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10 Ways to Turn FOMO to JOMO

Jonathan Riley

“The only way to live is by accepting each minute as an unrepeatable miracle.” ~ Tara Brach

There are so many things to “do” in today’s hyper-connected world, from staying in touch with friends and family to attending parties and sporting events to learning new skills, that it is easy to fall victim to FOMO. According to research, those who have higher levels of FOMO also have lower levels of overall life satisfaction. Many things contribute to the fear of missing out (FOMO), but the biggest contributor is the prevalence of social media and the pressure it puts on its users to constantly compare their lives to those of others who seem to only share their best moments. People who are not happy with their lives tend to spend more time alone and have lower self-esteem, which, in turn, makes them more susceptible to FOMO and increases their likelihood of becoming addicted to social media.

Many researchers consider the joy of missing out (JOMO) as an antidote to FOMO. Learning to let go, worrying less, living in the moment, and fostering genuine human connections are all key components of the JOMO philosophy, which stresses the importance of being present and happy with one’s current life situation. JOMO gives us permission to acknowledge where we are and to feel emotions, whether positive or negative. It encourages us to slow down and savor the moment, to be more intentional with our time, to practice saying “no,” to take “tech-free breaks,” and to appreciate the people in our lives. Jomo is all about doing exactly what you want to do. And more importantly, finding the headspace to work out what this is and what makes you happy. The secret to happiness is accepting ourselves as we are in the here and now, and JOMO frees us from the pressure to constantly compare ourselves to others. It gives you the time to make plans, chase your goals, dreams and pursue other interests and hobbies. With the help of JOMO, you can stop stressing over whether or not you are making the right choices in your life and focus instead on living in the moment rather than comparing yourself to others. When you are no longer distracted by unhealthy levels of competition and anxiety, you are better able to focus on what really matters in life.

10 ways to put JOMO into practice

  • Set strict time limits for using social media and email.
  • Create a clear strategy and goals for your digital activities.
  • Turn off notifications and push alerts.
  • Include non-screen time activities in your daily schedule.
  • Take social apps off your phone and only use them on your computer.
  • Avoid using electronic devices for the first hour after waking up.
  • Use a monitoring app to track your online habits and distractions.
  • Give yourself a digital curfew before bed.
  • Be more present during your daily tasks instead of multitasking.
  • Take one day a week to unplug from technology.
  • Unsubscribe from uninspiring social media accounts and unfollow negative people.
  • Make time for meaningful interaction, introspection, and restorative rest.

In conclusion, people who practice JOMO have learned not to let the overwhelming variety of options and digital representations of the “perfect life” stress them out. Those who have experienced the joy of missing out are less likely to feel compelled to follow every online trend because they no longer feel the need to compete with others. Instead, those who engage in JOMO consciously slow down and focus on their own needs. They value quality over quantity, devoting their time and energy to relationships and pursuits that are truly meaningful to them rather than what they “should” or “must” do. Also, they make sure to schedule regular time for themselves, during which they can relax, think, or simply do nothing.