Loretta LaRoche: Too much news may be hazardous to your health

Loretta LaRoche

I have never been able to understand someone’s need to have the news on all day long.

I realize that we are in an era when information is instantly accessible. But listening to reports on murder, drug trafficking, political kickbacks, sexual infidelities and other heinous acts do not need to be part of our daily routine. In fact, hearing bad news or even having it in the background can be detrimental to your well-being. After a while, you start to think that the world is going to hell in a hand basket.

At one time, our awareness of unsavory acts was limited. But now you can hear about a scam that some goat herders in outer Mongolia pulled off. There are reporters at the ready in almost every corner of the Earth. Now you can even find out what the precipitation might be in the Aleutian Islands, just in case you have a hankering to go there after you go food shopping.

Even if you don’t watch a lot of news, you can almost count on the fact that someone will share it with you, whether you like it or not. I find that many people are now of the mindset that the world has gotten to be a very dangerous place. What they fail to recognize is that bad events have been happening since the beginning of time.

I would not want to have been a serf living in a village that Attila the Hun swept through. The only way the villagers could have been alerted is if someone nearby had a fast horse, was a trained marathoner or had a pigeon that had rocket boosters on its wings.

Tidal waves, volcanoes erupting, earthquakes, hurricanes and typhoons, too, have been a part of the Earth’s patterns since the beginning of time. Fortunately, the human race has continued to survive and thrive.

Keeping that in mind is difficult if we don’t give ourselves a break from bad news. It also sets you up to continually worry about what might happen next.

We have often heard that murder and mayhem are what sells. But perhaps sprinkling some acts of kindness and compassion throughout the daily newscasts might just help us all physically, mentally and spiritually. It might even make us all feel better about one another.

Author, humorist, PBS star and Fortune 500 trainer Loretta LaRoche lives in Plymouth, Mass. To share your pet peeves, questions or comments, write to The Humor Potential, 50 Court St., Plymouth 02360, send e-mail to getalife@lorettalaroche.com, visit the Web site at www.stressed.com, or call toll-free 800-99-TADAH (82324).