When I was a kid my family had a little ritual on Sunday mornings. My mum would bring home delicious bread and pastries from the bakery and we had breakfast together around the kitchen table. There wasn’t much talking however. Not because we didn’t like talking to each other–we did. But part of that little ritual was that we all brought our own things to read. Every now and then my dad would share news he found particularly interesting which we all then discussed at length.
He still reads the news everyday and occasionally sends me articles to read. I don’t follow the news however. While it’s important to be interested in the world around me, when I’m confronted with anything news-related I usually ask myself: “Should I care about this?”
If something is really important and worth knowing I’ll find out about it sooner or later. Last year was an exception as I visited RNZ pretty much every day to get a status update on the situation in New Zealand during the COVID-19 pandemic. Even then, however, I started to limit the amount of times I’d seek out information in order to protect my mental health. I noticed the less news I read, the better I felt. This is especially true since these days they are usually filled with negativity and pessimism. Two things I don’t need in my life.
What I learnt from reading Factfulness is that things aren’t as bleak as the media make them out to be–quite the opposite actually. Even so I’ll still refrain from reading the news unless it’s beautiful news.