What Negative News Is Doing to Your Health and How You Can Stop It

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NO NEWS CAN BE GOOD NEWS

At some point recently, you have probably felt as though the world was coming to an end. It is almost impossible to get online without being force-fed news of the latest world disaster. Buzzes, tweets, notifications, news feeds and “fake news” all create a constant barrage of headlines detailing shootings, terrorist attacks, hate crimes, plane crashes, political upheaval, and human rights violations that seem almost impossible to escape.

Our exposure and awareness of such tragedies is unprecedented. Our 24-hour news cycle now seeks our attention incessantly through a multitude of channels, and with a speed and frequency that was previously unimaginable.

We no longer just receive the daily paper or watch the six o’clock news. Instead, we are bombarded by notifications and alerts, our attention held hostage by headlines in news feeds and timelines, and in many cases we find ourselves assaulted by our peers’ angst, anger, and disappointment in the form of statuses, tweets, and captions.

Although there are benefits to being better informed, the amount and frequency of such negative and emotionally-charged news can take a serious toll on our mental health.

DO WE KNOW TOO MUCH?

It is not unusual to feel down or pessimistic after watching the news, however some research has shown that exposure to violent and negative media can increase your chances of stress, anxiety, depression and even PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder).

Other research also suggest that such negative news may impact your mood, and the way in which you perceive and interact with the world. For example, internalizing the anxiety or sadness created by a news story may subconsciously make you more aware of negative or threatening events, and as a result make you more likely to classify neutral stimuli as dangerous or threatening in the future.

Furthermore, research concerning social media use found that users who most frequently checked social media throughout the week were 2.7 times more likely to experience depression.

FINDING FREEDOM FROM THE NEWS

Here at Freedom we love our ever changing digital world, and appreciate the benefits afforded by our new technologies. However, we also believe that with the development of new technology, we need to be conscientious about our uses and practices – making sure our technology continues to help rather than harm us.

If you feel like you could use a vacation from headlines and negativity, Freedom can help.

Use Freedom to block the following for a set period of time across all your devices:

  • News apps
  • Social media platforms
  • News sites
  • Push notifications
  • Email alerts

With Freedom you can create custom block lists of anything you need a break from, or choose from common preset blocks.

Decide when you want to view the news by setting the time, duration, and devices affected for your blocks. You can even schedule blocks in advance, or use the recurring session option to create a recurring schedule of blocks.

Restore balance, and give yourself the peace of mind you need and deserve.

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