While FOMO (Fear of missing out) seems to affect an increasing number of people, there is an opposing movement gaining traction – JOMO (Joy of missing out).
In the last blog post, we talked in detail about what FOMO is, its brief history, and the dangers of it. Today, we will talk about a better alternative.
JOMO, or Joy of missing out, is a movement that embraces disconnection from technology and living in the moment in an attempt to find a balance between the two. It allows us to move at our own pace, and pay attention to what is happening in front of us right now – to feel the wind on our cheeks, to hear the chirping of birds and children’s laughter, to inhale the smell of freshly brewed coffee or the smell of freshly cut grass. Those little, seemingly unimportant things, are the ones we should fear missing out on.
When you’re old and looking back on your life, I bet you won’t regret not getting more ‘likes’ on Facebook and Instagram or more followers on Twitter. But what you may regret is not living life on your own terms or spending more time with the people you love.
We need to be aware of our priorities so we can all be sure that doesn’t happen. It’s deeper things – missed opportunities to love, to explore our curiosities, and to spend time well – that counts the most. It’s time we choose joy over fear. Empowerment over anxiety. JOMO over FOMO.
You don’t need to compare your life to others to feel successful. We can live life in the slow lane, appreciate human connections, be intentional with our time, attention, and energy, and practice saying ‘no’ more often. We can miss things and be happy for it. Because when you miss something, you gain something else.
When we disconnect from FOMO, we automatically have more free time and energy to focus on our true priorities. The ones which will bring us happiness and joy. Likes, tweets, and social media, in general, won’t ever give us that. Only short bursts of dopamine – instant gratification.
With the rise of the smartphone and social media addiction, JOMO is needed as a therapeutic and intentional choice of self-care. It’s an antidote to FOMO.
They say numbers never lie, so let’s check the harsh reality of the modern world, and the saying: “But I only use social media for a few minutes or hours per day to catch up with friends and the world.”
When we put ‘only a few minutes of social media’ into the calculator, we get the following:
5 minutes per day = 30,4 hours per year
15 minutes per day = 91,2 hours per year
30 minutes per day = 182,5 hours per year
1 hour per day = 365 hours per year
When I saw the results of ‘only a few minutes’, I was terrified. Now multiply that by 5, 10, 15, or more years. Imagine what could you do with all those precious hours. Knowing this, there really is no excuse for not having enough time to pursue your deepest and biggest dreams and goals.
P.S.: The above numbers are for social media use only. Now add TV time, games, and other activities where we spend a lot of time and be prepared for a heart attack.
Imagine the following scenario. You’re on vacation with your precious family. Finally, this time of year. You’ve been waiting for it for 11 months. And now you’re here. On the beach with your wife and two beautiful children. You talk to your wife and tell her: “Honey, I will leave you and the kids here and I’m going to the hotel to answer some work emails for an hour or two, and then I’ll join you here.” She’s an amazing and understandable partner so she agrees.
You help them set everything up, inflate toys for your kids, and start walking away. Your little girl runs towards you and tries to stop you.
“Daddy, daddy where are you going? Aren’t you going to play with me?”
“Umm…I’m sorry honey. Daddy has to go and answer some emails, but I promise I’ll be here in an hour or two.”
“No, daddy. Please stay here. I want to play with you. Please, please!”
Would you go answer some probably unimportant work emails from people you barely know, or would you play with your daughter, and spend a wonderful time at the beach with your family?
Scenario 1. FOMO – Fear of missing out
You leave your little girl in tears and go work just for an hour. Hour turns into two, and then three. By the time you return to the beach, the sun sets, your kids are tired and want to go home. Your wife is angry with you, and the kids are disappointed.
Scenario 2. JOMO – Joy of missing out
You set your things down and go play with your daughter. First, you make a sandcastle with her, then go and conquer the waves with your son. You have a meaningful talk with your wife. Laughter, happiness, and freedom can be felt in the air.
I am asking you again? Which scenario would you choose?
Instead of having FOMO over silly experiences on social media, we should be worried about having FOMO over missing moments with our loved ones, watching sunsets, having meaningful talks, laughing, walking barefoot on the grass, enjoying good food, and living life to the fullest.
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