“Be your own editor” is a key piece of advice we give to news users. The words mean something if you have a journalism background. But everyone else is usually left wondering “Right. How?”
Instead of being a “news editor,” think about being a “news eater.” You consume news and you consume food. But food is a much more appealing subject.
Your News Diet
Like everyone else we try to eat a healthy diet including a variety of things from the major groups. We’re not averse to a few treats and guilty pleasures, and yeah, sometimes we get a craving for one thing or another. Some days or weeks are better than others but you try to balance it out over time.
Variety: Actively seek a mix food vs. just consuming what happens to end up in front of you. It’s good to be picky about what you’re consuming and why it’s even on that day’s menu. Avoid a steady diet of any one type of thing no matter how much you think you love it. And try new things — that’s how we learn what’s out there even if we don’t have it regularly.
Ingredients and Quality: Some brands and establishments are pretty reputable because they care about the quality of their product. Others are mostly OK though you wouldn’t eat them all the time. Many more are sketchy or downright questionable; they don’t really care what’s in it as long as you eat it. Finally there are the things that you just know are only going to make you feel gross, flabby or stupid.
Guilty Pleasures: What’s life without dessert? You can enjoy the good and junky treats, within reason of course. Too many or too often and you know how that will turn out. But sure, live a little.
You Control Your Own News Diet
It’s changing but as we said at the start, you have to take the long view to really make it work. You get to keep trying as much as you like because dinner is served 24/7, after all.