Doomscrolling Is Slowly Eroding Your Mental Health
So many of us do it: You get into bed, turn off the lights, and look at your phone to check Twitter one more time. You see that coronavirus infections are up. Maybe your kids can't go back to school. The economy is cratering. Still, you incessantly scroll though bottomless doom-and-gloom news for hours as you sink into a pool of despair.
This habit has become known as doomscrolling--the act of consuming an endless procession of negative online news. As protests over racial injustice and police brutality join the COVID-19 crisis in the news cycle, it’s only gotten more intense. The constant stream of news and social media never ends. According to a recent survey from the Pew Research Center, 66% of Americans feel worn out by the amount of news available.
Recently, Dictionary.com named doomscrolling one of its “New Words We Created Because of Coronavirus.” There’s something else in the etymology, though. Particularly in the word doom. The act of doomscrolling, then, is to roll toward annihilation. Taken biblically, it has a Revelation tone. Simultaneously, each person watches the demise of so much, while also slowly destroying themselves.
Doomscrolling will never actually stop the doom itself. Amidst all of the pain, isolation, and destruction of the past six months, it’s not worth it to add on to the strain with two hours of excess Twitter every night. Try these things instead: Put down your phone, turn off your news notifications, and focus on good news to lift your spirits.
Possible Preaching Angle:
The gospel literally means “Good News” and it is what people desperately need right now. Become a testimony of hope (1 Pet. 3:15), light (Matt. 5:14), and the good news of a Savior (Luke 2:10) whom we proclaim (Acts 8:35).