FOMO - Fear of Missing Out

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FOMO - Fear of Missing Out
Stefan Ivanovic

Glopinion by

Stefan Ivanovic

Jan 19, 2020

Have you ever wondered why you can’t stop collecting unimportant information from all over the Internet and that makes you stressed? Maybe you have FOMO!

FOMO is not just about the social life of an individual. It seems that today, more than ever, many are questioning the validity of decisions regarding the direction of one's life, including questions about partnership, friendship, education, career ...

In 2013, the word FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) was officially listed in the Oxford English Dictionary. To date, this acronym has been maintained as an explanation for a specific fear, mainly the so-called. millennial generations. It signifies the anxious feeling that occurs when we think we are missing out on something interesting that is happening elsewhere at that moment.

And while the fear of missing out (better opportunity) has always been present in people, the advent of FOMO social networks has begun to manifest itself more strongly than ever. In other words, because of the constant insight into the (brighter side) of the lives of friends and acquaintances, many have become constant victims of the persecuting sense of the inadequacy of their own lives.

Can technology disrupt close relationships?

Social networks and FOMO

A typical example of FOMO would be the anxious feeling that in the age of modern technology, people often appear on Fridays or Saturdays as they watch the announcements of their friends' pastimes from the comfort of a couch, wondering: "Is it possible for everyone to have fun better than me? ! ".

But FOMO is not just about the social life of an individual. It seems that today, more than ever, many are questioning the validity of decisions regarding the direction of one's life, including questions about partnership, friendship, education, career…

Because, daily checking social networks shows that everyone else seems to have better careers, more fulfilling lives, more exotic trips and even a happier family. While many are aware that content presented on social networks is just the outer facade of one's life, it does not help them much to quell the anxious feeling of being left out, fearful of missing out on a better opportunity offered to them elsewhere, beyond their current life-frame.

Resistance to FOMO

Still, some people seem to be more resistant to fear of missing out than others. So what is FOMO related to?

A recent survey of first-year psychologists at Carleton and McGill University examined the association of fear of missing out with increased stress, negative emotional states, and sleep-induced fatigue.

The researchers were also interested in which days FOMO occurs most often and how often. The results showed that FOMO was present throughout the day, but mostly at the end of the working week and in the evening (remember the example from the beginning of the text).

Also, people who felt they were being squeezed and burdened with business and student responsibilities had a higher FOMO, and also the feeling of anxiety from missing out was more present in those subjects who were more tired and more stressed.

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