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FEATURE: An article on how to deal with the 'Fear of Missing Out' (FOMO), because wouldn’t it be nice if you drove your life calmly and at your own pace?

By AnnJellica MarasiganPublished 23 days ago 4 min read
Photo by Olesya Yemets on Unsplash

As we navigate our adulting life, it is inevitable to feel the pressure of life; and sometimes, it gets worse as we scroll online and view the highlights of our mutual friends’ lives on social media – having fun, attending parties, vacations, out of town trips, juggling to work, receiving awards, and such. Then, here we are peeking at their videos and photos with a deep sense of envy and feeling the pressure once again. Gradually, the sense of being left behind and missing something in our lives also engulfs us because others are experiencing better than we are — the fear of missing out (FOMO) that takes a toll on our self-esteem and happiness.


By Michael Heise on Unsplash

The 'Fear of Missing Out' (FOMO) is not new in this era. FOMO has existed since then even before the advent of social media, according to Erin Vogel, Ph.D., a social psychologist and an associate professor at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.

Also, the idea of FOMO has only been studied more often during the past few decades, starting with a 1996 research paper by Dr. Dan Herman, a marketing strategist who coined the term “Fear of missing out”. Then, since the rise of social media, the FOMO has accelerated in phenomenal ways over the years.


By ROBIN WORRALL on Unsplash

Social media platforms or applications have a contribution in terms of worsening the fear of missing out. The use of social media and smartphones is associated with a greater experience of FOMO and not because of the age and gender of a person, according to a study in the Psychiatry Research Journal.

It is mainly because seeing the posts and highlights of mutual friends on social media may lead to comparing our lives with theirs, bringing the intensity of fear of missing out. Hence, to deal with it, here are some tips to detach oneself and overcome the FOMO.


  • Digital Detox
By Sébastien Bourguet on Unsplash

Saturating too much on social media without limitation can increase FOMO. Thus, to slowly detach yourself from the fear of missing out, it would help if you lessen the daily consumption of social media platforms. Also, it would reduce FOMO from viewing the stories or the posted highlights of your friend’s social media. So, you’ll avoid comparing your current life situation to theirs.

Other than that, once you do, exploring the world and trying new things and hobbies outside the social media world would also help your detachment, particularly in navigating your life and cultivating your skills, and most importantly your whole being. With that, you would not just avoid being envious of others' lives because, through that, you’ll be able to live your life at your own pace.

  • Have a Real Connection
By Helena Lopes on Unsplash

As you take your social media detox, it would also be best to have a real engagement or a connection with your loved ones whether it is your lover, a friend, your family, or even your beloved pets. With the help of their presence and comfort, you will be able to bond by making plans with them, share your laughter and what bothers you, and you will get to feel and experience the real and deep connection you deserve. Also, you would not feel the need to fit in, and the sense of loneliness.

  • Have a Journal
By Cathryn Lavery on Unsplash

Planning your day with your journal would also help to decrease the sense of FOMO. Hence, journaling your plans like the fun things you want to accomplish for a day might be better for your sanity.

Aside from that, you may also keep your photos and great memories in your journal. So, you would have something to look back on, particularly in the upcoming years.

  • Focus on what you have and Practice a Gratitude Mindset
By Giulia Bertelli on Unsplash

Above all these things, focusing on what you have is also crucial if you want to live your life peacefully, without feeling the pressure and the fear of missing out. Moreover, if you think that you still want to achieve something in your life, keep in mind to be kind to yourself and take it slow. Just don’t forget the rule: One step at a time.

It would also be much better if you simultaneously practice exercising the gratitude mindset by starting your day away from your social media, being grateful for what you have accomplished, and telling yourself the self-affirmations: “Everything will be fine”, “we have our own timeline”, “I will be fine”.

With these things, you would be able to live your life with the absence of pressure, dissatisfaction with yourself, and FOMO.



Dealing with FOMO is not a linear process, and along the way, it is not impossible to meet obstacles. Nonetheless, it is still fine as long as we try to seek for strength and motivation to fight with it.

Lastly, and most importantly, always remember to be gentle to yourself, and accept that we, individuals, have our timeline and paces of life. Just because it happened to others, doesn’t mean that you are invalidated, and being missed out. It’s just that, we have different paths to navigate; and remember to stick with yourselves and to your timeline, to avoid the pressure and fear from what we see on social media — not everything we see online is the picture of reality because sometimes that’s merely how people want to be perceived.

Also, do not forget to find solace and joy in your own lives.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you drove your life calmly and at your own pace?

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About the Creator

AnnJellica Marasigan

A Senior Journalism student who has a great passion for story-telling and self-discoveries.

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    AnnJellica MarasiganWritten by AnnJellica Marasigan

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