13 Feb 2016

I heard a radio programme recently about fomo - which means the fear of missing out, which is about people worrying they are not invited to a party or event, where people will be having a great time, that is promoted on Facebook, Twitter or other social media. Fomo apparently can cause anxiety and depression. Before dismissing this as just another example of the craziness and overuse of social media, I thought about how it may affect others if we broadened the meaning.

For me, maybe I experience, fohmo - fear of having experienced missing out. When I look at how other people seem to go effortlessly through their lives without overthinking and worrying about everything, I wonder what I have missed out on. What would it be like to wake up every day feeling happy and full of energy and looking eager to the day ahead instead of waking up after a restless night, grumpy and irritable even after thinking positive thoughts, writing positive ideas and smiling? What effect would that have had on my life, my relationships, my studies, my work and my family?

I wonder what it would be like to have people come to stay or organise a small gathering without worrying, writing endless lists, and stressing about trivial things. What have I missed out on with my moods, my dark thoughts and my endless worrying? I look at friends who are able to relax and cope with life's dramas and routine activities in their stride.

I am too old to worry about everyone having a good time at parties I was not invited to, but I do ponder about what I have missed out on, I do not fear it, I acknowledge it and accept it. Sometimes it makes me sad, but it's the past and I cannot change it.

At the moment I really don't think I fear missing out on anything, but then again I may not know what I am missing out on!

So do you have a fomo from the present or past?


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