I Recommend You Shut Off the News and Drive

Each month I come up with ideas for articles for the Rideshare Guy. I scroll through my Google newsfeed to see what has recently occurred that would interest rideshare and delivery drivers.

Man, most of the news is bad, and unfortunately, the bad news is what gets the clicks.

For example, you may have recently heard that Lyft could be up for sale. That is terrible news for rideshare drivers.

lyft ceo david risher reportedly says company is open to acquisition offers
Lyft CEO David Risher Announcement

What if Uber purchases Lyft, and then we are forced to work with Uber and only Uber? Do you feel your heart rate skipping a beat? That is what bad news does for you.

In the article, I will share with you why “doom scrolling” is not good for you and why it impacts how much money you make as a rideshare driver.


Most of the news I read on Google News regarding Uber and Lyft is negative.

Strikes, protests, Lyft’s stock price is down, everyone is angry, autonomous vehicles are coming to take our jobs, traffic congestion, 31 drivers killed, and passenger-on-driver violence.

Does reading this stuff help you as a driver? I say NO; it makes me feel bad. Why is that? And if you feel bad, how can you be in the right mindset for driving and landing those large tips?

Let’s start off with why constant bad news is BAD for you and me.

Why You Should Ignore the News & Drive

1. Psychological Well-being

Constant exposure to bad news can have detrimental effects on our psychological well-being.

The human brain is wired to pay more attention to negative information, which triggers anxiety, stress, and depression.

Looking at the story about Lyft being for sale, immediately put me in a state of desperation, in hopes that Lyft does not get sold.

When I read about a passenger stabbing a driver, I immediately fear for my life and remind myself that I carry pepper gel and a knife in my car.

These are not thoughts that I need or want to have. Consuming a barrage of negative news stories heightens our sense of threat, creating a constant state of worry and unease.

We can protect our mental health and maintain a positive mindset by avoiding news feeds with constant bad news.

2. Emotional Balance

Excessive exposure to negative news stories can overwhelm and emotionally drain us.

Tragic events and stories of human suffering can evoke empathy and compassion, but constant exposure can desensitize us, leading to emotional fatigue and hopelessness.

I rarely feel hopeless, but I do sometimes, especially when I read story after story about how terrible it is to be a rideshare driver in 2023.

Rates are lower, as Uber and Lyft keep manipulating us so they can pay as little as possible. It all starts to wear on me.

By consciously avoiding news feeds with constant bad news, we create space for positive emotions to flourish.

Consider curating your own sources of information. Positive information uplifts you and fills your mind with positive ideas and empowering concepts.

Podcasts are a great source of amazing content. As drivers, we have time between each passenger to listen to any content we want. We can redirect our emotional energy toward more uplifting experiences, fostering joy, gratitude, and contentment.

3. Strengthening Relationships

The constant barrage of negative news can strain our relationships.

Engaging in meaningful conversations and maintaining healthy connections with others becomes challenging when consumed by the negativity portrayed in news feeds.

I notice that when I am overwhelmed by bad news, I live in a state of fear. When I am afraid, I can not be much help to anyone else.

We can create an environment conducive to open communication and positive interactions by avoiding overwhelming negativity. Fear subsides, hope and positive expectations flourish.

When I feel this, I am a wonderful person to speak with. I can share my positive energy and feel it bounce off the person in front of me (or in back of me in the case of rideshare passengers).

Sharing uplifting stories, engaging in constructive discussions, and focusing on personal connections can nurture stronger relationships, enhancing our overall well-being.

4. Productivity and Focus

Excessive exposure to negative news can significantly distract us, impeding our productivity and focus.

Constantly refreshing news feeds and scrolling through tragic stories diverts our attention from important tasks and goals.

I am wired to be most happy when I am being productive. Just last Sunday, I started scrolling through my Instagram feed, watching video after video.

Before I knew it, an hour had passed by. Each short video seemed interesting. We all know that Instagram and Facebook use algorithms to spoon-feed us the perfect content to keep us interested for as long as possible, and it works.

While it feels good while you scroll through, it does not feel good when you realize you wasted a good hour on a Sunday doing nothing.

And that was not even scrolling bad news. By consciously avoiding news feeds filled with constant bad news, we can reclaim our time and redirect it toward more productive endeavors.

We enhance our productivity and fulfillment by engaging in activities contributing to personal growth, creativity, and self-improvement.

5. Cultivating Optimism

An inundation of negative news can foster a pessimistic outlook on life. It makes me see everything through a dark and cynical filter. Constant exposure to bad news may lead us to believe that the world is inherently dangerous and hostile.

I thought my car was dangerous after reading about drivers being stabbed, punched, and shot, but of course, it is not, my car is safe.

Passengers are good people. I have done over 29,000 rides and have never felt threatened. But after reading all the bad news, I forget my experiences and think the worse.

By consciously filtering our news intake and seeking positive and inspiring content, we can counterbalance the negativity and cultivate optimism. We have a choice.

6. An Alternate Reality

We drivers can create our own reality, we don’t have to be victims of all the bad news, we can curate our information intake.

Less news, more podcasts, and more books on Audible.

list of audio books and podcasts to listen to when you shut off the news and drive
List of Audio Books & Podcasts to Listen to When You Shut off the News & Drive

Who has time for news? When you realize how harmful a steady diet of bad news is for your spirit, you will explore alternate sources of information and entertainment.

A short and focused news read is valuable each day. I give myself ten minutes in the morning to get caught up. After that, I switch to more positive content.

Driver Takeaways

While staying informed about significant events is important, consuming news feeds with constant bad news can take a toll on our mental and emotional well-being.

By deliberately avoiding excessive exposure to negativity, we can protect our psychological health, maintain emotional balance, strengthen relationships, enhance productivity, and cultivate optimism.

These benefits leave us in the best position to charm our passengers and secure more frequent and larger tips. There are only a few ways we can enhance our revenue:

Embracing positivity in our lives allows us to navigate the world’s complexities with greater well-being and resilience.

Shut the news off and drive.  I did, and I can’t believe how much better I feel.