Today, I will be introducing the slang JOMO (joy of missing out), but let us first go and do a biopsy on its paternal acronym FOMO(fear of missing out).
Assuming none of you have been living under a digital rock, you must have somewhat heard of all the skeletons in that closet. In fact, it became so much of a fad that oxford dictionary adopted it in the year 2014.
The term contrary to popular belief of being coined by some top-tier ad agency was actually coined by Dr Dan Herman, a marketing researcher. It was first and foremost used by a Harvard MBA named Patrick J. Ginnis, author of the book 10% entrepreneur as a way of defining workaholic managers who took on too much work out of the fear of missing out on a positive trend.
I believe that there couldn’t have been a better misinterpretation than when it was taken into everyday vernacular in relation to social experiences and the act of missing out on them.
FOMO is used to portray the anxiety characterized by a desire to stay connected with others at all times which leads to mental anguish due to us theoretically missing out on a potential social activity. I know, I know, took me a while to wrap my head around what I just wrote as well.
Let us discuss a few shades of FOMO that have come to light since the notoriety of FOMO like-
FOMOMO: Fear of the mystery of missing out
This extreme case of FOMO that occurs only when your phone is broken or out of battery. It means you're afraid of missing out but not because of what you see on social media, it's what you don't see which is causing you angst. Deprived of seeing your friends' photos and check-ins, you automatically assume that everyone on your Instagram feed is having a jolly good time without you.
MOMO: Mystery of missing out
This is the paranoia that arises when your friends don't post anything on social media at all instead you're left with no option but to scroll obsessively through your Instagram feed and stories searching for clues. Ever considered that maybe the others are practically doing the exact same thing and hence all of us are just wasting time doing the same thing which is utterly pointless.
BROMO: When your 'bros' protect you from missing out
An act of solidarity from your friends. If they've been out the night before, they'll deliberately refrain from posting photos of the fun they were having, out of the fear of making you feel left out. (I don’t think my friends have that high of an E.Q but I’ll let it pass)
FOJI: Fear of joining in
The polar opposite to MOMO; if you suffer from FOJI, you're far less likely to keep your friends updated on Facebook and Instagram because you're not quite sure what to post and you're worried that nobody will like or comment on your photos. (My fellow FOJI personalities out of the hundreds of people if not thousands that your friends are following do you think they will specifically stop by your account to ostracize it. If so, please check your narcissistic superiority complex at the door and if it’s the likes and comments you are bothered about then I believe the only way to increase likes would be to posting more so that more people start following you and hence more likes. P.S, commenting can be turned off and this is just one possible explanation not me being judgemental.)
SLOMO: Slow to missing out
In this case, your anxiety is probably justified. Here, you assume everybody is having a better time than you as you're asleep. It’s when you wake up the next morning and log into Instagram. At that moment you are awestruck as your timeline is littered with photos of the night before. (People, frankly speaking, what is the biggest thing you have ever missed this way and if you keep living in the past like this and regretting stuff then that essentially means there is nothing for you to look forward to in life which if we go by the global average is at least another 50 years)
FOMO as we clearly see has an adverse effect on our psyche causing unwanted anxiety and stress. we are letting this happen to us, the very humans who have innumerable careers related to human psyche ranging from psychotherapists, psychologist, psychiatrists to counsellors. We are the ones who came up with E.Q but somewhere along the way we just gave in and lost control which needs to be taken back.
Now that we are well versed in the phenomena that are FOMO let’s finally get down to our very own superman “JOMO”.
JOMO: JOY OF MISSING OUT
In today's velocious society wherein a flurry of social events floods our calendars on a daily basis, we tend to forget one simple trait all of us share, the act of being finite.
This quality binds us from being in two places at once and therefore indicates that we will all miss out on things throughout our life as is our fundamental design, for better or for worse.
JOMO is just a way of coming to peace with that fact. It is all about understanding yourself, your needs and your desires whilst choosing to live in a way that energizes you but to fully embrace this joy of missing out, we need to better understand what’s driving our fear of missing out which I hope you started to get from the saga on FOMO I wrote above. For those of you who agree with this viewpoint, I know a regimen that might help us go from hyper-stressed FOMO sapiens to calm JOMO sapiens.
1.Disconnect-It refers to disconnect from the factors that constantly remind you of missing out on things namely social media which in essence means technology, not for life but maybe an hour a day for starters.
2.Reflect- Clear your schedule by creating unstructured spaces of time for you where you legit do nothing(by this I mean no work) as it gives you a sense of which activities you actually enjoy. Watch your favourite movie, play board games maybe go for a walk with no destination.
3.Reconnect- Rather than reconnecting on the Internet, start by conversing with a friend or family member. Pay due attention to the conversations, see how you feel or reconnect to yourself by indulging your love of photography, music, writing or hiking. If you want to reconnect online, first take a breath. Ask yourself, “Am I sure?” Recognize whether going online will leave you feeling distracted, depleted or uneasy. If so, choose to connect in another way.
4.Continuous Testing-One way of deciding whether an activity is worth doing might be to imagine yourself somewhere down the road looking back and whether your to-be-self would totally judge you for that activity or not. If you, after all, this are still a non-believer, let us go to the foremost authority on how one should live the ones who have run out of time. People have always been seen expressing regret and remorse towards missing out on things but hardly ever do they talk about missed parties or drunken weekends. They regret the other stuff like not spending more time doing things they loved, not taking time out for themselves. However morbid the message they convey seems at the first glance on further reflection it is quite elating.
There is a whole culture built around JOMO with phrases like Netflix and Chill (I meant the former but that’s up to you) so why not embrace it, it’s not like it could do any more harm. I might have taken examples of social media and partying to explain my point but I don’t have anything against it as with JOMO, however, you don't have to stay in to experience it.
JOMO simply means that you are doing what you want to do, at your own comfortable pace, as soon as you want to do it.
This state of simply being or introspection leading to the act of fumbling onto a newfound clarity and it's not spirituality that I am preaching here but maybe to some extent, peace of mind. I know it helped me find some peace and maybe that’s why I am such a strong proponent of it so go for it, last I checked we still live in a free world. (frankly the best joke I have ever cracked).
According to a post by Eric Barker in TIME, people who are already insecure may be more susceptible to feeling this way. For example, when faced with excessive Instagram and Facebook posts about other people's lives, it can feel like you're always out of the loop with someone.
"But when you're caught in the loop of FOMO you tune out the real world and tune in to the fake one," Baker wrote. The research shows the same results as people with FOMO stop paying attention to life and turn to social media for their happiness cure."
Ever focussed while looking at a cup while pouring water into it?t
The water level increases as you continue pouring water for a long time.
I have come to believe that the world is that cup, the passing time our history of events and the level increase representing our cornucopia of biblical mistakes with social media being able to heavily influence our mind into what to do being the latest one. Humanity has finally reached a point where the cup is about to overflow if it hasn’t already and if we don’t start dealing with them this instance by taking a step back or even two if needed to look where we are heading.
Alas! If, the only species truly capable of being able to use their minds and implement their free will can no longer do so efficiently as well as effectively. Where are we headed then?