I haven’t consumed news since 2016.
I don't watch the news on TV, I don't listen to the news on the radio, I don't read newspapers, nor do I read the news online or through an app.
I’ve permanently banned the news from my life.
And like most people who did the same, I feel much better without news.
I’m not an isolated case, an increasing part of the world population is avoiding the news: from 29% in 2017 to 38% in 2022 according to the digital news report from Reuters.
Here are the most common reasons why more people avoid the news :
- 43% say there is too much politics and Covid-19 (the report was done during the pandemic)
- 36% say news have negative effect on their mood
- 29% say they’re worn out by the amount of news
- 29% say the news is untrustworthy or biased
- 17% say it leads to arguments they’re rather avoid
- 16% say there’s nothing they can do with the information
In this article, I cover why quitting the news is one of the best gift you can do to yourself.
The 4 most compelling reasons to quit the news
1. The negativity from the news is a poison for the mind
News is a constant whisper in our ears.
But not any whisper. A whisper focused on the negative.
Global recession accelerates
Skyrocketing inflation: a threat to the Economy
Unprecedented employment crisis
New political scandal erupts
War tensions escalate in Ukraine
New wave of protests break out in Paris
Rising crime rates in big cities
Missing child in the country
Is that what we call great food for the mind?
Nope, that’s junk food for the mind.
News seeds negative beliefs that spoil our lives
News is a belief builder.
Each headline, each story, shapes our perception of the world and our beliefs.
That’s a big problem since beliefs play a major role in our lives:
- Beliefs influence our health. The Placebo effect is a simple demonstration of that.
- Beliefs influence our relationships: shaping how we connect, trust, and communicate with others.
- Beliefs influence our career or business: ability to get a raise, promotion, your business’ growth, revenue, etc.
- Beliefs shape how we think, guide our decisions and lead our actions.
When you hear every day that we're going through a big employment crisis and that it's getting harder and harder to find a job. Does this help jobseekers find work?
Now, take someone who doesn’t consume any form of news.
This person’s mind isn’t tainted by the negative thoughts and beliefs from the news. She will be more likely to find a job.
That’s the “They didn’t know it was impossible, so they did it” by Mark Twain.
Like the great Derek Sivers says : "Beliefs are placebos, Believe whatever works for you."
The negative beliefs created by the news don’t serve us, at all. They tear us down.
In this world of over-information, being selectively ignorant is a superpower to reach our goals.
News creates stress and anxiety
Research shows that watching or reading the news can make our daily stress and anxiety much worse.
The American Psychological Association cites a 60% increase in anxiety due to the inundation of negative news.
Again, it's like eating junk food for the mind, filling us with fear and pessimism.
News contributes to spread racism and hatred
In most countries including France, racism is more prevalent in rural areas where the presence of people of foreign origin is very low or non-existent.
In these areas, many people fear such people, even though they are hardly ever likely to come across them.
By constantly portraying people of foreign origin as delinquents or terrorists, the news seeds fear in the minds of rural people, which increases racism in these areas.
2. Consuming the news doesn’t lead to any accomplishment
Let’s say you’ve heard that news story about another tragic event that happened somewhere.
Except talking about it with people, what do you do with this information?
When was the last time you made an important life decision based on a news story?
Consuming the news is not actionable.
News is useless to help you determine what to do with your life.
Like social media or binge-watching, news maintains us in a state of passive consumers, not creators or entrepreneurs.
Passive consumption doesn’t make any change to the world nor in our lives.
Action or creation do.
We don’t make any positive change to the world by consuming the news. Nor to ourselves.
Want to positively impact the world? Turn off the news, save your time, save your mind and start creating.
3. The news is not just facts but also misinformation, propaganda and bias
If you think the media just "reports the news", think again.
Manufacturing Consent, the famous groundbreaking book by Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Herman, demonstrates a totally different reality.
Backed by years of research and academic rigor, the book shows how media serve as propaganda machines, leading to a more obedient and less questioning public.
It’s supported by studies from the Pew Research Center, which have shown that news organizations are influenced by political and corporate agendas.
Here's the deal: Media doesn't just tell you what happened, it shapes how you think about it.
For example, the way news is reported can fuel public fear, perpetuate biases, or even justify wars.
This is what "Manufacturing Consent" means: media often crafts narratives that serve the powerful, not necessarily the public.
