What is FOMO and How Can it Affect You?
What is FOMO?
FOMO stands for “fear of missing out”. This fear refers to the feeling that others are having more fun, living better lives, and experiencing much better things than you are. It makes you feel as if you are missing out on several life events and experiences that others are experiencing at that time. FOMO can cause a feeling of nervousness, anxiety, and even depression.
What causes FOMO?
Although some people are more affected by FOMO than others, the fear of missing out has always affected many people. Social media has been playing a huge part in this fear, making it much more common. With social media, anyone can check up on their friends or family to see what they’re up to. Many people enjoy posting status updates and uploading pictures of their daily activities. Those who view the posts of others can compare their own lives with what they see on the internet without even noticing it, resulting in them losing their sense of identity and developing lower self-esteem.
Some psychologists have found that the fear of missing out is one of the reasons why social media platforms are such a success. They claim that FOMO causes people to use social media to show off what they are doing and how much fun they are having during that moment.
FOMO can greatly affect anyone of any age but it is most common among teenagers and young adults. This is because those age groups are more likely to be on social media. The fear of missing out can cause teenagers and young adults to miss out on their lives even more. They are so focused on what others are doing that they forget to live lives of their own.
How Do You Cope With FOMO?
FOMO can negatively affect anyone’s mindset. To begin thinking positively again and cope with the fear of missing out, something has to be done. Here are a few ideas on how you can cope with FOMO:
Take a break from social media! Social media can be fun to use from time to time but too much of it is not good. Just muting your notifications isn’t enough. It can be very tempting to open the app again to check for any notifications you didn’t receive. It’s best if you uninstall the app from your phone for a while, turn off your phone, and find something else to do. You could go read a book, bake some cookies, go for a walk with your dog, or take a nap.
Keep a journal! Instead of posting all the fun things you do, you could write and describe them in your journal to look back on. You could also create a gratitude journal to write down everything you are thankful for. It could include several pictures if you’d like. Your journal could be online or on paper.
Find real-life connections! When feeling down, we can often turn to social media to seek out connections with others and increase our sense of belonging. Sometimes social media can end up making us feel worse than we already do. Instead of turning to social media, it is better to meet up with friends in person. You could plan a fun day of adventure and get your mind off any stress while connecting with your friends.
Practice mindfulness! Mindfulness is an exercise in which the person learns to focus only on what they are doing at that moment. It helps take your mind off of any stress that you could be feeling. To practice mindfulness, you could meditate, take a bath, or take a walk in nature.
FOMO is not fun to experience. It is best to avoid it before it affects you. If you ever get caught in the fear of missing out, remember that everything is not what it seems.