The Love of Bad News

February 4th, 2009 by Kevin Ngo

The love of bad news? Who in the world would love bad news? Apparently, lots of people, they just wouldn’t use the word love. They are the people who look for the negative and enjoy spreading it around. The seeking of what’s bad can cause a good life look like a life of hardship and constant struggle. Let me explain what I’m talking about and discuss what you can do if you’ve fallen into this seeking of bad news trap.

What’s The Love of Bad News?
I remember taking a speech class in high school where the teacher would ask the class to talk about a current event at the beginning of each session. We had to also tell her why we chose that event or story to tell.

I remember one particular day when she forced me to volunteer since I almost never spoke up in class being the shy student that I was. I told a story in the news about a dog who ended up saving a kid from drowning and that my reason for telling that story was because everyone else’s current event or story was negative.

What she said afterward stuck with me ever since. She said stories with good ending are cute but no one cares about those types of stories when it comes to news. Bad news is what sells. She then went on to actually say she enjoys bad news and sometimes secretly jumps for joy when something big and terrible happens. She had the love of bad news.

The Power of Bad News

Now, you can read this and think how horrible of a person she is. How could she have the heart to actually hope for bad things to happen? Well, facts are facts. Bad news does sell way more than good news.

bad economy
If you were walking down the street and happened to glance at the news stand and saw the headline say “The Circus is Coming Into Town”, you’ll probably just go on your way unless if you wanted to know more. But what if instead the headline was “The Greatest Tragedy to Hit in Decades”, wouldn’t you at least be curious?

You know what they say, “bad news travels fast”. It’s as if people crave for bad news to have something exciting to talk about. Perhaps that’s the reason why my speech teacher had this love for bad news.

Okay, so bad news sells, travels fast, and catches people’s attention. So what’s the point? The point is this. It’s easier to notice and think about the bad things going on in your life compared to the good things going on in your life since the negative things in the world seem to be more plentiful than the good things.

Bad News Influence

If you look at what’s going on in the world today, would you be able to name 10 things to be depressed or worried about? Of course you can. But then again, in the mid 90’s when things were going well, you still could’ve come up with 10 things. You see, it doesn’t matter what happens around the world or in your personal life, what matters is what you choose to focus on. Keep looking for crap in your life, and you’ll be sure to find it.

Being able to control what you focus on can mean the difference between living a happy life and living one of despair. The problem is with so much negativity in the media, we almost get conditioned to look for what’s bad or shocking or news worthy in our own lives to focus on.

That’s why many successful people advise to stop watching TV or at least stop watching the news. The main reason is that as more and more negativity enters your mind, eventually more and more negativity will start coming out of you. On top of that, the more negativity you feed yourself, the more you’ll tend to crave it and look for it.

Focus = Reality

Now let’s put this love of bad news into a more personal context. What do you tend to focus on more in your life? Do you look for what’s bad or what’s good? Do you focus more on things that you can complain to people about or things that you’re proud of and make you feel good? Is the concentration on things that empowers you or disempowers you?

flat tire
You could have a wonderful spouse, adorable kids, the perfect job, and a dozen of other things to be absolutely ecstatic about then get a flat tire and think about how bad you’ve got it couldn’t you? Let’s look at it the opposite way. Can someone who has the worse of luck in life to most people’s standards be happy? Yes.

It doesn’t matter how bad of a life you’ve had. You could always find something to be happy about if you choose to. Look, anyone could feel miserable about their life if they wanted to, even those who seem to have everything.

Just look at the famous people who had all the wealth and fame most people could only dream about but ended up taking their own lives. On the other hand, you can visit third world countries and find people who are just fun loving and happy even though they have practically nothing.

Now if you’re depressed about your life, I’m not saying you don’t have the right to be. You have the right to feel however you choose to feel. If you want to feel like life has dealt you a bad hand and that nothing is good in your life, feel free. I don’t know why anyone would choose to feel that way, but if it makes for a more interesting conversation with your friends and strangers or to have a pity party, be my guest. Just realize you chose to feel that way by choosing what to focus on.

The Unwinnable Debate

With all the negativity in the media, focusing on what’s good in your life could be a challenge at times. After all, how many people get into debates about how bad they have it compared to their peers?

“So you lost your job? That’s nothing. At least you still have your house. I lost both!”

“I only wish I were in your guys’ shoes. I’m going through a divorce. Losing a house and job is nothing.”

It’s a weird contest people get into. It’s like for a moment, they actually feel better about their life because they have it worse than someone else. It’s a contest no one wins.

What’s Good In Your Life?

While the love of bad news is all around us with the majority predicting doom and gloom for the world’s economy at the time, there are plenty of people who are feeling happy and grateful. There are people getting new jobs, buying their first home, getting married, starting a family, or starting a business.

There will always be something to feel bad about. You don’t need the news to add to your list of negative things. This love of bad news, whether it’s from the television or newspaper or gossip from your co-workers or friends, will have a negative effect on how you feel. You may not exactly have a love of bad news, but if you’re seeking it out and focusing on it whether consciously or unconsciously, then the results are the same.

Learn to focus on what’s good in your life. There’s always something you could be grateful about now matter how badly you have it. If you are reading this, you can be happy and grateful that you could see and read. You could be happy that you have access to the internet. You could be happy that you have fingers to type with.

If you seek, you shall find. Look for what’s good and you’ll find it. Look for what’s bad, and you’ll find it. Here’s something to think about. What we look for and find, we will tend to find even more of it. The more you focus on what’s good in your life, the more good things will come into your life for you to feel good about.

Unfortunately, the opposite is also true. The more you focus on what’s bad in your life, the more bad things will come into your life for you to feel bad about. The more “bad news” you focus on in your life, the more “bad news” will tend to occur for you.

So what do you do to snap out of this love of bad news hypnotism? Change your focus. How do you do that? I’ll be discussing that in the next post.

Until next time…

Love Life. Do Good. Live Well.

Related Posts to Love of Bad News:

The Power of Focus

How to Fail

Return to Self Improvement page.


  1. coco April 25, 2009
    • Kevin Ngo April 25, 2009
  2. Windwalker June 5, 2009
  3. zoe70 June 5, 2009
  4. rutzie.... July 13, 2011
    • Kevin Ngo July 13, 2011

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.