Conscious Cat Sunday: Take a News Break

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We live in a world where we’re bombarded with news 24/7, and most of it is bad news. It’s everywhere: at airports, in line at the supermarket, even in some doctor’s offices (and don’t even get me started on how insane that is!) It’s becoming increasingly difficult to balance the desire for information with taking care of our mental health. It’s enough to make you wish you where a cat!

Exposing your psyche to this constant battering of negativity causes anxiety, stress and fear, which triggers the body’s natural stress response. Our bodies were not designed to live in a constant state of “fight or flight,” and allowing this much negativity into your life at all times will take its toll on your mental and physical, not to mention spiritual health.

Now more than ever, it’s up to each of us to make conscious choices about how and when we consume our news. I suggest the following:

Decide how you want to receive the news

Do you want to get your news in print, audio or visual format? I get my news from trusted newspapers only. I try to limit visuals to the images that come across my Facebook newsfeed. I find visuals too powerful: once I’ve seen something I can’t unsee it.

Choose how frequently you want to receive the news

Do you really need to have the TV on all day long so you don’t miss anything? There is very little that happens in the world that you need to know about “live.” Limit your news intake to once or twice a day. I get a daily summary email from a trusted newspaper, and decide based on that which stories I would like more information about.

Know how to identify fake news

Fake news is not a new problem, but it’s becoming increasingly difficult to separate fact from fiction. The Annenberg Public Policy Center offers a comprehensive checklist on how to spot fake news.

Know how much news you can tolerate

If you’re a highly sensitive individual, you’re going to want to limit your news intake even more than the average person. Highly sensitive people tend to feel more deeply and are more reactive, and are more prone to anxiety and depression. They are particularly vulnerable to watching hostility or violence. I recently walked into a friend’s house while she had the TV on a news channel. It took me most of the evening, and into the next day, to shake off some of the images I took in even in just the few minutes before she turned the TV off.

Take a news break

Take a 24-hour news break. Trust me, you won’t miss anything – if something really big happens, you’ll find out from your friends or family. Of course, for most of us, this also means taking a social media break. If you’re lucky, your social media feed is simply a collection of cat photos, but if you’re like most of us, that’s not the case.

I struggle with this issue. I want to be informed, but I can’t take the constant barrage of bad news, so in addition to being mindful about my news sources and when I consume news, I turn everything off after dinner. I may watch TV, but only pre-recorded shows or Netflix.

Pet your cats

Of course, the best relief from news overload is spending time with your cats. And don’t you envy them? They couldn’t care less about what’s happening in the world as long as they have a full bowl and warm lap to nap on.

As always, I love to hear from you and welcome your comments. However, please note I will delete all comments that contain any sort of political commentary. The Conscious Cat is a politics-free zone.

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Welcome to the Conscious Cat

The Conscious Cat is an award winning website published by writer and cat expert Ingrid King, author of Buckley's Story and Purrs of Wisdom. Here at The Conscious Cat, we're passionate about cats. Our mission is to educate cat guardians so that every cat, and every cat's human, can have a happy, healthy life together.

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On this site, you will find expert advice from a seasoned cat consultant. The Conscious Cat features articles on cat health, cat nutrition, cat behavior, cat lifestyle, pet loss, and, of course, pictures of cats. We'll bring you product and book reviews, as well as news from around the cat world.

We'll also share Purrs of Wisdom: lessons in conscious living, inspired by the cats who share our lives. Other features include our Mews and Nips; fascinating feline stories from around the globe, and Allegra's World and Ruby's Reflections; written from the perspective of Ingrid's two feline companions. After all, who better than a cat to teach us a thing or two about how to live a joyful life!

And let's not forget, we have a soft spot for tortoiseshell cats and their unique personalities, also known as "tortitude."

We hope you'll enjoy our site. Please join our community of cat lovers: sign up for our newsletter and join us on Facebook. Your comments and feedback are always welcome.

Mews and Nips: Cats for Hire

working-cats

Best Friends LA’s working cat program gives cats who are not bonded to humans a chance at being placed with adopters who are looking for natural rodent deterrents for enclosed properties such as barns, warehouses, churches, factories or other facilities. This program is a win-win on a lot of different levels: shelters benefit because it makes more room for socialized, friendly cats who need homes, adopters benefit because they can save their property from rodent damage without spending a lot of money, but most of all, the cats benefit, because the program allows them to safely live in an environment where they can thrive. For more about this wonderful program, visit the Best Friends Blog.

