NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Q: Noah, I feel inundated with news all day long. How can I tune out the drone and listen to only what's essential?A: The news has become noise, massive chatter that's transmitted at lightning speed and nauseatingly repetitive. Every story is sold to the public as the most important event of our lifetime. The implication: you must know everything! Here are the tips: 1. The real news Cable news hosts become neighbors: the grumpy old man, the hipster, the preacher, the straight shooter. We start to think of them as friends. And then we are hooked, addicted to their specific chatter. Generally, we like to stay within our comfort zones. We listen to the same channels, read the same papers, and buy into the words of like-minded "personal" blogger friends. The problem is some rely on the news media as a life source. They become absorbed with information about the world and stop paying attention to what is going on in their real world. If your kid is getting a C in math but it is not highlighted in ridiculous graphics, with big fancy letters, a theme song, and some crashing sound bites -- are you really present? If your day is overwhelmed by op-ed pieces I guarantee you are missing out on personal, local realities. This is the good stuff! 2. Be a little picky The listener has a responsibility. We are the one choosing to sit, absorb and consume all of the information being thrown our way. Be selective about what you want to know, need to know and how much time you actually want to spend receiving this knowledge. Do you need to read every editorial from the Wall Street Journal to the Village Voice? Try and avoid constant overlap -- if it is humanely possible. 3. Like it What do you enjoy learning about? I rarely read the style section of the New York Times. I am sure it is wonderfully written. However, the truth is I could care less about fashion.