I stopped watching the news recently.  Well, when I say stopped, I've cut down from seven days a week keeping up with news and current events, to two days per week.  And the one day I would take time to read the paper, well, I don't read the paper anymore.  All this is because I'm... I want to say this without sounding like I'm complaining, but I think it's an impossibility.  No, I'm not complaining but I am stating a fact, or at least a conclusion I've come to in the last several weeks.

I'm sick and tired of all the BS negativity that gets passed off as news nowadays.  I'm also tired of the one-sided, pre-scripted BS that "qualifies" as "responsible journalism".  So the way I figured it, I had two choices.  One, I could continue to watch it and be dragged down into the miasma of negativity they wish to keep my mind poisoned with by the constant panic mongering they're peddling, or... and this is the one that really hurts them when enough of us do it, I could choose to just switch the damn TV off.

The reason I chose to do it, and I'm actually not against watching television, is because of the utter focus news and current affairs shows have, or should I rephrase that as obsession, with forcing negativity into the space between our ears.  Because of that, we're hypnotised into choosing to believe that only bad stuff happens in the world.  And yes, newspapers are just as guilty of it.  Why?  Fir the same reason we love horror movies.  We love to be scared.

If you don't believe me, go through the newspaper you read most often.  Divide every story into three categories.  Positive, negative and educational/instructive.  I threw in the third category just to give you an extra option, but I'll tell you now that the overwhelming majority of stories will go into just one category.

For example, they may sat that 40,000 Australians (I should point out that this is an arbitrary number I've pulled out of thin air for the purposes of this post, but I'm hoping you'll get the picture as you continue to read) per year are ripped off over the internet (I usually specify Aussies only because I am one).  When you realise that with a population of 22,000,000, as a fairly small nation in the grand scheme of things, that sounds like a lot and I won't disagree that it's not.  But it's what stories like that don't say that is where it gets really interesting.  The story won't tell you how much they've been ripped off by (I believe the figure to be under a $10 value in most cases, but I could have read an inaccurate set of figures).  It also fails to mention that while 40,000 people may have been ripped off in the last year, but it doesn't go into any detail about the more than 100 million transactions that occurred where Aussies weren't ripped off (not an arbitrary number).  Do the numbers and you actually work out that it's genuinely a very small percentage of people that are doing the wrong thing online.

Another example is how the news program may focus on the story of a murder.  Quite often, it will take some time for background information on the victim to come to light (and I am in no way condoning the act of murder here).  But unless the victim was a member of a well-known/notorious criminal family or organization, the victim's background is overlooked by the media, or, and this is one of my favourite tricks that they use, at the end of the story, in an almost "by the way" sort of tone and usually spoken at a quieter volume, the reporter may say, "The victim was known to the police."  While the importance of broadcasting this type of information can be legitimately argued, my point is how many times do you see a news broadcast where the opening story is about how many people weren't murdered or killed in car accidents today?

So that's why I switched it off for at least five out of seven nights a week.  Some nights, it never goes on at all, but most nights it's only on for a couple of hours to watch shows that we really do like.

And you may have noticed I used the word "hypnotised" earlier instead of brainwashed.  That's because the light quality emitted from a TV, coupled together with it broadcasting flickering images (yes, regardless of the fact that modern televisions don't "flicker") do send your brain into the alpha brainwave state - a state of hypnosis.  In other words, it's a light trance state where you're very suggestable.

So the question is now, if you're in that light trance state where you are actually highly suggestable, and if almost all the information in front of you is entirely negative, then what is your emotional state, or mindset going to be?  How are things like your problem solving ability going to be affected?

Think about it, and I mean actually think about it.  Is it any wonder why, when you think about it, that when you look at the world around you, you see so much lack, so much attrition in life. I'm not saying that attrition doesn't exist, but lack doesn't have to.

That's why, to revisit an earlier example, the media so often targets stories like how many people get ripped off on the internet. 

Why would they focus like that?  Easy answer is that they don't like the net.  It's perceived as a threat.  Let's face it, it's more interactive, so your mind is likely to be more awake, more people use the net as opposed to just watching TV.  But here's something that really scares the network execs. 

Advertising.

Yep.  Advertising.  It's cheaper online than offline and it reaches more people which makes it a threat to their advertising revenue.  Also, they like to convince brick and mortar businesses that online businesses are a threat because they're cheaper.  While that might be true, particularly of companies like Amazon which sell a lot of physical products, most online businesses I've dealt with deal with digital products.  In other words, there is no competition because they're completely different markets.

But try telling that to the traditional media.  The thought of a public that's awake terrifies them.  The thought of a public that's turning off their negativity terrifies them too, because when you stop the diet of negativity, you're a lot less afraid than you used to be, and when you're less afraid you can start to live fearlessly.  If you're not afraid, they can't bully you into fearful submission.  When you're not swallowing endless amounts of negativity, you start to see your problems in a new way, a way in which you can start to see problems as solvable, a way in which they're not really problems at all, but challenges to help prevent us from being bored.

And when you start to see things that way, then that's when you start to manage your assets effectively.  And if there's one thing out of all this that I really want you to remember, then it's that your most important and effective asset of all is you and your attitude.  So is your most important asset really an asset or is it a liability?  That's up to you to decide.



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    G'day everyone.  I'm an Aussie Life Coach, Clinical Hypnotist (www.americanallianceofhypnotists.org)  and author with a passion for making every relationship in our lives the best it can be.   I work at local, state, national and international levels.  I am also a Callahan Techniques Thought Field Therapy practitioner trained by Eugene Piccinotti TFT - dx, and I studied Neuro Linguistic Programming Master Practitioner Level (MNLP) under Steve G Jones at the American University of Neuro-Linguistic Programming
    (http://www.aunlp.org).  In other words, as a coach, I'll use whatever I have to use to help you to make the changes you want to make.