If you’re missing a party because you have to work overtime on a Friday night, or can’t go try a cool restaurant with your friends because it’s out of your budget, you’ll probably experience what’s known as FOMO. 

FOMO stands for “fear of missing out” and, for a lot of us, it’s a fairly common feeling.

Why? Well, it’s simply impossible to be everywhere at once. Sometimes life gets in the way of your ideal social calendar. Work, school, feeling sick, not enough money, prior commitments… there’s plenty of things that can force us to miss out on any given experience. 

When this happens, it can cause anxiety and frustration. Are you missing out on something great? Are people having fun without you? 

The antidote to FOMO

It’s human nature to feel FOMO, but that doesn’t mean it’s healthy emotionally or mentally. In times when you’re experiencing FOMO, it’s important to not get bogged down, or worse, depressed. 

Attempt to replace feelings of FOMO with feelings of JOMO, or “joy in missing out.” Recognize that you don’t need to attend everything, and instead of wishing you were somewhere else, focus on where you are and what about that place or experience you’re grateful for.

JOMO challenges us to replace comparative and anxious thinking with grounded, joyful thinking.

Simply put, JOMO is about being present and practicing gratitude. When we take the time to be grateful for what we have and where we are, we are less likely to wish we were doing something somewhere else.

If you’re constantly fretting about missing out on something, you’re focused on comparing yourself to other people and their lives or experiences. JOMO challenges us to replace comparative and anxious thinking with grounded, joyful thinking. 

When you make the conscious, thoughtful decision to find the best in your situation, you’ll find the feeling of FOMO much less intense.

5 reasons to feel JOMO

There’s some things you simply have to miss out on. But, that’s no reason to stress! 

In situations when you have to miss out, there’s plenty of reasons to feel joy. 

Don’t believe it? Here’s some examples.

  1. Do what YOU want. When you break away from the (real or virtual) activities of your social group, you’re in charge. Now, you get to do exactly what you want to do, rather than relying on group dynamics.
  2. Recharge. Especially if you are an introvert, missing out lets you recharge your social batteries and enjoy your own company.
  3. Take care of yourself! It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by a busy schedule. When you choose to miss out on something, you can spend time doing things you might otherwise be too “busy” for, like exercise or self-care.
  4. Be spontaneous. Sometimes missing out means more space and time for spontaneity and chance encounters. That’s what makes life exciting!
  5. Supercharge creativity. Missing out can enhance your creativity! People are more creative when their minds are free from distractions and other stimulants.

In any situation, you can find joy and something to be grateful for.

So, the next time you get FOMO, go ahead and give JOMO a try. In any situation, you can find joy and something to be grateful for. And remember, the grass isn’t always greener on the other side!