Tuesday, 19 January 2016

FOMO


Ouch! I don't usually buy into these abbreviated problems that people seem to have and seem to love describing to the world. But the other day I found myself sitting at home freaking out, because I was suffering from a classic case of FOMO... not something I want to repeat in the near, or very distant, future.

FOMO - Fear Of Missing Out

With all the media attention surrounding every single little thing that any one does it's easy to see how you can get caught up in following other peoples lives instead of your own. It's also easy to see how you could end up spending a vast amount of time comparing your normal life to the apparently fantastically exciting lives that your friends or neighbours or whoever portray on their various social media time lines. Spoiler! Everyone posts their best and most interesting pictures in whatever way that makes them seem most exciting, this does not mean that their entire lives are the stuff of magic and fairytales!

So, I'm not a massive social media buff... in fact starting a blog has been a bit of a social media education for me... I didn't even have a twitter account before I set up my blog... I know right!


Q. So where on earth did my horrible episode of the dreaded FOMO come from?

A. My boyfriend and all our friends went out without me.

They were having a lads night (cos they're all lads, and yes they were all his friends long before they were mine) and I'd known they were going to have a lads night all week, it didn't bother me, in fact I thought it was a good thing. Plus it gave me a chance to go home and have a much needed (and really good) conversation with my folks.
So I'm halfway through a lovely evening with my family, we've just had dinner, we're drinking wine, everyone is happy. Suddenly the FOMO strikes and I'm sat at the kitchen table with a head full of pictures of them having absolutely the best time anyone could ever have ever... without me. In a matter of seconds my brain has already figured out that the whole reason tonight will be so super awesome for them is because I won't be there and that of course they will somehow get into the best party all year and be absolutely perfectly drunk and meet all the most amazing people they've ever met... without me. The urge to cry, followed by the urge to ring them, followed by the urge to just turn up and crash their night, followed by the crippling thought that they would all hate me so much if I did that, followed by a sudden flash of anger for all of them for having so much fun without me, followed by the urge to scream and shout and run upstairs and hide under a duvet... followed mercifully by the realisation that I was being absolutely ridiculous and was quite clearly giving in to a classic case of the dreaded FOMO.
Ouch!
Luckily after about ten minutes of thinking it through I was able to calm my frenzied brain and think rationally again and the FOMO soon passed. But what a horrible experience. What a terrible minefield of self doubt and what a disgusting mix of emotions. I will be very happy if I never experience that again.
Needless to say I went on to continue having a lovely evening with my family and the only time I felt remotely upset was when I was trying to go to sleep and that was purely because I am so used to sleeping next to my partner that sleeping alone felt simply bizarre.

(Btw they didn't have the most perfect night out ever they just had a fairly ordinary if very drunk night at the pub.)

So, some advice to you all. Next time your suffering an attack of the dreaded FOMO remember;

- Relax!
- No really, Relax! Take a deep breath and enjoy whatever it is that you're doing.
- You don't have to feel that way, choose to change your thinking.
- You are not missing out because everyone hates you.
- You're friends are not going to have an even better time than usual just because you are not there.
- Everyone else's life is not as perfect as it may seem on their social media timelines.
- They're probably just hanging out, you're not missing the biggest event of the year.
- You could be doing something equally as exciting as what it is you think they're doing.
- You probably are doing something equally as exciting as what it is you think they're doing.
- Giving in to FOMO is a waste of your time and energy, stop it.
- Stop comparing your life to someone else's, how do you ever expect to be happy if you're constantly comparing yourself to someone else?!

and if that fails;

Fight FOMO like a pro - go out and do something BADASS!

And if you're still not sure, here's a picture of some happy penguins to put a smile on that face of yours!

                                             


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