FOMO: Fear of missing out.
We've all suffered from it. Honestly, it's pretty hard not to be a victim of FOMO in today's world of Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter. Our social media is bombarded with pictures and videos of people having, apparently, the time of their lives. We see a perfect highlight reel of people's lives and the cool, amazing things they've experienced every other day- it's a little hard not to feel left out, to feel like you're not as interesting, or to feel a tiny bit subpar.
The fear of missing out is a burden many college students seem to carry, especially among freshman. As my freshman year comes to a close, I can say with absolute certainty that I've dealt with my fair share of FOMO moments. When I would decide to have a night in at my dorm instead of going out with my friends, when I would scroll through my Instagram feed and see others at concerts or festivals I would've killed to go to, when I saw Snapchat stories of friends going on trips that looked so exciting, I definitely got that strange knot in my stomach and a horrible, nagging feeling that I would regret missing out on those moments everyone else seemed to be enjoying so much.
The funny thing is though, as much fun as it may look at the time, nine times out of ten we're not seeing the whole picture. That party that appeared to put all other parties to shame? They played lame music the whole night or it ended ridiculously early. That trip a group of your pals posted about nonstop for a week? They fought over the smallest things every other day.
We all get so caught up in showing the world we're having a fun time that we either forget to have one, or we force ourselves to do things we know we won't enjoy on the off chance that we might surprise ourselves. FOMO makes you think you need to be doing what everyone else is doing in order to have a good time. It makes you believe that your idea of fun isn't as great as someone else's. We end up wasting so much time doing things we don't really want to do because we don't want to feel left out, and in the end, we only feel unfulfilled when everyone else talks about the great time they had and we didn't. We end up only remembering how uncomfortable or annoyed we were.
Stop letting FOMO take away the actual fun, lively moments in your life.
Make memories doing the things you find enjoyable, not because the people in the dorm next door made you feel like you just had to go to have fun. Stop pressuring yourself to do things with people that have different tastes than you- there are plenty of other opportunities to make inside jokes and lasting memories with the people you care about, but you shouldn't have to force it.
If you make the effort to do the things you love or have always wanted to try, you'll never be consumed by the fear of missing out again. Stop letting the world dictate what's worth your time or not.