Living in a World with FOMO

FOMO, (the fear of missing out) isn't always the worst thing in the world. In the past, the very thought of missing out on something has driven me to make sure that I get those tickets, save up money for that trip, book the day off work etc. I love having fun, so sometimes I'm grateful for that nagging desire to be involved as much as possible, because it's led me to some incredible experiences and events that have brought me happiness.

However, FOMO crept up on me this week when I had to miss out on an event due to the fact that I needed to be at home resting after a long overnight flight. I was reminded of all the ways in which FOMO is bad: making you resentful that you have to do something as basic as self-care; forming envy as each social media post about the event makes you wish you'd been able to go. I had to have a reality check, reminding myself how lucky I was to have just come back from the most incredible trip with my girlfriend. I felt so silly and ungrateful, but as much as I'll always defend the existence of social media, when you're not feeling your happiest it really does hold the ability to torture you, as you're bombarded with the knowledge that you could have been part of all the fun people are posting about. It's easier to feel okay about missing out on something when what you're doing instead is equally enjoyable, but when you're working or studying or feeling ill, it can be hard not to feel down at times.

So how do we deal with this? FOMO is ridiculous because you can't possibly do everything in life - there's a big wide world out there and our awareness of other people's lives shouldn't impact us to the extent that it makes us spiral into sadness. One day is just one day, and not being part of something doesn't have to concern us, as much as Instagram makes us believe it does. We have to concentrate on our own lives and all that's good in them, focus on creating our own positive experiences and not worry about what's already been and gone. And sure, maybe people will still be telling stories from that dinner you missed in months to come, but who cares? We can be happy for them, enjoy hearing about it, know that we were doing what we needed to do at the time and that's okay. Nothing is as big or as important as it seems, and you're not missing out on as much as you feel you are. Take a break from scrolling, do something nice for yourself and feel free to post it on your Insta story, but just make sure that the picture isn't the reason behind the act.

When you're unhappy and aren't in the mood to think about your own life, indulge in fantasies that are comforting, like good books and movies that help you escape your gloom. Whatever you do, don't look at the lives of people who you're going to compare yourself to. Life isn't about comparison, and it isn't about who's the most successful, or who's having the most fun. Life is about existing in whatever way suits you, and I promise that your existence isn't worse off because you didn't get to go to that party.

Don't let FOMO make you live a life you don't want, or make you feel badly about the life that you have. You're doing great, and the best part is, you don't even have to prove it.



Until the next post,

Em x




3 comments

  1. Very in information. Enjoy your post.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I think a lot of people forget that most people only post the good things on social media, and not the bad. This creates a filter on how you think other people are living their lives. Great post!

    ReplyDelete