Is FOMO Ruining Your Life?

Written by Dr. Perry, PhD
Image Credit: Pixabay


“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not.” ~Ann Brashares

We are living in an age of ubiquitous distractions and interruptions. Technology has given us the ability to stay connected to each other every single second of the day. You can watch events unfold throughout the world in the palm of your hand. Like no other time in history, you are given unparalleled access to the lives of others. In today’s society, there appears to be no such thing as oversharing. Unfortunately, access is granted without a warning stating “Beware… what you see may just be an illusion and may not be good for your mental health.”

We live in an instant world with disposable dreams. Unanchored to anything real we float from one distraction to another looking for the next thing to anchor ourselves. Our thoughts are constantly being interrupted. In the past, humanity has benefited from being able to sit quietly deep in uninterrupted thought. Currently, the beauty of being able to sit alone in thought and imagination is getting lost by the massive influx of information. It appears that moments of solitude are out of favor and divine inspiration has been lost in a sea of tweets and selfies.

Most of us have heard of FOMO, the fear of missing out and may understand it as a social media issue. Studies show that individuals who spend a lot of time on social media are more likely to develop a deep apprehension (fear) that they are missing out on experiences that they see others having. This can be a better vacation, social event or even a perceived better life. The constant viewing and comparing to others on social media, such as Facebook, may create an exhausting loop of social comparison followed by dissatisfaction in your own life.

Studies show that FOMO may have a negative impact on one’s life and mental health. Having the ability to have unlimited access to other people’s “perfect” lives often leads to automatically comparing your life to the life of others. Bombarded by professionally edited images and filtered lives, our own existence, by comparison, will be seen as less appealing and unfulfilling. After viewing these perfect images we may find ourselves focusing on what we want and lack instead of what we have.

As a result of the constant exposure to filtered images of unrealistic lifestyles, the expectations for our lives will become warped and unfeasible. Due to our frustration of not having the life we imagine we should have; we may begin to express our discontent toward those who care about us the most. For example, you may become dissatisfied and resentful that your spouse is not as perfectly groomed and flawless as the images you see on Instagram. Or, perhaps your family vacation will be less enjoyable because you are not yachting on the Riveria.

It is important to recognize how you feel after using social media. If you find that what you are seeing makes you depressed or anxious then you must take a timeout from the source. It is important to understand that what you are seeing is only a snapshot of someone’s life. There is no such thing as perfection in life and we never know what someone is going through in their private lives.

At the end of the day, we must learn to sit quietly in moments of self-reflection. We must be grateful and appreciate what we have and not focus on what we lack. Stay connected to your own existence and accept where you are currently in life. It is a waste of precious time to focus on where you are not. All life is a blessing and just because others may have better photography skills or a whole public relations team staging their photos it does not make their life better than yours.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this topic.

Kindly,
Dr. Perry


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Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology
M.A. in Clinical Psychology
B.A. in Psychology


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156 responses to Is FOMO Ruining Your Life?

  1. Maxine says:

    Great post! I love this sentence “All life is a blessing and just because others may have better photography skills or a whole public relations team staging the photos it does not make their life better than yours.”
    You are so right! Thank you Dr. Perry.

    Liked by 12 people

  2. Anon. Don says:

    For me Fomo is real problem. I find myself feeling so dissatisfied whenever I scroll through Facebook. I have to admit I take it out on my spouse. I am weaning myself off of it but it’s a slow process.

    Liked by 7 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Awareness is the first step. I am happy you are acknowledging how Facebook makes you feel. Stay the course✨

      Liked by 4 people

  3. Cheryl says:

    There is so much truth in this post Dr. Perry. Thank you for bringing attention to something I need to take an honest look at in my life. I always look forward to new content you write💖

    Liked by 7 people

  4. RobG. says:

    Another great post! We live in a disconnected and voyeuristic world. I was once on social media and I hated it. I am so much happier living my own life.

