The digital age has brought a new kind of anxiety: Fear Of Missing Out, or FOMO.
In a world where everyone can see what others are doing and catch all the latest trends at their fingertips, it’s easy to feel left out of the loop. It can also be hard not to compare life with others with the constant bombardment of pictures and posts of people’s seemingly perfect lives.
FOMO can leave you feeling inadequate, jealous, resentful, and anxious. While these are all normal and even human emotions, when experienced in excess, they can seriously drag your mental health.
That’s why we’ve put together this guide to help you combat FOMO and stay sane in the modern world! Here are our top tips for avoiding FOMO:
1. Take a Social Media Break
Many people find themselves stuck in a never-ending cycle of scrolling and comparing. To get out of this toxic habit, try taking a break from social media for at least a few days each month. Of course, you don’t have to delete your accounts, just turn off notifications and limit your time online. This can be a great way to regain control and practice self-care.
2. Unfollow, Unfriend, and Block
Social media is a great way to stay connected, but it can also be a breeding ground for envy and frustration. To curate a more positive experience, unfollow and unfriend people whose posts or comments make you feel bad about yourself or your life, and block any accounts that are particularly triggering. You can also turn on the “Restricted” mode in most social media platforms to further limit the visibility of certain posts.
3. Stop Comparing
There’s nothing wrong with inspiration and admiration, but comparing your life to the lives of others can be harmful. Remember that what you see online is not always an accurate representation of someone’s life – it’s usually just a highlight reel. So try to focus on yourself and celebrate your own victories instead.
4. Focus on Quality Time
Spending too much time online can also be mentally draining, and it often means you’re missing out on valuable real-life experiences with friends and family. Stop wasting all your time on the internet, and make more effort to invest in your relationships. Stay connected with your loved ones and plan quality time together – go for a hike, grab a coffee, have dinner – whatever works for you!
5. Create a Budget
Aside from the mental health aspects, FOMO can lead to impulsive decisions such as overspending in an attempt to keep up with the crowd. Instead of giving in to the urge to splurge on the latest trend or gadget, create a budget for fun, low-budget travels and activities. Doing this will help you stay on track and find satisfaction in experiences rather than material possessions.
6. Practice Mindful Meditation
Mindful meditation is also an excellent way to quiet the mind and stay present. Try focusing on your breath or repeating a mantra, like “I am enough.” Regular practice will help you stay rooted in reality and not get too caught up in what everyone else is doing. Even just 10 minutes a day of practice can make a big difference in your outlook.
7. Find a Positive, Supportive Community
Having people who understand and accept you can help you stay grounded and boost your confidence. If you don’t already have a community, find one. Join a local group or club where you can meet people with similar interests, or look for online support groups if that’s more convenient.
8. Set Boundaries
It’s also important to set boundaries and learn how to say “no” when it comes to social activities. Focus on experiences that bring you joy, not ones that just look good in pictures. This will help you stay clear-minded and authentic, and you’ll be able to make decisions that are right for you without the pressure of FOMO.
9. Set Goals
A few goals you want to work towards can help keep FOMO at bay. Start by writing down long-term goals, like getting a degree or starting your own business. Then break each goal down into smaller achievable milestones that you can work on daily. Working towards a more significant purpose can help you stay focused on your journey and prevent you from feeling jealous of others.
10. Go to Nature
Getting out into nature is a great way to break away from the hustle and bustle of life and give yourself some much-needed alone time. Whether traveling for wellness, hiking in the woods, hitting the beach for a breath of fresh air, or simply sitting in your garden, take some time to reconnect with yourself and the natural world to soothe your mind.
11. Talk to Someone
Finally, if you struggle with FOMO, you must talk to someone about it to gain perspective and put things in context. You can also seek professional help if needed – talking to a therapist or counselor may be the best option for understanding and managing your emotions around FOMO.
At the end of the day, it’s important to remember that FOMO is a state of mind. It’s all about how you perceive something, not necessarily what you’re actually missing out on. If you can re-frame your perspective and keep in mind that everyone moves at their own pace, breaking the cycle of FOMO will be easier.
Practice gratitude, be present in the moment, and remind yourself that life is not a competition or a race. You don’t have to do it all or keep up with everyone else – take your time, enjoy the journey and make decisions that are right for you.
By taking the time to understand and manage your feelings around FOMO, you’ll be able to release yourself from its grip and live confidently. And that’s something that no one can take away from you.