What’s FOMO?3 min read

FOMO is an acronym which stands for the expression Fear of Missing Out. It is an anxious feeling you get when you feel other people might be having a good time without you. Majority of the youngsters these days face such kinds of problems. It was also officially added to the Oxford English Dictionary in 2013.

It is certainly a terrible thing to feel. It makes you always keep checking social media until you stop feeling missed out. You do these things to make yourself feel better and to no longer feel left out. Sometimes it makes you feel anxious and sometimes it doesn’t but most importantly where does it come from? Is there something we can do to stay away from feeling this way? 

These days people tend to check their social media right after they wake up, before they sleep and between every important work which means almost the whole day. FOMO comes from unhappiness and unhappiness comes from comparing one another on social media. We need to realize that whatever we see on social media does not define reality. There is a huge difference between social media and reality. Everything seems perfect on social media; everybody is living a perfect life out there but we should always remember that we are only seeing what these people are wanting us to see.   

As Swarthmore professor Barry Schwartz writes in his excellent book, The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less: “Stop paying so much attention to how others around you are doing” is easy advice to give, but hard to follow, because the evidence of how others are doing is pervasive, because most of us seem to care a great deal about status, and finally, because access to some of the most important things in life (for example, the best colleges, the best jobs, the best houses in the best neighbourhoods) is granted only to those who do better than their peers. Nonetheless, social comparison seems sufficiently destructive to our sense of well-being that it is worthwhile to remind ourselves to do it less. 

It is basically a rollercoaster of emotions. It is also possible that maybe you’ve also put an edited version of yourself on social media and it would’ve made someone else felt worse about them. Who knows, right? 

The worst thing is that we try to find happiness in others instead of finding it inside ourselves. I know it might sound cliché, but nobody can make us as happy as ourselves. Self validation is the key to self confidence but we only tend to see the bad in ourselves and we never appreciate those things in us which we should. The person who overthinks is more likely to be depressed, anxious and stressed. The one thing we do not try is preaching gratitude. Instead of finding problems in everything, if we start being thankful for the things we have, we would be much happier. I know it is not as easy as it may sound but at least we can try. Just live every moment and appreciate every little thing you’re lucky to have and hang in there, you’ve got this.

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