    Liked by 8 people

  5. Great post Dr. Perry! Yes we live in a world where our phones or tablets is a must…When I see books that says download it and read it on the go, I often say what happened to just holding the book in your hand and turning the page not swiping left or right. Hence why I take a break every now and then from social media to just get away from it and when I do its really calming.

    Liked by 8 people

    • I completely agree with you. We are living virtually more than we live for real! As much as technology has helped us, but it is making us lazier by the day! We all need a balance.

      Liked by 7 people

      • Thank you Parikhit. Yes technology and social media has helped us but at the same time its made us lazier, cruel, and most of all oblivious to really see what is around us. Yes I am guilty of taking pics of food or places I go too but I don’t do it every single time.

        Liked by 4 people

        • True. I do that as well, taking pictures but like you said I don’t over do it. Isn’t it nicer to just sit and stare at times and let every mundane thought vanish 🙂

          Liked by 3 people

  6. Sunnysideup says:

    I see social media especially Instagram as a bragging place. Everyone just trying to outdo eachother. It so silly!

    Liked by 7 people

  7. Very true! It is relevant to many problems we are facing today like anxiety, depression, stress, and the root cause is none other than excessive use of internet and social media. After long hours of working the little time we get at night for ourselves, rather than refreshing our minds, doing some healthy and productive stuff to re-energize our body for the next day, we waste our time scrolling through YouTube or using social media.
    Contrary to this, little moments of solitude, and that me-time we will give too ourselves, pampering our body, easing down our minds, or even catching up with family and friends can really help us to make a good use of our downtime. Being alone for sometime can helps us to explore and have a self realization of what makes us happy in life, what we truly want from our lives, our true spirits and strong determinations towards achieving something we are desiring for so long!
    As you mentioned “Awareness is the first step”. Acknowledging what is good for us, understanding the bad impacts of excessive screen time and prioritizing our lives is the way to make our lives better!

    Thank you, Great post!
    Regards

    Liked by 7 people

    • ‘Contrary to this, little moments of solitude, and that me-time we will give too ourselves, pampering our body, easing down our minds, or even catching up with family and friends can really help us to make a good use of our downtime.’ I second and relate. The me-time can be therapeutic 🙂

      Liked by 4 people

  8. ‘We must be grateful and appreciate what we have and not focus on what we lack.’ This summarizes everything. We keep wanting things that everybody has, focusing on all that others have and not appreciating all that we have, never counting our blessings 🙂 If only we stopped we’d realize we are happier in all that we have. Thank you for this post 🙂

    Liked by 5 people

  9. Ranjita says:

    Actually whenever I get on the Facebook in my free time I do get this feeling that I am wasting time and that by the time I am surfing on the internet many people are enjoying there lives in greater ways and that I must push myself up and that I am not a hard working individual….or that I am a coward that I am not following my passion of writing in more productive ways..
    But the reality is I am enjoying my imperfect life and that I think social media naturally instills in me a feeling that I am not giving in my cent percent….

    Liked by 6 people

  10. I do sometimes find myself feeling envious of others on Facebook and it just leaves me feeling hollow. It can also be a massive waste of time when there’s more productive things that I could be doing with my time like writing. I find taking time out from social media allows me to focus on myself and my own expectations.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts. It’s wonderful that you can acknowledge the affect Facebook has on your life and take the necessary steps to minimize the adverse impact. Taking breaks from social media is a great way to refocus on what is really important✨

      Liked by 1 person

  11. “Unanchored to anything real we float from one distraction to another looking for the next thing to anchor ourselves.”

    This is a great observation and sadly, quite true.

    Liked by 4 people

  12. Great post. I don’t suffer from FOMO, but rather get excited to see others’ lives and experiences. However, I have seen where the pictures others post don’t truly reflect their true life (ie, happy family pictures in a troubled marriage and the life) and it breaks my heart. Great words to reflect and keep us grounded in truly enjoying the world around us!

