Equal Air Time
One more thing before we get back to our discussion of the holidays.
We can’t deny that the media is full of bad news, and when that’s all we see, we’re at risk of developing the belief that the world is a terrible place.
And if you believe the world is a terrible place, your brain will look for evidence to prove that belief true.
It then gets harder and harder to notice good, feel good, and do good.
This is called confirmation bias.
“Confirmation bias is the tendency of people’s minds to seek out information that supports the views they already hold. It also leads people to interpret evidence in ways that support their pre-existing beliefs, expectations, or hypotheses.”
Any version of, the world is a terrible place, is a dangerous belief because of how it will cause you to feel and show up in your life.
It will keep you in fight or flight, affect your immune system, your hormones, and your brain chemicals, and ultimately make you sick.
Imagine how different you would show up to a relationship with a person you believed was terrible and a person you thought was good.
You might be shut down, guarded, defensive, always looking for evidence to prove that they were terrible vs. being expressive, open, curious, and noticing good.
We show up similarly to our relationship with the world and our lives.
This is not to deny that there are very concerning events occurring that we need to be aware of, but it’s to stabilize your nervous system so you can remain calm and make deliberate decisions that will contribute to your well-being and the well-being of society.
The skill we need to develop during these troubling times is equal air time.
Equal air time means we intentionally look for good to find the positive.
Good and bad are always around us. It’s our job to find the balance.
If watching the news is important to you, then give positive news equal air time; it’s good for your brain, your body, and society.
How do we do this?
Before you mindlessly watch or read the news or scroll through social media, fill your mind with goodness and positivity.
I googled positive news and found hundreds of websites devoted to acknowledging and reporting the good in our world.
Give it a try.
I also googled, laugh of the day, and found a few things that made me smile.
I searched for good news podcasts, and guess what?
Good news is everywhere if we know how to look for it.
You could start your day with a meditation, inspirational reading, or prayer.
You could send a friend or family member a text telling them you’re thinking of them and hope they have a great day.
I’m not on TikTok, but my husband thoughtfully sends me heartwarming and funny videos.
Be careful what you click on social media.
The algorithms are set up to send you more of the same, and then it seems that’s the only perspective available.
Start your day with good news by looking at these sites, or create some good news by taking a few minutes to remind yourself of and savor the good things in your life (this is my favorite).
The point of this is to remember and be in control of who you want to be and how you want to show up in your life.
You have a choice, you know, and when you decide on purpose, it helps your brain learn how to help you get there.
When you are bombarded with bad news, don’t forget there is good in the world as well.
We can’t possibly know everything that’s going on, but we will find what we’re looking for.