I know you have the feeling of running and being busy all day, to catch up everything. You sense that pressure too, don’t you? Friends, work, chores, household, parties… Well, I got a question for you. Do you remember the feeling of being free? If not, I am here to give you a reminder.
Our everyday life is full of information. Our trying to catch up with everything make us feel like we are chasing something that can never be obtained completely. Current affairs, technology, politics, environment, economics, social life and the list goes on… Through this hustle and bustle, it is normal to feel tired. Like a “victim” of social change. It is both time and energy -consuming. Because we put too much effort to process and understand that huge amount of change to our environment. And due to that transformation, we may feel distracted of the point. The point of our everyday lives.
And I should admit that for years we made vast effort to connect with each other, but let me say that nowadays it is more challenging to be “disconnected” than connected. And I am referring to the new trend that is called FoMO (also known as Fear of Missing Out). Let me explain, how it started in social media and how it is spreading and affecting other aspects of our lives.
How did Fear of Missing Out start?
FoMO is the anxiety that someone feels when a) he notices that everyone seems to live a satisfied or happy experience, in which the person that noticed is absent or b) he lost an opportunity of social interaction and that leads to the thought of “what could have been [according to Wikipedia] or c) as I prefer to say it “Social Pressure”, playing the role of the victim. An example will make it more clear. My friend, X, posts a photo in facebook with our friends being in a party. But that day, I was sick and I couldn’t go. So, that situation makes me think “I should have been there. They seem to have so much fun. I wasn’t that sick, was I?” And this is the feeling of fear. The fear of missing out.
Why is this pressure happening?
As it is widely known, people use social media to keep in touch with other people and to socialize in general. Plus, it is free and gives you the opportunity to connect with people from all over the world. But it is also important to keep in mind that social media and the internet, in general, cannot replace the human interaction, the one to one interaction. This is also probably why people feel uncomfortable to look each other in the eyes or just to wander. For example, you can notice that when a discussion reaches its end or someone goes somewhere else for a while, we use to “check” our phones to avoid the in seconds discomfort.
What can I do to express that pressure?
Challenge yourself by trying to answer the 3 following questions:
a) How many times per day do I check my phone?
b) How do I react when I feel the need of communicating?
c) Which are my feelings when I check my friends having fun without me?
And probably, those 5 tips could help you as did with me:
1. Disconnect at night – or whenever you sleep. It is vital for our brain to rest for some hours. “Yes, but I have my alarm clock. Then, you should probably go and buy an old-fashioned clock.
2. Find something that fascinates you, a hobby. Go for a walk or ride your bike. Give some space for action to yourself.
3. Have self-discipline and time limitation in your internet access.
4. Try for one day (probably weekend) to be completely disconnected from your phone. Or even for 12 hours, show some self-respect.
5. Meditate or just think. You know when mobile phones were not that mainstream, we used to daydream or just imagine…
In conclusion, at some time we all are going to feel that situation of pressure, due to the expectations we have for ourselves. To be happy, sociable and connected all the time. What it is important and we tend to forget is the time for ourselves. The space that is our own and no one else is there. It can be a walk or a trip or just listening to music. That time “off” helps us clear our mind and reflect our actions and our personality.
**If you have lived anything similar or just liked this social phenomenon of that article, let me know through your comments**