Think Like a Reporter

Whenever a reporter does a story, usually they get the 5 w’s, sometimes one H. These are usually the most important elements of a story and written in the first and second sentence. A really brief statement that tells the reader what happened.

Then after we finish the whole story, we do editing and fact checking. It is very important to get all the facts right, including spelling, or else we could be held accountable.

I was in Toronto the other day with my best friend when we heard a loud noise. We were scared and I was quick to hold onto her. Due to our anxiety, we thought the worst scenario possible. When I was latched onto her, terrified to let go, everyone around us just kept walking and doing what they were doing.

Of course, the noise was just a car running over a pop can.

I told this story to my counsellor. She told me whenever something like that happens again, to think like a reporter.

A reporter can not go by what he/she thinks or feels. A reporter can’t make stuff up in a story. A reporter has to get the facts and check for accuracy.

What actually happened? And what’s the proof/source?

Go through all the facts in your head. Write it down if you want. Don’t make anything up. Check for accuracy of facts.

Nothing bad is happening unless you know for a FACT that it is.

I know what it’s like to have anxiety. I have it. It sometimes jumps into the craziest conclusions and makes us think worse case scenario. I know this “reporting exercise” is probably not going work on everyone. But I thought it was a cool technique to try out, and a good thing to try and remember.

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