Wearing dice on my head since 2008 Programmer, engineer, scientist, critic, gamer, dreamer, and kid-at-heart. Randomly amazed.

Expanding Horizons

· by roy · Read in about 2 min · (398 Words)
Categories: Self-Improvement | Tags: reading

Aside from my hobbyist readings (keeping up with gaming and comics news, etc), my usual reading diet used to consist of current events and tech news, primarily through apps like Flipboard and Feedly, secondarily through social media like Reddit and Twitter. Recently though I’ve started following more sources and blogs that are focused on more… “cultural” affairs. When I started doing #sketchdaily a couple of years ago, I started following more artists. During the past few months, as a sort of counterbalance to the prevalently negative current events and tech industry news, I’ve also begun following a few more people who are focused more on things like philosophy, history, poetry, literature, creativity, and so on. A lot of it goes over my head - I don’t really have any formal background in the humanities - but many times I come upon posts I appreciate and that help expand my horizons and point me down new avenues of thinking. And I can still enjoy good art and good poetry and good prose.

I have also purposely cut back a bit on the more political follows, especially on Twitter. Following current events feels a lot like being a spectator at a car crash; everything is terrible, but you can’t help but be fascinated by what’s going on. Even much of the tech industry news tends to be negative - Facebook has done something horrible; there’s a new data breach; people are spending too much time on their computers; big tech is helping fascist countries do censorship; and so on. It’s too easy to lose yourself in current events and be angry all the time about the state of the world or the country or our leadership. I’m not planning to disconnect completely from the news, like some people do, and I’m still always open to discussion about any topic (though I have decided to be more restrained in my urge to debate people and respond to every possible outrage).

I still believe that good citizens have a responsibility to stay abreast of what’s going on in the world and to be informed so that we can make good decisions. But that doesn’t mean it has to be outrage 24/7. We’re not going to run out of bad news any time soon. We have to find the space as well for appreciating what’s good in life and for broadening our horizons.

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