    Liked by 5 people

  13. Great post! I have often written about the result of spending too much time on line. I hadn’t thought of it from this perspective. As a nurse, I have worried about generations who are unable to tolerate silence and time to think. This is just another way that electronics can have damaging effects.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Thank you! Having time to reflect and think is a necessity for myself. It’s a great way to recharge and stay connected to myself✨

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Thank you for this post.
    ”Stay connected to your own existence and accept where you are currently in life.” *turns into a mantra
    I’m currently retired from social media. Laughs
    I’ve identified that I just don’t feel good utilizing it and that’s okay. My experiences with social media in the past couple of years have made me appreciate real-time /real-life connections in a deeper way. They have also made me appreciate my connection with myself differently. I’ve had to be honest about who I believe I am and how I see myself.
    Again thank you for this post ( & all of them really). Very Affirming.

    Liked by 6 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Thank you! I’m happy you enjoyed it! Indeed many find more meaning in JOMO the joy of missing out✨

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Kelly says:

    Funny I had to Google FOMO earlier this week. I didn’t know what it meant, thankfully. However, I’ve found myself lost in a sea of information many times…Apple’s introduction of screen time statistics was both scary & useful. Now, I have to make a conscious effort to time box activities including moments of solitude, sadly, as you noted, they don’t come naturally anymore with traits of ADHD getting in the way.

    I do spend a fair amount of time reading though when I can squeeze it in, and I’ve been enjoying your articles and posts, so keep up the good work! Thanks 🤓

    Liked by 5 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts Kelly. The screen time statistics are a great way to gauge how much time one is spending disconnected from the real world. Have a great day✨

      Liked by 2 people

  16. sandymancan says:

    It’s not the shine of things that make life worth living it’s the exchange of the tender touch in giving, shared appreciation with others gives life meaning. Never once will you recall a memory with warmth about a new car or house whatever it cost objects will get lost. Change your world by changing another life while improving your own then do it twice.

    Liked by 4 people

  17. Tattoos Kids And Yoga says:

    Great observations. I have suffered from this myself; thinking I had to be doing something each and every Friday, just because I knew there were things to do.
    Oddly enough, I know more people who do not use social media that have terrible FOMO.

    Liked by 4 people

  18. Salman Wani says:

    Sir, it is a great post rather I will say a kind service to all the people who are following you. Really, people today are giving value to these dead boxes in their hand instead of real people around them. It is leading to the greatest disinterest and dissatisfaction in one’s own life and the surrounding society ever witnessed before.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Well said and excellent point. As you point out, cell phones, “dead boxes” should not be the focus of our lives✨

      Liked by 2 people

  19. FOMO not a problem of mine nevertheless, thank you for this reminder about the ‘realities’ of social media and the internet. Real shame so many get caught up.

    Liked by 3 people

  20. Wole Adeoye says:

    Great post. Took me some time to realize that a lot of the people on social media with huge number of followers were actually not saying or doing anything worthwhile, just sharing good pictures that mislead. So I chose to focus on the work I do both in the real world and on the Internet and let those who believe in my work, and whose lives I’ve impacted, follow me at the right time. That has been so liberating and fulfilling. Also got me focused on what’s important.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Thank you! Also, a lot of the large accounts on social media, like Instagram, buy “fake” followers. A lot of social media is just an illusion✨

      Liked by 2 people

  21. Nadine says:

    Beautifully written. And timely, for me; thanks for sharing. I’m having a hard time finding balance. Think I’m addicted to social media (including WordPress lol). Also I’m an absolute twit at social which gives me even more anxiety over it. Yet I love to take photos and I love to make art and I love to share things with the world, and I love to read/see other people’s sharings with the world, and I love people (even though they scare me sometimes). And I love to see what they’re doing and how they live/create. So yeah. #stillfiguringstuffout

    Liked by 3 people

  22. I couldn’t agree more. In the past, ads pitted family against family and living up to the Joneses and having what they have or better. I see the same thing happening here but with more deleterious effects. Especially on the younger generations. I used to sit and watch tv with my kids, a must in my house. I wanted to know what they were being exposed to and would question their thoughts on what the possible outcome or moral of the story might be. In today’s society, young people (and I’ve heard of children as young as 4 being given phones and tablets for hours on end) are being bombarded by the very things your speaking about. If teens and adults have a difficult time withstanding that kind of bombardment and pressure, what of little ones who cannot differentiate and or make sense of what they are seeing? Hopefully, there is someone in their life responsible and caring enough to ask questions, find out where their mind and heart are at, what they believe in if it makes sense if it’s real! Loved this!