If you missed any of the stories featured on the Conscious Cat this week, here’s a recap: Continue reading…

Ruby Goes to the Dentist – Part Three: Our Day at Animal Dentistry and Oral Surgery

Sleepypod-review

This is the third installment of our four-part series “Ruby Goes to the Dentist,” in which I share my recent experience with Ruby. I’m hoping that it will not only put your mind at ease if you’re faced with a cat who has to have a dental procedure, but that it will also help you ensure that your cat gets the optimal level of care before, during and after her dental work.

If you’ve missed the first part in this series, please read Ruby Goes to the Dentist – Part One: Diagnosis, and Choosing a Veterinary Dentist

If you’ve missed the second part in this series, please read Ruby Goes to the Dentist – Part Two: Preparation Continue reading…

Giveaway: Berkley Bestiary Collection Prize Pack from Galison

cat-notebook-notecards

This giveaway is sponsored by Galison*

Galison was founded in 1979 to work with museums to make artist imagery widely available in the form of well-designed paper products. Galison first published calendars and a few books before focusing primarily on fine art stationery, boxed notecards, greeting cards, personalized Christmas cards (for individuals and businesses), journals, and other gift products for writers. Galison features a line of cat-inspired products, which includes notebooks, greeting cards, and even a 1,000 piece Cool Cats Puzzle. Continue reading…

Ruby Goes to the Dentist – Part Two: Preparation

tortoiseshell-cat-face

This is the second installment of our four-part series “Ruby Goes to the Dentist,” in which I share my recent experience with Ruby in hopes that it will not only put your mind at ease if you’re faced with a cat who has to have a dental procedure, but that it will also help you ensure that your cat gets the optimal level of care before, during and after her dental work.

If you’ve missed the first part in this series, please read Ruby Goes to the Dentist – Part One: Diagnosis, and Choosing a Veterinary Dentist Continue reading…

Review: Nature’s Cat Litter Mat

litter-mat-review

This post is sponsored by Nature’s Cat Litter Mats

Litter mats can be a great way to reduce one of the messiest aspects of sharing life with a cat. They can help reduce tracking, and keep any accidental spills contained. The Nature’s Cat Litter Mat does both beautifully.

Generously sized, these thick, heavy duty mats come in rectangular and half moon shapes, and in two colors. They are made from commercial grade vinyl that will not slide on your floor and will not crack or rip with normal use. The mats are waterproof and BPA free. Continue reading…

Ruby Goes to the Dentist – Part One: Diagnosis and Choosing a Veterinary Dentist

tortoiseshell-cat-face

Finding out that your cat needs dental work provokes anxiety in most cat guardians, and I’m not immune to those fears. Despite my years of working in veterinary clinics, and having been through many dental procedures with the cats that came before Allegra and Ruby, there’s not much that makes me feel as anxious as the thought of one of my babies having to undergo anesthesia. A year and a  half ago, I shared my experience about Allegra’s dental procedure in a four part series. Last month, it was Ruby’s turn. Continue reading…

Sunday Purrs of Wisdom: Say No to Drama

tortoisehshell-cat-drama

I like a good drama as much as the next person. Intrigue, passion, mystery – what’s not to like? But when I say I like drama, I’m talking about fiction, not real life. When it comes to real life drama, I don’t want any part of it.

There’s an awful lot of drama everywhere you look these days. It’s probably disproportionately represented in online communities – for some, interacting with others online seems to remove a “courtesy filter” that sometimes stops drama from happening in “real life.” Continue reading…

Mews and Nips: Boston Police Cat Gets Fancy New Condo

boston-police-cat

The cutest member of the Boston police department moved into fancy new digs earlier this week. Officers of the department’s Special Weapons and Tactics unit built a deluxe condo for SWAT to protect her from the cold. SWAT was rescued in 2013. She was spayed, vaccinated and microchipped, but no matter what they tried, she couldn’t be convinced to be an indoor cat. The new condo features a “studio interior layout,” as well as a deck and glass doors with “panoramic city views.” Visit the Huffington Post for the full story and more photos.

If you missed any of the stories featured on the Conscious Cat this week, here’s a recap: Continue reading…

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