Sometimes when it feels like there’s so much negativity everywhere, it’s important to know how to not let it take over your entire life.
There are days when there’s something awful going on somewhere in the world, or even near you, and that’s all anyone is talking about. As important as that thing may be, it’s also very important to not let yourself drown in bad news. While at times it’s essential to keep up with the latest events or updates, you have to know your limits and focus on what you can control. It’s good to look around you and to remember all the good things you still have. All the while, you can still absolutely care about the events in the world. Compassion is the key to being a decent human being, but you can’t get out of yourself and do the impossible now, can you? Some people’s mental health is fragile. The things going on around them that don’t involve them personally will still affect their daily existence. Hence, it’s nice to find ways to care about yourself and take time out of your day to check in with yourself.
Meditation’s perhaps the most obvious “solution” but also probably the most important. Mindfulness has been known to help so many people get in touch with their feelings and understand their thoughts better. It’s not about controlling what you’re thinking, it’s more so about finding out where those thoughts are coming from and how to face unwanted thoughts properly. Set the negativity in its rightful place and don’t overthink everything. Emotional stability is no easy feat. However, it is something that you need to look into and through meditation that might just be possible after some time. You can start small by doing five minutes per day just to take time to breathe and relax. Reflecting on the day through a positive lens, breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth, set to the calm background music that’s often associated with mediation can all be such help for your mental health. No denying that the results of meditation have been well documented and there are hundreds of apps available for you to start whenever you’re ready.
Modify the Way You Consume Media
If you’re constantly checking news and even have your “breaking news” alert on then it’s probably best to take a step back. It naturally depends on the specific situation you’re in but spending this much time and focus on every news alert can’t be good for you ultimately. Your anxiety will only increase in such situations. It might be best to just change your notification settings and take some time away from the screen. It’s okay to just check the news once or twice per day at most. “Doom scrolling” through social media can also be hugely detrimental. Very little good can come from doing such a thing. Again, in some situations social media can actually be used as a tool to spread important information but, in case you haven’t noticed yet, most of what comes out of it is deeply negative. Make sure you’re taking in only slight doses of news every day and take time to be with friends or family instead.
Consume Unrelated Art
Art is one of the greatest things humanity has ever come up with. Whether you’re watching a comedy film, listening to a happy-go-lucky song, or reading an interesting book, it can all help to take your mind off things. This all relates to you taking time to yourself. During the pandemic, everybody saw just how important the art we consume is. Once everyone was stuck in lockdown, movies, music, books and other forms of art became essential to get through some tough and scary days. The same thing could be applied about everything in relation to the beginning of the pandemic as well. It became all too obvious that sometimes it might be best for you to not check your Twitter feed for the 145th time or to check the number of infected people yet again, but perhaps take two hours and watch a film from before everything went berserk.
It’s so important to have a shared feeling of compassion for whoever’s going through tough times. But additionally, it’s also very important on an individual level to know when to take a moment to breathe and recall that you are just one person who doesn’t have control over everything in the world.
Illustration: Mary Long/shutterstock
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