A few tips that I learned from my attempt to spend a week free from political news:
- Breaking News is Bogus: Of all the sneaky ways that news outlets try to catch our attention, the lure of BREAKING NEWS is one of the worst. Really, there’s no such thing. Not these days when the news is always breaking. The same goes for CNN’s disingenuous banner: “This Just In!” This marketing ploy makes us feel that when we’re not watching, we’re missing something important. Well, this just in: we’re not.
- Strive For Balance: I’m going to make more of an effort to distinguish between news sources that report what’s happening and those that recycle this information through “analysis.” Political pundits only seem interested in two things these days: dissecting the latest polls or stoking the fires of the latest outrage. Neither practice offers much in the way of meaningful information. For this reason, I’m going to spend a lot more time reading print newspapers and listening to NPR and less time following the knee-jerk commentary on political blogs and cable news.
- Enjoy The Silence: Something I’ve been doing a lot more of this week, and I’ve definitely seen a difference. I’m calmer, less moody, and more reflective. I’ve also found myself seeking out ways to maintain this state of mind in other parts of my day: Worked at a coffee shop instead of the office, watched Australia crush Qatar in the World Cup qualifying game during lunch, listened to Kanye West’s “Love Lockdown” until it became my favorite new workout track at the gym.
Not surprisingly, my love for my candidate hasn’t waned at all this week. My disgust for his opponent also hasn’t keep me up at night. Is it possible to remain engaged in all this madness without letting it take over? We’ll see.
And finally, thanks to my friends and fellow TBoH readers (all three of you!) for the support and good cheer this week. Now with less than three weeks until the election, I’m going to get back to work. In the words of my good pal, Spock Obama: Live Long and Prosper.