Listen: TMI & Journaling. Fighting against an “Infodemic”

Transcript: It is 2021, where the internet and smartphones have given us the power to access anything with just a single touch. However, it is actually a poisoned chalice.

This world was never meant to be a bed of roses. But none of us ever imagined witnessing a global pandemic, the never-ending days of lockdown, crowded streets and airports turning into a ghost town, and now with the gradual lifting and/or re-implementations of restrictions throughout the world, we are compelled to embrace this “new normal.” However, fighting against an “infodemic” than the pandemic itself seems more challenging.

I’m Gretchen, and today, I am here with you to discuss ways to handle such an unprecedented crisis and cope with your thoughts while staying informed.

First, let us agree that it is essential to be familiar with the happenings around us. Still, not every individual can put up with an overdose of information in an equally graceful manner. To put it simply, while it is vital to stay updated on the necessary precautions we need to undertake during this pandemic, checking up on the death toll and active cases every 3 hours is TMI. Those statistics are meant to be scrutinized by higher authorities to impose and lift restrictions accordingly. So sit back, wear a mask and stay safe.

Next, seeing is not always believing. The internet empowers individuals with the potential to change the perception. 

A similar trend has been noticed throughout the pandemic. Unnecessary fear-mongering puts people into hyper-anxiety, which eventually damages their critical thinking abilities. Thus it is necessary to practice mindfulness while using social media.

The thing about anxiety is that you never know when it is going to crop back up. You could be feeling fine, and then all of a sudden, it is back. Journaling helps us remain accountable to ourselves, our feelings, purpose, and plan. Journaling also helps you better organize your thoughts and information received. 

Keep the Dr Google away. So, here is the thing. Searching for the most friendly dog breed, the best place to visit under $500 and the mug cake recipe on Google or any other social platform seem like fun ideas. But the internet cannot be a substitute for a doctor or medical advisor. It merely generalizes the information for everyone. In cases of any health issues – both emotional and physical, Googling your symptoms will only lead to further complexities and add to your anxiety. 

Last but not least, look at the sky – it is okay to feel blue sometimes.

Allow yourself to feel. Do not entirely block your inner thoughts and conscience. You are the sky, and all your feelings and thoughts inside your head are passing clouds. Nothing in this world is permanent. 

But that is alright. It is also okay to watch an animated movie all by yourself; to mute WhatsApp notifications; to unsubscribe that YouTube channel, to laugh at an old photograph from school days; to cherish a hot cup of coffee and your favourite book amidst the chaos called life. Sip, smell and smile. It’s all worthwhile.