Hello friends. My name is Taylor and I struggle with FOMO (Fear of Missing Out).
Dr. Dan Herman explains, “FoMO is experienced as a clearly fearful attitude towards the possibility of failing to exhaust available opportunities and missing the expected joy associated with succeeding in doing so. Simply put, it is concentration of attention on the empty half of the glass.”
I didn’t know this was actually a thing, until my friend Suzy pointed it out.
“Yes, that’s exactly what I have!” I exclaimed.
Looking back, there have been several instances of where my FOMO was in control.
We have a lot of movies filmed here in Chicago every summer, along with several TV shows throughout the year. Whenever I hear of filming happening near me I have to see if there is an exclusive opportunity to partake in. I hate when I see pictures posted online of someone having a cool experience that I could have had. This has led me to see the filming of Transformers 3, the set of Man of Steel, and even got to meet several of the actors from Chicago Fire.
When one of my favorite bands, Hillsong United, came for a concert, my wife and I arrived 4 hours before the concert, so that we could get the best seats available. As the doors opened my FOMO was in high gear as I pushed and ran to the front, to insure that we would have the best view possible.
When I was volunteering at a babies’ home in South Africa and had to work the late shift, I had a very hard time with my FOMO. Several friends and I lived on the property only a few feet from the babies’ home and I could often see them having fun or leaving to go somewhere exciting.
The day I met my wife, Karen, a few car loads of us were going to meet at this mall/flea market several miles away. It was such a big place (and the fact that I was with a married couple who didn’t care about hanging out with this cute girl as much as I did) that we never met up with the other group. I was constantly thinking of what fun they were having and what I could have been doing to get close to her.
My FOMO isn’t always a bad thing. I’ve gotten to experience some pretty cool stuff because of it. It can be a bad thing, if I let it.
The truth is that there is always something else. There is always something that “could be” better than what you are experiencing at the present moment. The possible opportunities can distract from your current situation.
I’m still wrestling with my FOMO, but I’m trying to be content with what I have and where God has me right now. Yes, there are those out there experiencing some pretty cool things, but so am I.
I missed out on getting to spend the day with that cute girl at the flea market, but now I get to wake up beside her each day. I’m not going to miss out on our daily adventures, thinking about other things I possibly could experience.
I will never again have 2 daughters who are 10 months and 3 1/2 years old. Their giggles and silly stories will never be the same. I am not missing out on this.
This is life. This is the good stuff.
Don’t miss out.