his 4HWW book about choosing a Low Information Diet and Selective Ignorance. Not necessarily a novel idea but execution is everything.
So I executed. Over the course of a month I gradually wound down my consumption of news programming. I said goodbye to Claire Byrne, Vincent Brown and other late night news panel discussions and claimed back sleep time!
Now, or course it is important to stay informed on current affairs but now I batch information consumption. Maybe you like reading Sunday papers or take time to read through Saved Links in your FB feed. Do whatever works for you but keep it down to an hour or two each week. Eliminate arguing on the internet too.
The results are significant. Better sleep and zero fucks to give.
TLDR: Nothing really changes. Unions threaten strikes. The US is at war with someone. Some political scandal. Stop wasting your precious time consuming details of events that will provide no tangible benefit to your life.