    Liked by 4 people

  23. It is like it’s MEANT for me to read this, I have not been on wordpress for a while til yesterday or the other day – I was just thinking to have the no phone challenge this weekend I have already confirmed my plans with a friend for tomorrow, i see no reason why i must have myphone and i have been leaving my phone in my car this week at work, and i had that FOMO and anxiety to check it later on. I had that issue when i left facebook back in July. my 3 year old is addicted to phones, but its so simulating for him, while sometimes it is so wrong of me to do so, but i give it to him as the LAST resort if i am in public – such as dr appointments or when its just so hard, but we do limit his use on it – we aim for fred myers because they have a play land place.

    Liked by 4 people

  24. This is a really wonderful post and very timely as well. I find the weeks after Christmas somewhat depressing. after all the activity and joyous celebrations suddenly everything comes to a full stop and it doesn’t have to! Mind you, I need the rest too – preparations for the holidays can be so exhausting. Having said that, I think one of the reasons Christmas has always been my favourite time of year is because of the extra effort to be with family and friends, to make time for these important relationships. Yes, social media, and Facebook in particular can be nothing more than a popularity contest with people posting everything from pics of their new car, home, vacation, to whatever new restaurant they’ve just tried. I don’t think it affects me overly much (but maybe I’m in denial? LOL).

    I tend to isolate myself and it’s a real challenge to engage with people. My job helps a lot because I work with the public, giving me ample opportunities to socialize – but it’s a surface thing. After all I would not call these brief interactions any kind of meaningful relationship. Yet, they do fill a partial need to belong; to be needed. Social media helps me stay connected to friends and family. On the other hand, solitude is something as necessary to my mental well-being as the air I breathe. Having said that, I think I have a bit of a different take on it growing up well before the advent of computers or social media. I still remember writing and receiving letters. (Yes, I’m THAT old haha!)

    Self reflections, prayer, a belief in something greater than I am keeps me grounded – for the most part. But I fear for the upcoming generations. Over Christmas my daughter’s boyfriend could not seem to put his phone down, and seemed annoyed when I asked him to. I am still getting to know him and simply wanted to learn more about his dreams, aspirations, what food he likes, etc. In short, I simply wanted to use the opportunity to get to know him better. Once I realized the depth of his shyness I realized his phone was his protection – his security blanket in a way – I backed off and chose to respect his right to not engage. I am hoping once he feels more secure and comfortable around us he won’t need to hide behind his cell phone. Some people are introverts and I try to respect that.

    I think we all have fears of missing out from time to time. I know I do, especially living far away from most of my siblings. I regret not having the opportunity to have a relationship with my little nieces and nephews and not being able to support family members when they are going through tough times; to be able to hug them when they’re sad. As for missing out on a bigger house, a newer car or gadget – those things don’t interest me because they are only things.

    I hope young people are able to withstand the minefield that is social media with their souls intact. I do not envy them the constant barrage of images and the incessant attacks by marketing teams that manipulate and prey upon their psyches.

    Thank you for sharing this very important post.

    Liked by 4 people

  25. Agree with you 100%. Social media has, in a way, taken over good old fashioned face to face interaction. People are becoming frighteningly reliant and influenced by what they see and read on social media platforms that’s it’s going to become or has already become a real problem.
    I only tend to use it when I’m not at work and when the family are out, otherwise I concentrate on real live social interactions. It’s worrying when you think about the influence it will have on our children and their children.

    Liked by 3 people

  26. simplymilesh says:

    Couldn’t agree more with this post! Very insightful and once you acknowledge the issue you begin to understand how much social media controls our very existence. I really enjoy the style of your writing too.

