I first learned this from my Cardiac Surgeon. In fact, this was part of my instructions in preparation for surgery: “As much as possible decrease your exposure to stress and negative situations, even movies. Stress has been shown to increase spasm of the vessels/arteries.” When we talked about it, she mentioned the news as well.
Up until that time, I had been a bit of a news junkie, listening to a lot of talk radio. On reflection, I began to see how all that news was affecting me. Creating tension and anxiety for me. It became a bit of an addiction.
And there’s the secret!
The secret that the media, in all forms, does not want you to realize. The media would like you to believe the world is in constant crisis so that you’ll keep watching and listening. They want you riled up because then you’ll want to know more. You’re hooked. And you’re stressed out.
(Side note: I could feel my neck muscles bunching up as I wrote that paragraph.)
As a society, it seems that we are addicted to this news. Nearly every doctor’s office has a television to some news channel blaring the same news stories every 10 – 15 minutes. If you wind up waiting long for your doctor, you can be totally stressed by the time you see the doctor. And then they wonder why your blood pressure is elevated. I’m grateful to have my doctor, she does not allow television in the waiting room!
Symptoms of Stress
Not everyone will recognize stress in their life as it can manifest with differing symptoms. Here are some of the symptoms that stress can cause:
- Headaches or migraines
- Low energy, fatigue
- Impaired immunity resulting in an increase in allergy symptoms, colds, and infections
- Abdominal issues – stomach upset, diarrhea, constipation
- Elevated blood pressure
- Rapid heart beat
- Chest pain
Many of those symptoms trace back to the increase in spasming of vessels and arteries in the body that my surgeon talked about. The results, in extreme cases, can be severe. In fact, during the 2016 election cycle, I had a number friends who were reading and sharing everything political on Facebook. It turned out that the two people who were sharing the most both wound up in the hospital with heart issues. Coincidence? Don’t think so.
What one action will reduce your stress and give you a calmer life? Turning off the news. Stay informed, just don’t be a news junkie!
What are your thoughts? Have you noticed a negative effect of too much news on you?
The title of this blog is "Choose A Happy, Healthy, and Positive Life" but I don't want anyone to think that I'm perfect or that I've got it all together. I chose this title to help me become happier, healthier and more positive. I chose it as a way to remind myself and others of what we should strive for. I am actually proud to say that I am not perfect. After all, what else would I have to work on if I were perfect?