FOMO vs. Values

Photo by PlusLexia.

If you've never heard of FOMO, then I expect you've already mastered it. You are off living your life, enjoying what comes without worrying too much about the things that don't, secure in your place in the world.

Meanwhile, the rest of us are sitting here, watching you rock your life, experiencing FOMO: fear of missing out.

Recently I came across a suggestion to help reduce FOMO when it hits: check it against your values.

In this case, the values I am referring to are where you want to focus your time and efforts. Are you in a phase of life where career is paramount? Time with family? Friends? (Which friends?) Is school or personal growth the most important thing to you right now?

Here's how it can help: if your values right now are centred mostly around family or friends, then you can use that as a buffer against career-related FOMO. Instead of feeling left out because you aren't working on that new project (or worse, letting fear drive you to volunteer for it even though it means working lots of overtime), you can know that it's being taken care of while you focus on what matters to you.

If, on the other hand, your focus right now is more career or personal growth-oriented, then your values can remind you that you may be missing out on the party, but you are not missing out on the long-term growth or a vital opportunity that matters to you.

It won't make all the feelings go away, but it will put them in perspective!

The best part of this? If you got the order wrong on your values, it will become painfully obvious! If you are reminding yourself that you X is more in line with your values when actually, your heart cares more about Y, your heart will make it known! Not by whining that you don't want to miss out, but by feeling way off about the lie you are telling yourself.

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