    Liked by 3 people

  27. There is a lot of truth in this post. I’ve had a bad habit of measuring my life against others especially through social media. It got even worse on Instagram being constantly bombarded by the carefully crafted and edited images of other people’s lives. But eventually a realized a lot of it was fiction or not telling the whole story. Part of it was my brain filling in holes in the story and creating envy. And then I felt like I had to validate my own life through posts. I didn’t feel great about myself. Eventually, I stopped using Instagram except to stop by occasionally and my mindset is a lot healthier. I just need to be me and not worry about what other people are doing.

    Liked by 3 people

  28. sobhanajm says:

    Such a great and timely post. FOMO is real and I think it can be a threat at so many levels and to so many important aspects of our life, most of all – peace of mind. Being aware in my opinion is the first big step and then simply saying no and deciding where we will put our time and energy. Thank you for this, Dr. Perry.

    Liked by 2 people

  29. Angelica says:

    I follow a lot of celebrities on Instagram and didn’t realize until reading this that I always wish I could be them. They are beautiful, wealthy, and very popular. I am none of these things. But I do like myself. Maybe not as much as I could because I am always comparing myself. Maybe they aren’t as happy as they look. We are all just people after all. Thank you for sharing your thoughts Dr. Perry. You are truly a gift to the world🙏🏼🌸

    Liked by 3 people

  30. This is such an important post. I have joined social media very late on as my husband/ex husband (mid divorce) didn’t want me to have it. So I have joined it when things are very much in full swing in terms of the way people package and present their lives (meaning they have gotten skilled at it). It has shocked me a little the intensity in which many post, the candid nature of a lot of it and it has surprised me also, the reaction it causes in me.

    I have been going through such a difficult time in my life and looking at other people’s happy lives, relationships and lifestyle creates a feeling of not jealousy, but inadequacy and failure (in me personally). It’s a feeling I really needn’t put myself through but I also can’t help but peek! It’s made me realise I need to limit myself and just use social media for its connectivity to family and friends but not to put myself in the competition as such. I do feel that no matter how wonderfully others lives are packaged, every life is filled with peaks and pits. Some are just better at pretending than others.

    Great post! 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

  31. Ray Davis says:

    I’ve definitely seen this phenomenon in action. I think it existed before social media. Many magazines – particularly women’s magazines – created the same fake world. I think the difference is the level of exposure. Maybe you read a couple of magazines that came out weekly or monthly. Now it’s right there for consuming 24/7.

    Plus it’s not just models and actresses and athletes displaying these perfect lives. It’s people we work with and went to school with. Maybe someone could accept they were never going to be Kim Basinger or Michael Jordan back in the day. Now we see people we always thought we’d outperform projecting the “perfect lives.”

    What’s crazy is it self-perpetuates as we respond by trying to top others or up our game at projecting a fake life. There’s a whole psychological potpourri around this topic.

    I write training professionally on my day job. I’ve seen this seeping into that world. People are easily bored by anything that doesn’t wow or entertain them. Our threshold for what can keep our attention has been set artificially high, I believe, partly because of FOMO. Great topic!

    Ray

    Liked by 3 people

  32. Great post. FOMO has played a role in my life, but long before social media. It was based in the fear of never being enough which was grounded in early childhood abandonment and rejection issues. If I could never be enough to keep those I loved in my life, what would ever be enough for me? My life was not enough, and sadly this attracted to me a lot of other people who never had, or felt, enough. Certainly, the objectification of women in media didn’t help. I never felt I was pretty enough, thin enough, talented enough … and on. When we are not enough on the inside we seek to fill the hole with the illusion on the outside. This never ends well.

    It’s a difficult pattern from which to break free, but it is possible with good help and self-awareness. Fortunately I’ve done enough personal work and am at the point where mostly if I “miss out” on something it’s because I know something even better is waiting in the wings. 😉

    Liked by 4 people

  33. This is a great post. Social media seems to have taken away from human to human interaction. We seem to be chasing the next perfect picture instead of enjoying the moment we are in. I have recently caught myself doing this. I put away the phone and enjoyed the time at the concert instead of watching it through my phone. Teaching yourself to me mindful is hard but a big step in the right direction.

