living-on-sunshineI know, I know. You’re sick of hearing the word ‘wellness’ or maybe it’s the phrase ‘wellness lifestyle’ that makes you grind your teeth. But it’s a real thing and, as I get older and perhaps wiser, I find myself trying to surround myself with more good than bad.

That includes food, exercise and what I watch and listen to. More and more, when it’s time for the local news just before bedtime, I find myself watching the umpteenth re-run of “Seinfeld” instead. That show unfailingly makes me laugh and feel good and that’s a priceless gift. Seinfeld and Larry David deserve all that money.

I realize this may sound out of character coming from a television producer who works on a crime/murder broadcast but that’s just my point. I do enjoy what I do but, as I write and produce these stories, I try to concentrate on the relationships of those involved in crimes rather than the murders themselves. What drives a person to murder another is something I still find fascinating. And you’ll perhaps be heartened to know that, for every killer out there, there are tons more noble cops, lawyers and family members trying to do the right thing.

That said, in my quieter moments or reflection, I try to live a more healthy lifestyle. I don’t instantly read my email the moment I wake up and I certainly do not listen to all news radio or watch any of the morning shows. I also don’t want to read a newspaper immediately.

What I do instead is look at my overnight Instagram feed which, thanks to those I follow, is filled with beautiful photos of people and landscapes from all over the world.

It’s a quiet and refreshing way to ease into the day. I also listen to nature sounds radio on Pandora and then, at some point, I begin to read the New York Times and listen to NPR radio. Most days, I find a lot of it fascinating but, on other days, the news from around the world is so depressing that I just turn the page or turn it off.

I contribute money to worthy causes but, other than that, there’s not much I personally can do about the bombing of Aleppo or the hurricane that hit Haiti. I feel for those people but I find myself not wanting to dwell on all that suffering. It’s mentally draining and, well, not too healthy to gorge on, in my opinion.

If that makes me shallow, so be it. We all need to find a way to survive that feeds our souls and, after a lifetime of being on the front lines of news, I find myself turning away. Besides, I live in New York so I get all the reality I need on my subway commute each morning.

  1. Mike Murphy says:

    Well said Paul. But I do some of the things you avoid. I have to read my paper every morning while having my coffee. Also, I am a news addict, and watch cable news every evening. I suppose because you did spend a lifetime working with and about the news, it’s understandable. When the election is over, I will wean myself off the nightly cable news shows. I have always been a news junkie, and now that I think back over my life, I regret not going into journalism as you did after we left college. Don’t get me wrong. I had a successful 40 year career in healthcare. But I just feel I missed out on something.

  2. Paul says:

    Hey Mike, good to hear from you. I still read the morning Times but not right away and I skip over articles that are depressing and realize there’s nothing I can do short of send money. I’ve always been a news junkie too and still am but I care less than ever about that fire in the Bronx that’s meaningless except to those involved…stories like that. If you can’t entertain me or make me care, I turn the page. Journalism has been great for me of course….front seat on life!

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