This New Year, Would You Try Switching From FOMO To JOMO?

The brain needs rest. Stress is a problem so often heard of these days. It is because people push themselves more than their bodies can take.

Fresh into the new year, I acquired an iota of knowledge courtesy of the Washington Post. Actually, it was quite enlightening, considering the fact that I am so poorly educated in social media vocabulary! I got to know a new acronym: JOMO, which breaks down to the “joy of missing out”.

It is all in a name these days

The article I came across offered a brilliant piece of advice about how we can bid goodbye to FOMO (“fear of missing out”) and instead embrace JOMO.

The anxiety of missing out on what is or could be happening around you is not at all a new ailment. From the time we have grasped the basics of social interactions, we have come across those nosy, inquisitive individuals who always want to be a part of every single activity that is happening around them. The only difference is that we now have a formal nomenclature to describe this state of affairs!

Why is it important to get rid of FOMO?

Socializing definitely has its advantages, and it is always a joy to catch up with friends and relatives and to know what is going on at their end. However, it is not necessary that you need to be a part of every single gathering.

If you sometimes skip a party or two, you are not missing too much in life. Instead, you can grab the opportunity to explore how you can utilize your time better.

It is true that social media has bridged distances, and thanks to it, we have come in contact with long-lost relatives and friends. But do try to resist the temptation of being obsessed with monitoring their SM accounts 24/7 in order to be apprised of every single detail of their lives. You do not need all of their information to give a shape to your existence, so relinquish that fear of missing out.

The advent of social media has revolutionized our lives in ways hard to imagine. Private lives have become way too public, and too much is out in the open. Sharing is caring as they say, but problems arise when things go overboard.

Human beings have the tendency of comparing themselves with others, and often the inclination is to assess what they do not have. This has a negative impact on one’s self-esteem and breeds the grounds for anxiety and frustration, not to mention the jealous monster that sometimes rears its ugly head. Rather than competing with others, why not try to be the best you can be?

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Take the opportunity to discover yourself. You may have wasted way too much time socializing. Slow down and see if there is something more creative that you could have done. You may have hidden talents that you are totally unaware of. Also, you will realize that there are activities that you have pushed to the back burner simply because you have spent too much time succumbing to peer pressure. Remember that it is not antisocial to take some time for your own well-being.

The brain needs rest. Stress is a problem so often heard of these days. It is because people push themselves more than their bodies can take. Adequate sleep guarantees optimal functioning of the brain. It is foolish to assume that you can work forty hours a week, party like crazy the entire weekend, and then perform at a high-efficiency level.

Mindfulness needs to be practiced for your emotional and physical health. It is the basic human ability to be fully present in the moment. We need to be aware of where we are and what we are doing without being distracted or overwhelmed by what is going on around us. Taking a walk in nature, meditating for a few minutes, or listening to relaxing music helps to restore balance and calm the senses.

Think about digital detox once in a while

Don’t worry that the world will fall apart if you stay away from the phone, the Internet, or your social media apps once in a while. Panic and confusion greeted the world on October 4, 2021 when there was a social media outage and Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and WhatsApp were globally unavailable to users for about 6 hours.

A study conducted after this incident came up with the findings that although people did encounter feelings of FOMO initially, they felt better thinking that the effects were worldwide. It is also interesting to learn that there were positive responses as well when respondents talked about experiencing a version of the joy of missing out.

Happiness is what we can create for ourselves. JOMO is essentially finding contentment through a process of self-discovery. While we live as civilized members of the society and maintain connections with its members, we also need to set our own priorities. It is up to us to strike the right balance and to realize that we are being authentic and true to ourselves without feeling any outward pressure.

So make your choice. You do not have to be everywhere all the time. Make a conscious decision, and be amazed to see how the joy of missing out is the gateway to genuine happiness.

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About the Author

Rashmi Bora Das

Rashmi Bora Das is a freelance writer settled in the suburbs of Atlanta. She has a master’s degree in English from India, and a second master’s in Public Administration from the University of read more...

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