Not only are news bad for our minds, but they're often biased too.
Save your time, save your mind, quit the news.
4. The news fuels cheap talk, zero change, and negativity loops
Let's be real: a major reason people watch the news is to have something to discuss with others who do the same.
The news gives people topics to discuss with friends, family, colleagues.
People have something to say now. A new headline to discuss.
"Did you hear?"
"Can you believe?"
Like I said, the news is like fast food for the mind. Great for small talk, not great for your well-being.
So you chat in the elevator about the latest crisis.
You just spread the stress, the worry.
It's a cycle.
Instead, imagine conversations about ideas, dreams, or even silence in mindful presence.
That's a vibe that elevates, not drains.
The 7 main benefits of quitting the news
You feel calmer, less stressed & more optimistic
News is a constant noise, a stressor that keeps your mind in a state of alert.
By quitting the news, you dramatically reduce your stress and find yourself surrounded by a more positive vision on life.
You'll feel calmer and your mood will improve.
You regain your time
Every minute spent on the news is a minute lost.
Quit the news, and you'll see how much time you actually have.
Now, there's space for that book, that run, that course or project you've been neglecting.
You boost your focus and productivity
Without the news bombarding you with distractions, your attention isn't split.
You can focus completely on what truly matters to you.
And that’s a game-changer to live more intentionally.
You reclaim your thoughts
News influence your thoughts.
Cut it out, and your thoughts become your own again, independent and uninfluenced.
You have deeper conversations
"Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events, small minds discuss people." - Eleanor Roosevelt.
Gone will be the shallow chats about current events.
In their place, better discussions about ideas, projects or just anything more interesting than the damn news.
You have more space for introspection
The news tells you what to care about.
But without it, you can discover what you're really passionate about, what truly lights your fire.
You live more mindfully
Without the news, you'll live in the present moment, not in the worries of the world.
You'll breathe deeper, sleep better, live fuller.
Quit the news, and watch yourself flourish.
Isn’t it selfish to quit the news?
You might think, "Isn't this self-centered?", "Shouldn't I be aware of the world's suffering?", "Isn't this just ignoring reality?"
Let's unpack this.
Self-care isn't selfish
First, taking care of your mental health isn't selfish.
A calm mind brings much more to the world than a stressed one.
Being aware of “the news” doesn’t make you help anyone
Since most news stories offer no actionable steps, you're left feeling powerless, not purposeful.
Instead of stressing over global events, focus on what’s in your control.
That’s where real change happens.
No news = more time and space to create (real) value
The news trains us to be passive consumers, not creators.
When quitting the news, the mental space and time you gain allows you to create value to others.
You’ll be much more altruistic without the news than with it.
Quitting the news isn't selfish.
It's self-awareness. It's intentional living.
It's understanding where you can make a real difference.
You won’t miss out if you quit the news
A lot of people think they’ll miss important information and feel disconnected if they quit the news.
Don’t worry (at all) for that, essential information always finds its path to you.
I’ve never missed out any significant information in 7 years.
In our hyper-connected world, significant information finds its own path to you, seeking us out through social networks, shared by friends, family, or colleagues.
Cutting out the news doesn't mean you'll be uninformed.
On the contrary, you might find yourself more in tune with what truly matters.
Essential news will reach you, one way or another.
When you quit the news, you’re not giving up the information, you’re giving up the noise. The non-stop, relentless bombardment of negativity, fear, and anxiety.
Quitting the news is not about missing out. It's about stepping up - to a life of clarity and purpose.
The mini guide to quitting the news
Here's how to ban the news out of your life:
- Delete news apps from your phone
- Stop listening to the news on radio, that's the worst way to start your day
- Stop watching the news on TV (and throw away your TV)
- Don't buy newspapers
- Never come back to the news
Try it for two weeks first and then reflect.
The chances are extremely high that you won't miss anything from the news.
In this world of over-information and over-distraction, being selectively ignorant has never been so important to live a meaningful and intentional life.
News is one of the thousands of distractions that take us away from our true nature of creators.
When you quit the news, you cut out the noise and free up space to achieve 10x more meaningful things. Things that elevate your life, not drag it down.
You regain your freedom, mental space and time to live a better, more intentional life.
That's a gift to yourself and others.