    Liked by 3 people

  34. Hilary Tan says:

    Life is better without FakeBook. We can live without it. It’s not a necessity. Some people say FakeBook isn’t the problem and it’s how we use the platform but who can honestly say that they can use it in moderation? That their experiences aren’t negative? Not many. That’s why I suggest quitting it completely for a year. My mood has not changed much but I am often alone with my thoughts now and have time for creativity. When you do return to FakeBook or InstaBrag, you’ll realize that the amount of effort it takes to keep up with everyone is exhausting not to mention the content is super repetitive and may I add boring. My husband wastes boatloads of time on social media.

    sereneluna.wordpress.com

    Liked by 4 people

  35. beverlyeash says:

    Love this post! It mirrors my feelings exactly. I find that I avoid much of social media because I don’t like how it makes me feel at times. Great job putting into words what I feel in my heart!

    Liked by 4 people

  36. I had lunch with a friend today – we were talking about FOMO,and explained why I decided not to have my phone for the weekend, it was really weird not checking my phone the first thing in the morning, I don’t have social media anymore other than snap chat anyways. I need to get over the whole not having my phone on me 24 7 or even freak out if I cannot find it, today I had to clean out my car (way over due), and go meet a friend for lunch and my phone was in the car the whole time, I didn’t even open the place where it was held. now, I have no reason to go to my car tomorrow – so at 5 pm, I will check

    Liked by 4 people

  37. Jon says:

    Thank you for this post! Ironic that the FOMO can lead us to actually miss out on what is most important. I thought of the first part of Psalm 46:10 Be still and know that I am God… and who among us does not regularly see family members sitting at the same table in a restaurant, but emotionally off somewhere via their screens (surely, that is not us ;^))

    Liked by 3 people

  38. shweta1625 says:

    Fomo is a real issue for me. And I have noticed the more time I spend on social media, the more upset I start feeling because I don’t have a ‘perfect’ life. So now I am putting efforts into gradually disconnecting myself from social media.
    Also, listening to other people’s stories and their weekend adventures, makes me feel like I’m missing out on fun in my life.

    Liked by 4 people

  39. Great post! An major irony, if one is sitting at home in front of one’s computer looking at what everyone else is saying that they are doing, then that person is missing out on having a wonderful time doing something (anything) else. Comparing ourselves to others is really not a measure of anything 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  40. Philip Abang says:

    Beautifully put as always Dr Perry. Thank you for sharing. I consider this raw truth and people who will disagree with all that you’ve stated are living in denial. That is their defence mechanism I suppose. What you’ve outlined reminds me of two quotes;

    “a wealth of information leads to a poverty of attention” _Dr Herbert Simon.

    “We tend to forget that happiness doesn’t come as a result of getting something we don’t have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have” Friedrich Koenig.

    Great sir, keep it coming.

    Many regards.

    Liked by 3 people

  41. Bryce Warden says:

    I’m so glad that I am 50 and had the gift of boredom as a young person. It caused me to get creative as a means to amuse myself. Other life lessons taught me not to believe what is portrayed in public, it doesn’t always match what is under the rug.Insightful post.

    Liked by 3 people

  42. Sarah says:

    FOMO can be a significant issue – for me it plays a huge part in staying up way too late most days. But it’s also caused financial trouble in the past.

    Though I’ve found social media to help break those habits – maybe it’s because of the people I spend time around, or maybe it’s the content I consume online, but I’m able to recognize pretty pictures as exactly that and nothing more.

    The hardest part is guiding my children to seeing the role different screens play in their life. Electronics are okay, as long as they aren’t a replacement for interaction, and as long as we can see how the ‘magic’ was made.

    Liked by 3 people

  43. SoSophia says:

    Great post. About a year ago I stopped all social media. I was becoming anxious trying to post something cool and different every day. I finally realized what a waste of time it was! I am so much happier I interacting with real people.

