Monday, May 13, 2019

Relaxation and the Joy of Missing Out (JOMO)

We've all heard of the term FOMO, meaning "Fear of Missing Out", but not everyone has heard of the term JOMO, the "Joy of Missing Out".

FOMO is the idea that whatever others have, or are doing, is somehow better than what you have, or are doing (even if it's not really true), and that you are somehow missing out on something.

FOMO tends to lead many of us to try to live life to its fullest and take in all we can--while we can.  But eventually choosing one activity, piece of information, or item means we are NOT choosing all of the other possibilities.  Trying to choose everything doesn't really work and trying to say "yes" to all options can eventually wear a person down.  It can lead to overloaded schedules, overwhelming amounts of information, and eventual burnout.

Where one individual may feel compelled to photograph proof of all the activities they have actually participated in, others may view the posted photos from social media with a gnawing belief that they must be missing out on something.  This ongoing frustration causes a sense of unease and internal pressure to constantly be on the go, while paralyzed by the indecisiveness of having too many options.

JOMO is the realization that sometimes it's perfectly fine to miss out on stuff other people are doing.  Sometimes it's okay to just unplug, unwind, and relax from the attentive, ongoing comparisons with others and what they are up to.  You don't have to unplug all the time, but taking breaks in order to appreciate the Joy of Missing Out, can be good for your mental health and psychological well being.

Sometimes we need to go offline, or say no to an activity we don't want to do, for which we might otherwise say yes to.  We don't always have to be at the bar, party, social gathering, game, concert, etc.  It's okay to read a book, have a quiet conversation with a friend, soak in the tub, or just listening to some music.

The bottom line is to make the best use of your time and try to reduce your comparison shopping among the many activities available in the world.  The Joy of Missing Out means you don't have to be a part of every gathering, event, or activity.  You don't have to have every piece of information, or be a part of every forum, email list, or social gathering.  Finding the joy in missing out means finding the peace and relaxation of choosing a slower pace now and then that isn't about comparisons or missing out.

Thanks to Ron Mader for the great image