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Staying Real Amid Fake News in Social Media

Reading the news can have a powerful negative effect on our minds. Whether you’re reading it, watching it or listening to it. It can get overwhelming, since news and other information is so freely available right now. You may not know who to believe or how to organize the information you are taking in.

It affects not only your mood, but your health and decisions as well. However, one of the reasons we give for exposing ourselves to it is: “I need to know what’s going on in the world!”

But, when you ask yourself why you need to know, you may find that a weak argument. Certainly, it’s important to know about world events that will have an impact on your own life or what you could do for others.

But knowing the details of tragedies that have happened to people you don’t know and can’t help, serve no purpose.

All that does is cause pain, stress, fear and other negative effects – in your own life. Whether the news is real or fake, the effects it has on your psyche is measurable and usually very negative.

Reason for the Addiction

Do you find yourself unconsciously reaching for your phone and opening the Facebook App to check out the latest headlines?

Do you find yourself scrolling through Twitter whenever you’re bored or waiting in line at the bank?

Do you find yourself browsing YouTube videos, looking for a juicy debate about world problems to watch?

The reason you’re hooked on these comments is the same reason people become hooked on world events, news coverage of tragedies, and gossip. It’s also the same reason people ride rollercoasters and watch horror movies. It’s chemical.

Every time you expose yourself to something that causes a negative emotion in you, your cells are getting a “hit” of chemicals. These stress chemicals provide a burst of energy since they’re designed to help us fight or run away. And as we produce regular supplies of these chemicals, our cells grow additional receptors for them.

This means they need more of the molecules from the chemicals – to “feed” those new receptors. This is experienced by the individual as an impulse to expose themselves to more of whatever produces those chemicals. You’ve probably heard of the term “adrenaline junkie” – it doesn’t apply only to physical adventure experiences.

Each time you feel a powerful emotion, like anger, joy, excitement, fear etc. – notice the sensations in your body. What you’re feeling (and what your conscious mind is interpreting as emotion) is the effect of the stress chemicals coursing through your bloodstream.

Every time you find yourself justifying why you should browse social media for the news or read a negative article on your favorite App, you are finding ways to justify that hit. If you can’t stop allowing yourself to be exposed to negativity, chances are you have an addiction to the stress chemicals.

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The truth is, you have no way of knowing that what you’re reading is accurate. With the amount of information that is out there on a daily basis, it is impossible to keep track of reliability. This means that when you react, either positively or negatively, to a piece of news, you have no idea whether it actually happened or not.

This means that you may be tormenting yourself for no reason. Reading news all the time and reacting negatively to it, is an addiction. Sometimes, it’s as bad as a smoking or drinking addiction. It’s up to you to recognize that you have a problem and get the help you need.

If you find yourself unable to resist reading stuff that other people have written, and feeling a range of bad feelings as a result, you may want to take back control. This is not about willpower and dragging yourself away; there is a reason you’re feeling this compulsion, and when you resolve that, you will no longer be interested never mind feel emotionally affected by the news, whether fake or real.

The Solution with FasterEFT

The first step in any addiction is recognizing it. Take an honest look at the reasons you give yourself for exposing yourself to negativity. Unless you are able to help the victims of an event, or are prepared to take action to change the law, there is no need for you to focus on it.

The most you need to know is the basic headlines. And even then, there’s no need to dwell on them. There’s no need to discuss them or focus on them in any other way – unless you can help. And if you can help, then feeling stressed about it won’t be useful. You’ll need to be in a calm state to be of benefit.

The second step is to use FasterEFT to change the structure in your subconscious that is supporting your current addiction. For more details on addressing addiction, visit the Addiction category or watch the FasterEFT and Addiction Playlist on YouTube.

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