    Liked by 3 people

  44. James P. says:

    Thankfully I am from an older generation that did not have machines that suck up time. While I am thankful for cell phones I am happy I did not have one as a child. The present generation is growing up disconnected and full of anxiety. Thank you for this great post.

    Liked by 3 people

  45. E says:

    Great post! I deleted my Facebook account almost a year ago and, though it was initially SO hard to break the habit, I am so very, very glad that I am no longer aimlessly swiping through my feed and experiencing the FOMO. I used to think about posting pictures of what my family was doing right away and didn’t even realize all of what I was missing out on by living behind the camera screen. Being *present* means I am missing out on so much less. It’s so great to take a vacation and, gasp, no one really even knows!!! But we get to be authentically ourselves—and that is so much more empowering.

    I also felt that the political divisiveness that I was seeing each day on FB made me so depressed and hopeless. People who I loved and cared for were so much more open and in your face about their opinions. They fought and, frankly, we’re pretty unkind from behind their screen. It made me sad and mad—so much energy that could have been spent elsewhere!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Well said. Often times we don’t realize how much of life we are missing out on while we are worrying about what to post on social media. I agree with you that people tend to be less kind when they have the buffet of a screen. Thank you so much for your comment✨

      Liked by 2 people

  46. Agreed! Focus on what you do have and not what you don’t have. I had a health scare a few years ago. This is when it all set in for me. I was thankful for the blessings I had.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. A health scare will always remind us of what is important in life✨

      Liked by 1 person

  47. Louise says:

    like every one here I am of an older generation so I am not scared of missing out. I, at times, do miss certain things – great steak meal someone to to eat it with, designer dresses etc holidays – but i just adjust and find other ways of filling those holes. I always liked to cook so I discovered vegetarian food; equally nutritious better for me, go on day trips to small country towns – which helps generate income and might save a job or two.
    I use my local libraries more often. I walk instead of the costly gym. Occasionally post pics on instagram but don’t really care.
    it is all about balance and anyway who really wants to look like the dreadful kardashian women??? I like my spots, imperfect skin tone, and half chewed nails.
    Thanks for the thoughts.

    Liked by 3 people

  48. Thank you Dr Perry. It’s a blessing and a curse – this social media, giving us so many opportunities but so easily sucking us into dissatisfaction. Yes, to recognize how it makes us feel and take time out if necessary. Ok I think it’s necessarily for me now. Ciao!

    Liked by 3 people

  49. thisis25site says:

    I absolutely loved this post! I shared it on my social media and got a lot of positive feed back, so I wanted to share that with you! Thank you for the great reminder and great read!

    Liked by 3 people

  50. Thank you for reminding me of this! I feel like I know that I need these moments of self-reflection, meditation, and just basically really logging OFF for once, just to enjoy my own thoughts and not all the distractions the internet keeps feeding me. But yeah, as one can see, it really got us hooked. Also, it dawned on me how indeed with the internet and social media, I seem to be aware of so many other things I tell myself subconsciously “miss” out on. Like how my Norwegian friend gets so much money from the state that she can actually explore her creative life as I am stuck with a 9 to 5 job just to make it through the day and after that 40 hour work week can finally spend some time exploring my life. Or, how my Scottish friend is surrounded with such nature as though it should come effortlessly. Here in crowded Belgium, I could only wish for such things. And in a sense, I now see it as FOMO, but even of things, I wouldn’t be aware of hadn’t people, so different from my own, not shown me. It’s like my imagination became much bigger, and the opportunities seem to lay only some countries away. Having not that situation my friends got going for themselves -since it appears so close- feels now as if I brought this down on myself, or at least I could have done something about it, and for as long as I am not in that desired state, I condemn myself a failure for not even trying. Pressure to succeed runs high… So thank you for reminding me where this pressure is coming from. It helps in dealing with it.

    Liked by 3 people

  51. Great post! I’ve made it a goal to start meditating more and tuning out some of the constant noise around me. I don’t use the radio anymore when I’m in my car and I’ve made a conscious effort to decrease social media. I definitely feel more at peace.

