I am hear to talk about the all consuming, dreaded — FOMO. Or as we all know it, the Fear Of Missing Out.
Raise your hand if you have ever felt this. This feeling that other people’s lives are going somewhere, and yours is not. The feeling when you choose to stay in for the night for your own physical or mental health, but then you see your friends are out without you. The feeling when you are alone that you are left out or failing somehow.
FOMO takes on many forms, but in the end, gives you the feeling that your life is not enough. That you need to be doing more.
This is such a trick and one that can really put you at a standstill in life.
It is so easy to fall into. And social media is a big cause of this.
Seeing our friends lives and the best moments will cause you to feel like you are missing out. We have this information instantly, which allows us to instantly compare and contrast the difference in your life.
But the flaw in this, is we only see the good on media, or at least the bad, is censored in some way. We don’t see the struggle to get there, we don’t see peoples financial burdens, home life issues or unemployment. We don’t see the 20 pictures taken for the perfect selfie or the time spent behind the “perfect” caption.
We see them traveling, experiencing things we haven’t, living in cool places, accomplishing important things.
But we have to stop this illusion. How do we do that?
- To start off, we have to be content with our life. I always have to take time to remind myself what I want in life. Making lists help me. What are my goals within the next 5 years? When do I want to get married? How will my finances look over the next few years? When can I travel? Write it down. Make them real attainable goals. And most importantly, make them YOUR goals. Do not let other people’s lives confuse you as to what your goals are in life.
- Asking God His plan for me. I like to do this, while reflecting on this verse: Jeremiah 29:11. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” This verse reminds me that I am meant for great things that are independent from the lives that other’s live. Because I am uniquely me, my life will look different from everyone else’s. And that is a good thing!
- And the most difficult challenge but necessary, let’s try to be authentic with each other. Show not only the good online, but share your struggles. Be more honest with others, so we can relate to each other more! The struggles are just as much a part of the journey as the end accomplishment.
I have been struggling with FOMO for a number of reasons recently.
First off, with my relationship. As all the wonderful people in my life are getting married (I have seven weddings this year lol), I begin to lose focus on what I want in life and get blinded with white dresses and engagements. I know I do not want to get married within the next two years, so why am I sitting here dreaming about married life and feeling bad when that isn’t even my goal right now?
Or seeing others travel, I get this itch as if my life isn’t good enough. When if I looked around I should be very happy. I’m living downtown Chicago, I work in the city, I am about to start graduate school for my dream career. So what is there left to be unsatisfied with?
In these moments of FOMO, take the time to evaluate each reaction and find the root cause.
There are only two reasons for FOMO, either ….
a) I am having FOMO because this is really something I want. ….OR….
b) I am having FOMO because their life looks glamorous, fun and exciting.
If you actually want that right now, then make specific goals to accomplish that dream. BUTT if you are like me and you are just looking at the glamour and not what you actually want. Then, take a step back. Re-Familiarize yourself with your goals. Or re-evaluate them if they have changed.
This is how I combat my anxiety and pressure regarding my future.
It’s what we do (or at least I have done) throughout our whole lives. I remember being a kid and thinking “I can’t wait to be 16 because …” or when I turned 16 thinking, “I can’t wait to be 21 because….” You always want what you don’t have. And when you do have it, you move on to the next thing.
So here is your reminder to live in the present. Enjoy what you have right in front of you.
If you are having a night in for your own mental or physical health, make that moment the best it can be. Read your favorite book or watch your favorite movie. Take a bubble bath or do a face mask. Just be 100% in that moment.
If you are living at home to save money, don’t think of this as wasted life opportunity. Take it as a time to spend with your family, because you might not get that opportunity again in the future.
If you want to travel, begin mapping out and saving what you can to make that trip happen. Even if it is 5 years out, this will ease the pressure you put on yourself to make it happen right now.
With social media, giving us instantaneous information, it has caused us all to feel unsatisfied when things are NOT instantaneous. Which there is literally a quote that says “The best things in life are worth waiting for.” Therefore, we will not get that instant gratification that we are spoiled with.
Relationships take time. Careers take time. Traveling takes time to plan out. Life takes time.
Everything you want to achieve will take time. So give yourself a break and know that the best is coming. It will just take some time. ❤
Just something that was on my heart and mind, I needed a little reminder for myself.
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