With the boom of the internet and social media over the last decade, we as a society have reaped increased connection and incredible interaction with each other. 🙌
While I’m grateful for all the amazing opportunities granted through social media and the internet, I’m not naive to its pitfalls!
And one aspect that’s been nurtured by the boom, that can be a severe threat to our self-care if unchecked, is FOMO.
Self-Care Excuse #3: FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out)
On some level, we’ve all experienced it! It’s this weird mixture of excitement and pressure to always be part of something, somewhere, somehow.
And when we get down to brass tacks, FOMO can be a form of social anxiety. We’re anxious that if we don’t partake in whatever activity, we miss out on key experiences, and missing out on key experiences then makes us irrelevant and excluded.
The crippling fear of missing out, or not being included, stems from a subtle but nefarious lie that we buy into:
Believing our lives aren’t already adequate or “good enough”.
The reason we believe this is because we compare our perfectly unique lives to the perfectly curated and filtered lives of peers, influencers and celebrities on social media. Essentially, we only witness a highlight reel of all the great, fun things going on with other people, and then assess our own lives as generic and mediocre … not realizing that everybody’s got peaks and valleys.
Just because the valleys aren’t captured doesn’t mean they’re not there.
I’ve made a commitment in my own life, because of all I have seen and learned… to be real, even when it is hard. To embrace and showcase the entire landscape- peaks, valleys and all, because it challenges the lie of superficial perfection and empowers others to be authentic themselves. That’s why you get me with no makeup, hair crazy, just living life… I LOVE REALNESS!
One of my favorite things about this article is how it accurately states that FOMO is fueled by lack; lack of appreciating the uniqueness of your own circumstances, lack of gratitude, lack of real connection and sense of belonging.
Isn’t it crazy how many social media connections we can have yet miss out on fundamental human connection? Make sure to prioritize community if you ever feel lonely and mired in a FOMO rut; the right kind of connection with people is crucial to your health and self-care.
All that being said, not all FOMO is bad!
FOMO isn’t always negative either. Sometimes it can be an impetus to your personal growth; it nudges you in the right direction to step out of your comfort zone, challenge yourself, and seize an opportunity for great big strides in your life.
Here’s an example:
Imagine you’re a business owner and there’s this really cool networking event a colleague told you about or that you came across on social media. You research the event and there’s going to be great speakers there, great vendors, and great opportunities to make connections with fellow business owners. In an instance like this, you can leverage FOMO to your advantage; while you’re not too keen on the idea of socializing with brand new people, you’re excited about the possibilities of new connection and new business opportunities!
In this scenario, FOMO can be a good thing because it propels you to create channels in your life that contribute to a more elevated you.
But how do you know the difference?
Ultimately friend, that’s a question only you can answer. What I’ve found really helpful though is checking in with myself, my inner peace and motive before committing to an activity:
Am I going to this event because I’d get superficial validation from it? Because I’m worried I won’t be part of a flimsy social ecosystem? Because I’m fueled by lack?
Am I going because I’m excited for the opportunities I’m going to create from the activity? Because of the new, real connections with people I can make? Because I’m challenging myself to make strides toward positive growth?
Honest gut checks and trusting in your intuition always point you in the right direction.
Honest gut checks and developing your intuition help loads with your self-care too, and directly combat the excuse of negative FOMO (made a video for y’all, let me know if it resonates).
I’m curious about your story– have you experienced either the negative or positive types of FOMO? Has the negative FOMO been a deterrent to your self-care? Has the positive FOMO been a propellant of your self-growth? Would love to know your experience, share with me below!
Sunny Dawn Johnston ❤️