Do you always have know what’s going on with your friends and family and never want to miss out on anything? You may have the Fear of Missing Out syndrome, also known as FOMO, a psychological condition that plagues a growing portion of our population.
People with FOMO tend to overcommit and fail to fulfill their commitments, or may even choose to avoid agreements and commitments wherever possible. These people do so because they feel that making an agreement will force make them lose their opportunity to be a part of experiences that will give them greater satisfaction.
Research shows that the technology of today has complicated the problem even further for many people. According to a new survey conducted by MyLife.com, 56% of people are afraid of missing out on events, news and important status updates if they are away from social networks. Many people in the survey said they would even trade their other addictions to stay connected: About 26% said they would trade habits such as smoking cigarettes or reality TV to continue to access their social media sites. In addition, about 27% of survey participants said they visit social media sites as soon as they wake up.
It’s clear that more people than ever before are suffering from FOMO, thanks to social media and the fast-paced world in which we now live. This condition can affect work and family obligations and can even prevent you from living a productive life. If you are experiencing FOMO yourself, there are 5 ways in which you can overcome this condition, including:
- Stop overdoing and slow down. It can be frustrating to have a million things to do in a day, and not have enough time to complete them. If this describes your situation, you’re likely experiencing FOMO and need to slow down. You can start by reminding yourself to take more time to do the normal things in your day, such as driving to work, eating, talking, and any other tasks of everyday living. You can also put a note on your mirror, saying “Slow down” as a brief reminder every time you look at yourself.
- Prioritize what’s most important. It would be nice to do everything you want in a day, but at some point you’re going to have to face reality. Rather than focusing on doing everything and trying to be everywhere, concentrate on the most important things that need to be done. Keeping a to-do list and prioritizing by listing the most important tasks in a separate section above all other tasks is a good way to keep track. Using this list, focus on accomplishing the most important things first and then any other tasks you may have time for. If you can’t get to all of your tasks, move them to the next day.
- Don’t compare yourself to others. Do you feel others are doing more fun things than you are? Then you’re likely comparing yourself to others. It’s important to note that everyone is different and you can’t keep up with a lifestyle that is simply not yours and chances are, the glamorous lifestyle you’re aspiring to be may in fact be an illusion. In fact, one survey found more than 75% of people admit to making their lives seem more exciting on social media. Instead of comparing yourself to others, focus on yourself. You’ll experience a lot more happiness and feel more fulfilled if you do things on your own schedule.
- Do only one thing at a time. Today’s fast paced world may make you think that multitasking is necessary to be productive. A study conducted by Stanford University, however, shows that multitasking is less productive than doing a single thing at a time. Researchers have also discovered that multitasking can lower your IQ, damage your brain, and even prevent you from being successful in your career. Rather than trying to do everything, focus on doing one thing at a time. You’ll experience more success and will have more focus with every task you work on.
- Take control of your mind. One of the biggest contributing factors to FOMO is the inability to control your mind. Participate daily in mindfulness activities like meditation, yoga, and stretching that will help strengthen your concentration and put your mind to ease when needed. Also, think positively as much as possible and find quiet places to go where you can think without any distractions.
These five activities will help you overcome FOMO and start living a more productive, happy, and fulfilling life. You’ll also feel more in control of what you’re doing in your life rather than worrying about what everyone else is doing.