For those who don’t know, FOMO is “The Fear Of Missing Out.” Missing out on what? Everything.
A new survey conducted by mylife.com revealed that 27% of people check social networks as the first thing they do in the morning. 56% of people are afraid of missing out on events, news and important status updates if they are away from social networks.
We can laugh all we want and shake our head at the sad case of the world’s distracted youth, but here: I have FOMO too.
The other day I “fetched” email on my phone 4 minutes after I just did it. My brain needed a hey-does-anyone-like-me fix after 4 minutes.
The New Normal
Updates. Connections. Likes. News Feeds. Retweets. Followers. Photos. Hashtags. Notifications. Inboxes. Parties. Limited tickets. Flash mobs. Pop up stores. Must haves. 1-Day Only.
It’s harder than ever to get stuff done today not because there aren’t means and methods to help us be our best, but because there are meals and messages that can’t be missed.
We receive more information today on a daily basis than the average person did in their whole lives at the turn of the 15th century. IN THEIR WHOLE LIVES . If only Michelangelo was on Instagram, he could have REALLY spread word of his work. #backhurts #sistenechapel #newpaintings #lookup #god.
The fear of missing out is a by-product of the age we live in and it’s something we’ll always have to manage, but the scary danger is if this fear mutates into the fear of diving in, or: FODI.
Because when your self worth hinges on – and your focus hangs on – social information, your activity needle tips from doing to observing, from tinkering to gossiping, and from creating to circulating.
We all want to be connected. That is as human of a desire as there is. We don’t want to miss out on things that the group will be talking about.
But who’s speaking up for your life, your goals and your dreams while you’re speaking out about everything else?
The Realities Of Modern Life
You’re going to miss out on a lot of things. You always have. You always will. You just notice it a lot more now. Simply trying to maintain the superficiality of keeping up is like being on the north pole and trying to walk west. It’s just not going to work out. Bartunde Thurston is the most connected man alive and even he couldn’t keep up.
To do something great, you’re going to miss out on A LOT more things. To really make your mark on your life’s story, many things will have to be sacrificed: that party, that weekend, that evening out, that trip. To dive in, by definition means you will have to miss out. Get used to it.
FOMO Kills The Long Thought. If you don’t give your brain time to ponder things and keep avenues open, progress remains regressed.
Without the long thought, eureka doesn’t have a chance to chirp.
The Reality Of Losing Out
FOMO is real, inasmuch that our reactions to cool things, shows, restaurants, parties, events, and trips are very real. But FOMO becomes FODI which eventually deteriorates into ROLO: The Reality of Losing Out. Losing out on what? Your life and the things you say you want to do.
Don’t ever be so scared to miss out that you never end up truly diving in.
That reality sucks more than not having wifi when you need it.