Can You Manage “Extreme” Information?

For those of us in job transition, we know times can be tough and challenging. Among our other job transition activities, we watch, listen, and read the headlines looking for news that things are getting better.

Staying positive and motivated is so very important after job loss. But are we aware of how we are influenced by the way that news is reported to us? (Link: It’s easier to stay motivated when you have a plan)

When the news media makes job and economic reports dramatic — which they DO by the words they choose as well as how they say them — they are trying to trigger emotions that make us more interested or attentive to what they are saying. If we pay attention and act like a good audience, they make more money from their advertisers.

Words used in media
A "Wordle" diagram of a series of typical news headlines

Since this is how the business of media works, it is up to us to understand and navigate the information we are provided, and not let ourselves be unnecessarily influenced by extreme language.

We know times are tough. Does it really help anyone when the media says that negative things are “skyrocketing”? “Soaring”? “Exploding”? Or when positive things are “plummeting”? “Sinking”? “Failing”?

How much do you agree that your emotions and thoughts are influenced by the how the news is written and delivered to you?


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