FOMO: The Fear of Mindlessly Operating

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'. 

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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.

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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. 

Love always,

Kristen Joy

My Voice & My Vice

I'll be honest, I do not know exactly where I am going with this blog post. I just feel like I need to get something out of my head and into the physical realm of writing. Today I had a lovely morning. I drank my lemon water, took my probiotic, ate my oatmeal with extra local berries on top and sipped my green tea from a beautiful ceramic mug. I admired my plants and I listened to my body. I put on Lorde's new acoustic version of Melodrama and rolled out my yoga mat, moving through rounds of sun salutations and pausing where I felt I needed. I continued the songs on repeat and allowed my hips to sway in crescents like the moon. I made curry and packed a lunch of delicious vegetables and hummus with rye bread and cashew spread. And, I did not take a single photo of any of this. I didn't feel any photo could capture the magic and subtle perfection that my morning held so delicately in her hands. The very fact that I still felt this bliss and peace without sharing it now has me puzzled on whether I need to share at all. 

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I love sharing because it helps people. A few hours of compliments on my writing or photos is not alluring enough for me to lust after. However, the feedback from people saying I helped them or made their day better is like a drug. It is my mission to untether people from what limits their true self. I want to help everyone abandon ideas, patterns, and habits that do not make them happy or serve their true purpose. I feel my writing can do that, it has the potential, but what if nobody listens? What if I am speaking to an empty room? What if I become that tree that falls in the middle of the woods, and nobody hears? Everything I want to say has already been said, and so I often wonder if my voice is necessary at all. 

There is a large part of me that wants to move to a tiny village and walk to the market each day for fresh produce and talk to everybody I see in the street, then retreat to my cottage oasis and spend the day inside among breakfast, books, and bread, until I go for a run through the woods and it's just me and my thoughts and my heart beat that quickens and becomes so loud that I cannot hear myself anymore and I'm just there, breathing, with feet pounding on the forest floor. But then, there is this whisper that urges me to keep sharing. She tells me to keep writing. She hums a song that reminds me to speak my truth. While I cannot say what form that will take in the future, I suppose right now I will speak through written word and photos. In the end, it does not matter all that much anyways. I will always be my awareness observing my thoughts, whether I share them or not. 

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