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Four steps to face FOMO

When you’re online, others lives always seem better than yours? Maybe you’re suffering from FOMO. Learn how to identify and avoid it.

Four steps to face FOMO
Margarida Gamboa
by Margarida Gamboa
Do you know about this expression that appears on the web? FOMO means “Fear of Missing Out” and it’s related with the false perception of perfect life that web gives you. The effect, on the other hand, it’s pretty real!

When you are at your Instagram, Facebook or Twitter other people's lives always seems better, happier and funnier than yours? If it affects your self-esteem, creating a feeling of jealousy and helplessness, as if you were missing something big, you’re suffering from FOMO. It can apply to anything: from a party to vacations or a work opportunity.

How to identify FOMO?

In fact, FOMO is not exclusive to the web. It has been around for centuries and it has only been scientifically studied in the 90’s. With social media, FOMO becomes more evident because now it’s so easy to compare your life with others. So, how do you identify FOMO symptoms?

. Checking - you’re always checking what others are doing on your social media pages;

. Anxiety - you get anxious when you don’t know what your friends are doing or when you see they are having more rewarding experiences than you;

. Fear of loss - if you’re not invited for something or understand that your friends are living and experiencing something that you’re not;

. Sharing - it’s important for you to share the details of your life on social media. When you have time and even when you are with friends you like to take pictures and share them;

. Feedback - when you post or tweet you’re always looking for feedback - likes, shares, comments. Mainly from your friends;

. Silence - it’s not the effective silence but the absence of events that bother you and triggers the “bells” in your mind.

4 steps to avoid FOMO

To avoid FOMO it’s important to cultivate self esteem above all the things. Meanwhile we give you some tips to minimize, prevent or avoid FOMO.

. Goals - set goals for your life. Whether it's personal life, career or hobbies. It's important that these goals are applicable in the real world, not just online, so they can get you away from social networks. If it's activities that imply being fully focused and not having social media connection, the better! Have you thought about dancing, taking a cooking class, signing up for karate, setting up some football games with friends, going to graduate school? …

. Clean your tabs - clear your tabs (as well as your social networks) of everything that can demotivate you. Don't focus on what you don't have. Focus on what you are and what you will achieve.

. Keep a diary - instead of having all your life online, keep a diary or a journal, with your memories, photos, plans, goals. This can help you to shift from public approval to private appreciation. Have you ever tried a bullet journal? It’s a creative way to organise your present and your future.

. Be glad to do nothing - Although you have goals, an agenda, and new focus, it's important to realize that you don't need to be everywhere, be able to do everything and be perfect. Who likes you won't push you away because you say one “no”. Find your balance.

If you’re suffering a lot of stress, read also about Burnout.
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