FOMO. Commonly known as 'Fear Of Missing Out' - a phenomenon spreading among people young and old as the subconscious response to not being included in, or not being on the same path as, your friends or peers. Our fears are rooted in the idea that there is only one route to happiness, love, acceptance, and success. Many of us believe that the trail to the former four "endpoints" is to do what pleases others and makes us more likeable. I am on a journey of uncovering the truth: that this is simply untrue. I call it a journey because I often ebb and flow from confident and calm, to jealous and desperate, enthralled in a sea of 'FOMO'.
When I see that my friends are all hanging out without me and I did not even get an invitation, I ask myself, "again??? Why am I so unlikeable to these people? What makes me the only person they did not want to have around?" Usually the only reason I find out about it at all is because people post every social event on their social media pages. I suppose that is my problem with social media - that it is a constant comparison of our "best moments" that we share. Though some try to make it authentic, I have to point out that social media was simply not designed for that purpose. So although social media is what you make it, there will always be an aspect that makes it different from your reality. I thought about my reality. When I am with my friends and having a great time, I do not post it on social media. Instead I am fully engaged and present in the company I keep and I am nowhere near my phone. I am not saying that this is better, but I am putting into perspective that my social media posts do not even come close to depicting the love and light and magic that exists in my life. Therefore, the comparison game is useless and fruitless.
When I really thought about it, I realized I did not even want to be with these people on one particular evening that had me feeling left out. My boyfriend and I had plans to make dinner and watch Game of Thrones, and I wanted to take a heavenly lavender epsom salt bath. Even more, the night before I had gone out with my other friends and we had such a wonderful time and I left feeling so full of love. Why would I let that love slip out of my hands the next day when I see I was not included in another group's plans? What purpose does that serve me? It doesn't. FOMO simply does not serve us. Instead what we should fear is how we go about mindlessly operating through our lives as if we do not have control over our mindset and actions. We should be terrified of the time we spend scrolling on our screens, and how each image leaves a little impression on our minds. We should be so, so scared that our lives may go by without us realizing our true desires and finding our unique happiness because we are too concerned about what might make us more palatable to other people.
What makes you truly happy? What are your goals? What are you doing to live your best life everyday? Who do you love & how often do you spend time with them? Do you spend time with people so that they will like you, or become you genuinely are fond of their presence? Are you happy with the path you are on? What can you do today to serve yourself, and become your greatest version?
Ask yourself these questions the next time you feel you are missing out to avoid mindlessly operating through this valuable time on Earth.