I used to really suffer from fear of missing out (FOMO). I would think – “what is everyone else doing this weekend/lovely spring evening/summertime? I bet it’s much better and more exciting than what I’m doing.” In fact, during the warmer months I still have a little (of what I jokingly refer to as) “summertime sadness”. I feel like the warm weather brings a lot of pressure to constantly be doing something awesome.
When we concern ourselves with whatever other people are doing – where they are living, working, socializing – we miss out on the moment. Each moment we miss is time we are losing from our own precious life. The fact FOMO became such a popular expression highlights how much it can pervade our thinking. It’s possible to eradicate (or at least limit!) this wasteful use of energy.
Here are 5 tips to kick FOMO to the curb:
1. Do what you love!
FOMO is only possible when you are not where you want to be. If you are living a life you love and doing what matters to you, then you won’t think about other people and concern yourself with the value of their choices. Use some down time and meditate (if you can) to really surface and prioritise what is important to you.
2. Don’t believe the hype
Wise old Buddha said, “Comparison is the thief of joy.” The grass is always greener if we think of it that way. Instagram and Facebook don’t make this easier as we compare our “behind the scenes” lifestyle with other peoples glamorous travel experiences, witty stories and party highlights. Put social media into perspective. No one is going to post their pajama pictures watching Game of Thrones eating Dominoes.
3. Listen to yourself
Think – if something is meant to be, it will be. Don’t torture yourself with thinking there might be an attractive single or a potential networking contact at an event if your heart is not in going to that event. Trust your intuition.
4. Be present!
For a moment just be still and breathe. Notice your surroundings — the sounds in the room, how your body feels, the light outside. Sometimes we do not pause and acknowledge the calmness of the present moment. When we are living in the now, we do not worry about the future or feel guilt or regret about the past. Regularly applied, mindfulness makes us much more peaceful and alive.
5. Use it to drive positive change
Recurring FOMO is perhaps a sign something needs to change in your life. Use this trigger to your advantage. What does it tell you – move to a new city, call someone to tell them how you feel, book a vacation? Maybe something is waiting to happen in your life and its time for you to go for it.
You block the flow of opportunity, creation and miracles when you focus on other people and what they are doing. Use your energy on your life. Claim your joy by focusing on what matters: you!
With a whole lotta love –