“How could you not know about Samantha’s dad? It was on Facebook!”
Insert look of WTH? How did you NOT know that Samantha’s father won the lotto, that Amy’s starting a new business or that Fernando (your high school friend’s little boy) just started walking?!?! HUH?!?!
Apparently, everybody out there is living it up -except you.
The FOMO plague…it’s here and I realized that, even my kids have caught the FOMO bug.
Listen, it’s hard not to. With a swipe of your mobile device it’s revealed to you that EVERYBODY else (except you) is doing something A.W.E.S.O.M.E.R. than you are (Yes that’s a word…ask Tomas). I mean, it never occurred to you that you could build a snowman in the desert, until you saw your BFF from elementary school crowd funding for the device she invented to make ice in the desert, right? Why didn’t you come up with that one?
And at that moment, FOMO swoops in, twerks right in front of your eyes and then waves and laughs at your inability to keep up.
It’s no coincidence that I came across an article written by Martha Beck in O Magazine back in 2013. Beck explains that we may argue FOMO to be healthy motivation. But the first of FOMO’s 4 letters is fear -the opposite of healthy. Fear can get us moving, but never happily. Living in fear doesn’t improve the quality of your life; it haunts us, makes us tense and actually shrivels our internal organs. So how can we live within the FOMOsphere? Glad you asked.
Martha gives 3 phenomenal strategies that I want to share with you:
1. Realize that FOMO is based on lies. The life that you think exists for others, doesn’t really exist. The internet and media bombards us with an endless montage of momentary highs disguised as everyday activities. Evaluating other people’s real life experiences by their carefully curated instapics or selfies is like trying to navigate with binoculars that only show mountain peaks. When you feel FOMO, right there and there, remind yourself that what you are seeing is likely not to be happening. The whole truth is that many of us will spend hours mustering up the energy to take a shower today. No one wants to take a picture of that. But THAT there is the truth.
2. Fight FOMO with FOMO. Our feelings and behaviors are created by the words we use. Redefine the meaning of FOMO:
- Feel Okay More Often
- Find One Magnificent Object
- Focus On Melting Open
3. Stop. When you feel FOMO creeping in, STOP. Close your eyes, breathe, center yourself. Realize the present moment and the blessings around you. See abundance, not lack.
What you’ve really been missing is today…that heartfelt talk with your high school girlfriend over coffee, reconnecting with your partner, tickle sandwiches with your kids (you should try them, they’re awesome!).
Listen to the whispers of your real inner voice that is telling you to chill, to be open and then you’ll realize how much is already available to you.
Have you caught the FOMO bug? What have you done to stop it in it’s tracks? Would love to hear from you. Leave a comment below.
I delve deeper into how to flip the funk and repel FOMO in my book. You can get it HERE.