Hey, there fellow women and womxn! We’re back this week to chat about the “fear of missing out,” or FOMO as people like to use. Back in the day, I was pursuing what I thought would be good for my life: job titles, the right organization or institution, and to feel good about things (and myself). I was also looking for stability.
Looking back now, I can tell that this fear of missing out and trying to gain, and gain, and gain wasn’t the best approach to life. In the “gaining” came utter exhaustion and not knowing who I could really be, in-depth and with focus.
When we think of the fear of missing out, in my case I would have the following thoughts or beliefs:
- “I’ve got to do this…”
- “What if I don’t go do X and something bad happens?”
- “If I don’t commit to Y now then what if the opportunity doesn’t come again?”
…What about exchanging time and energy for money, to keep checking things off a list, but not in a healthy way?
Our Time and Energy is Precious
This fear of missing out can be detrimental if we’re overspent, over-focused, and overextending. I’ve been taught over the last couple of years that my time and energy are very precious resources—so are yours, friends. In reframing this, I shifted from this scattered, always-chasing lifestyle and renewed my life by looking at each day from a livelihood perspective.
Notice I’m not saying “lifestyle,” per se, but livelihood because a lifestyle mean anything. It could range from how we display ourselves on social media–especially in our culture–to even feeling somewhat empty inside because what’s external isn’t matching our internal selves.
So, I had to reassess a lot of these things over the years because I was harming my well-being via the choices I was making. That was only a few life chapters ago and I’m still recovering from the experiences. I’ll be honest with you, having major “a-ha moments,” brought both peace and pain. All at the same time. The peace in knowing that I made a healthy choice for myself, by walking away from something I dreamed of forever, and pain because I was doing that. And since then, since 2017, I’ve had to practice, in good times and bad, that same check-in:
“Is this not just the lifestyle I want, but the livelihood that I want?”
Life isn’t all about binaries, obviously; it’s also full of paradoxes and the “and moments.” This is one of the biggest lessons in this lifetime that I’m going through now.
What Do I Want My Future to Be Like?
When we really simplify, not in an absent-minded manner but for peeling off layers of stress, fears, and conditioning, we can do some amazing work from here on out. First, we can see how our values and evolution have changed, and how we’ve changed. Second, we can decide how we really want to show up for the decades to come.
To wrap up, this is a little deeper than talking about lifestyle—which is a starting point in conversation and reflection, for sure. If we can step back and look big picture, our essence and natural evolution is about showing up. However, showing up is more than action. We also need to try to not mess ourselves up for a lifestyle–especially one based on the fear of missing out–that isn’t aligned with our roots or our wellness. We all figure out in time what we “fear missing out on,” and why, which is incredibly useful.
So, I’ll ask you… What if we met each day and experience with this powerful question, “How am I missing out in life, in this experience?” Or, on a more positive note: “How am I adding to my life in this experience?” Then take notes, beautiful people.
After that, keep making a shift to what aligns, what evolves you… From there, we can show up fully, creating a sustainable livelihood, which will be foundational to your future, fulfilling work.
That’s it for this week, Friends! If you’re looking for more direct updates on the FSW world, check out the FSW Circle. Want more independent research? Hit up the FSW Quiz, and if you have any questions or comments, leave them below or contact me 1:1 this way. Have a beautiful week ahead!