Sisters, I have a confession to make. I worry. Way. Too. Much. And, since becoming a mom, that worry has reached an all-time high! With such an influx of information about "how best to take care of baby", there are so many new what-ifs and am-I-doing-this-rights that I don't know how my head is still screwed on. My fellow moms tell me this is completely normal, BUT. I'm starting to see a trend where these worries are starting to rob me of the joys of motherhood. And I can tell you flat out where I think a large majority of these worries are sprouting from: Social Media.

How many of you head to bed after spending several minutes scrolling through facebook, twitter, or the news, and close up your smartphone with an overwhelming sense of dread, negativity, or worry? Girls, if this sounds like you, perhaps it's time to break up with bad news. There is just SO MUCH of it out there that if you let it, it can really start to drag you down! Now, I'm a very optimistic person, but some days I feel like I'm drowning in negativity with all the bad news covering crime, violence, war, identity theft, disease, political division, etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. get my point. Over time, I've noticed it's me more cynical, anxious, bitter, etc. Not to the point where  it has completely consumed me, but I've started to see tendencies in my personality that I'm not a fan of. My husband has started seeing them, too.

Over the last ten years, it's crazy to think about how dense and widespread the grip of social media has grown. It's even crazier to grasp how much it's influenced everything from what products you buy, to sparking and aiding social justice movements, to who a country elects into office! But I also think it has given people (I'm raising my hand over here!) a false sense of control (or lack thereof) over what's going on around them, simply because they're plugged in and "connected".

The pros? I've learned some fantastic health and mothering tips, as well as staying up-to-date on amazing Catholic resources. At times, the rapid infiltration of negative news on social media has sparked movements to fight for noble causes; however, I feel that a majority of big news corporations and their social media outlets thrive on something that I am strongly beginning to consider is a form of addiction; an addiction to fear.

How many of you are rapid bait-clickers and can actually feel your adrenaline pumping through your body as you impatiently wait for your browser to open up the article about everything from "ZIKA VIRUS INVADES THE AMERICAS" to "DID YOU KNOW SUCH-AND-SUCH CAUSES CANCER?" to "NORTH KOREA HAS NUCLEAR WEAPONS"? How many of you have stumbled upon the occasional positive news article and felt like you were taking a big gulp from an ice cold glass of water because it was so refreshing compared to the constant stream of negative news?

Ladies, as media consumers, we are indundated with negative news at every turn. We are making our lives so much more difficult when we don't put a filter or limit on the negative news we expose ourselves to on a daily basis. Now, I'm not saying we should just stick our heads in the sand and by doing so, all of the bad will just go away. I'm saying that when we drench our minds with negative news, it really bogs us down and affects us in many ways; not necessarily for the better. It's great to keep informed on important issues, but don't let them consume you to a point that you obsess and worry about them.

One day, my heroic husband took a stand and said, "You NEED to stop browsing/listening to/scrolling through the news so much. You are so worried all of the time and I don't like what it's doing to your optimistic personality." Now, I will admit, much of this had to do with being exposed to the news surrounding the violence associated with the South Side when we lived in Chicago, (which, sadly, is excessively bad in comparison to the rest of the country), but still. The media makes so much more money on stories that feed off of our worries and fears; especially when these stories make us seek out more information out of worry (a.k.a. "Click bait").

As Christians, we know there is real evil and bad in this world. But we also know we are obligated to do our best to advocate and work for peace, love, moral truths, and not stand silent on things that matter (check out the Catholic church's Examination of Conscience). We are also asked to trust in God and give Him control. It is so important to remember He is in control! He sits on the throne. He has the final word and claims victory over ALL evil and death.

As a mom, I think the bad news I struggle with the most is anything that relates to the harm or victimization of children. It rattles me to my core. It makes me physically ill. I feel paralyzed by fear that something like that could happen to my own child or a niece or nephew. Ugh. When you are inundated with bad news and negativity, the hopelessness begins to creep in. I truly believe this is Satan's way of seeping into our souls through our fears and insecurities. He is trying to drown out two of the most important essences of our Christian faith: Hope and joy! Satan is the thief of hope and joy.

Once, when I pridefully rejected my husband's suggestion that I quit watching/consuming the news so often, I defended my behavior by saying, "But if I don't keep up on what's going on, I won't know what to be cautious of or what to pray for." Looking back, my defense was completely flawed and wrong. God sees EVERYTHING. Every wrong. Every right. Every intention. Every good thing or bad thing that has ever happened, is happening, and will ever happen.  I need to remember that just because I'm "plugged in", it doesn't mean I have any more control over what goes on in this world. So, what can we do to feel more at peace with the terrible unrest going on in our country and in the world?

Remove the internet from your phone

Yes, yes, yes....this seems impossible. But you CAN do it! Deactivate your data settings on your smartphone or request that your cell phone provider limits your data usage. Our phones are with us all of the time; even when we're away from our computer. This will knock out a huge portion of your daily media consumption.

Ask your spouse or someone you trust to hold you accountable for how much news you consume. Don't watch the news on the TV when you're at home-especially in the morning! Instead, do something positive like journal, read scripture, read a Catholic-themed book to grow in your faith, join a Bible study group, or pick up a long-lost hobby that you used to love doing! Not consuming negative news in the morning will help you start the day with a more positive outlook! And, you'll be shocked at how much extra time you have!


In recent years, I've fallen in love with the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. This prayer is a wonderful reminder to trust in Christ and to remember His endless mercy is available to anyone who asks for it.


Journaling helps me to layout and discern what I realistically have control over and the things I don't. Again, no matter how suffocating or overwhelming my worries are, I must always remember that ultimately, God is in control of EVERTHING. Ah......feel that weight falling off your shoulders? That's called laying down your burdens at the foot of the cross. When we deny God our trust, we are stripping The Cross of its power.

Choose to trust in God

This sounds easier than it is. In every moment of worry, along every step of the way, choose to trust. Jesus, I trust in you. Jesus, I trust in you. Jesus, I trust in YOU!

Choose joy

This is the big one. Worrying robs us of our joy. We can choose joy-a gift of the Holy Spirit-in every. single. circumstance. A great way to choose joy is by focusing on something you are grateful for in moments of worry. When things get really hard for me, I'll think of my baby's beautiful face when she giggles. Or the way my husband looked at me on our wedding day as I walked down the aisle. Or a time in my life when my parents told me they were proud of me. Gratitude is a great catalyst for joy!

One of the beautiful and paradoxical things about our faith is that, while we call ourselves Catholics and Christians and say we are believers, we are allowed to struggle with our faith and pray for help in our unbelief. In our weary world, the hopelessness of today is stifling. But joy is contagious! Let us pray for God to work through us in our vocations to bring more joy and gratitude into a world that needs our light more than ever before! (Matthew 5:14-16)

I will leave you with a quote to think about:

"You can tell the size of your God by looking at the size of your worry list. The longer your list, the smaller your God." -Author Unknown

Ladies, the power and love of our God is HUGE. In fact, the word "huge" doesn't even cover it. Unfathomable. Infinity and beyond. Wait, that saying is probably patented or something. Anyways, you get my point. Never underestimate His love for you, the joy He wants for you, and the plans He has for you and our world. (Jeremiah 29:11)

Note: If, despite doing a media fast, your symptoms of dread and anxiety get worse, this may be an indicator of a more serious issue. Moms, this could also be a sign of Postpartum Depression. If you think this may be you, please don't hesitate to reach out for help.