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It may seem strange that as someone who writes for a newspaper, I really try not to follow the news. I gave up on Main Stream Media(MSM) a long time ago. I am old enough to remember a time when whatever the BBC said was gospel. OK, so maybe I was misled even then, but I took things at face value in those days.

The whole coverage of the recent “pandemic” finished me off with the MSM. We now know that at all levels they were being persuaded or coerced into a monotonous, pre-written and handed down script which ultimately bore little or no resemblance to the truth. Some of us tin hatters were convinced of this from the beginning, but we were tin hatters, after all.

What has happened to me is a rapidly accelerating  mistrust in anything I read, watch, or listen to from a wide variety of media sources. I would add into this local news sources paid for from the public purse where lies, intentions, and half truths are presented as facts, done deeds, or reality, when usually, it is more often than not just politicians passing wind.

Have you noticed how politicians can milk an announcement twice a year for 4 years and at the end of the day their great proposal never sees the light of day? Incompetence or deliberate manipulation? I’ll leave it up to you to decide.

What I really struggle with, though, is the endless amount of “bad news” that is out there. Why is so much bad news reported? Because we are addicted it. Be it earthquakes with associated gruesome pictures, war zones likewise, people killed in freak accidents, young sportsmen dropping dead on the field. Psychologists have studied this and there is deep within or psyches a negativity bias. In practice, what this means is that our brains are wired to pay  more attention to negative news than to positive news. Negative news  impacts on us in a way that good news doesn’t. It’s probably an evolutionary thing, but never in the history of mankind have we been flooded with newsfeeds to the extent we are today. No wonder mental health problems are around every corner.

So what can we do to combat this?  First of all, cut down the amount of news we are exposed to. Do we really need to know what a member of the royal family had for breakfast? Do we need to follow the lives of celebrities, their divorces and antics? Do we need to spend 16 hours a day with our mobile devices in our hands in case we miss the latest  disaster?

Secondly, don’t start your day reading bad news. 3 minutes of bad news first thing in the morning can increase the probability of having a bad day by over 25%.

Thirdly, be more selective about your news sources. Often the first dozen Facebook feeds you see will be negative news stories. Wean yourself off this.

Keep your phone on mute when you don’t need them constantly disturbing you with buzzing or pinging.

And perhaps the most important thing is to be discriminating about the content of the constant news feeds, especially if a politician is writing it.

Thank you for taking the time to read this article. Do remember to come back and check The Euro Weekly News website for all your up-to-date local and international news stories. Remember, you can also follow us on Facebook and Instagram.   

Written by

Bill Anderson

Bill Anderson is a Councillor with the Grupo Populares de Mijas, radio host and columnist for the Euro Weekly News