    Liked by 4 people

  52. janetsm says:

    I was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome in 1987 at the age of 34. It robbed me of my career, much of my feelings of self worth, my savings, my condo, and much of my ability to form memories. I could have wallowed in self pity and asked, “Why me?” but that was not how I chose to deal with the hand I’d been dealt. When I know what my contemporaries are doing — especially in the age of social media — to be envious, but I’ve tried not to react that way.

    I’ve had a good life and wouldn’t trade it for anyone else’s I know. My illness has allowed me to discover interests that I might not have figured out about myself if I had continued to work 60 hours-a-week as I did in my healthy days. My energy is very limited, so it’s not like I have 24 hours-a-day to do as I wish. Most days the desire to work on a hobby or the novel I’m writing is there, but the energy just isn’t there to allow me to carry out those activities. That’s when I do what I can and try to live by the sage advice of my late mother: Take one day at a time.

    My contemporaries are enjoying their first taste of retirement and traveling, going to concerts, and dancing — all things I don’t have the energy to do. It would be easy for me to feel sorry for myself for missing out on those activities; however, I try to dwell on the positive things my “disability” has afforded me. I make a conscious effort to be content. That’s gotten easier after 32 years of experience.

    Liked by 3 people

  53. JungRules says:

    Wonderful post Dr. Perry. It gives me a lot to think about. Also, thank you for all you do for FREE! I don’t know how you manage to write as well as have a practice. Beautiful blog ❤️

    Liked by 3 people

  54. Very well said. Social media has indeed impacted our lives so much so that many of us have become “addicted” to it. I hate it most when people cannot seem to detach themselves even for a few minutes during meal time. The danger of being so attached to social media is that it alienates us from the persons next to us while we strive to get connected with the person on the other side of the line.

    Liked by 3 people

  55. Eva says:

    Once again great blog post Dr Perry. Like the many others that I’ve read, I enjoyed this one as well.

    It was only after reading this did I know/ learn of the meaning of FOMO.

    I think our current society has this tendency to build up a lot of expectations with regards to how we should be living our lives. Social media too contributes a lot to the dissatisfaction we are currently feeling since it sugar coats a lot of things.

    I’ve read that one famous celebrity(sorry I forgot who specifically that was) took a social media break and is now quite feeling refreshed.

    Having been born in an era where so social media wasn’t the way of life, I can clearly compare what has been. And I miss that great era.

    The way I see myself has greatly changed because of social media and I fear that It would continue to deteriorate with continued use.

    Thank you for this enlightenment. I really enjoyed this. Or did I say that already?😊

    Liked by 2 people

  56. Ana P. Rose says:

    This is a great insight. A few months ago, I met with a friend. I noticed that she’s always out with friends at baseball a d basketball games. She posts about her outings etc. She also posts a lot about her business. She looks like she’s in a good place. I’m not one to feel anxious or depressed about social media. But I do notice the pics I scroll about. When we met, she unloaded her life pretty on me. I hadn’t seen her in years. I won’t go into details about her privacy. But I was in utter shock. She was a complete portrait of what she is on social media. It made me wonder how different I am between the “Real me” and the “social me.” What do others see in me? That part, I did get anxious about. Thanks for this great post. Made me realize many things about social media and the like. 🌹

    Liked by 3 people

  57. Great post! I agree with everything you said, I myself struggle with comparing my life to other people lives and it’s really taken a toll on my mental health. So recently I got rid of all my social media apps- except this one. It is important that I take moment to my self and reflect. Thank you for this reassurance.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      You’re welcome! I’m happy you like it and thank you for sharing your thoughts✨

      Liked by 1 person

  58. Jeff says:

    I echo all of the “great post” comments! The “fear of missing out” can be crippling. It’s the thing that causes us to constantly be checking our phones to see what the latest Facebook post is, or to see if someone commented on mine. There are certainly days that I feel the need to avoid it. A lot of those times are more from frustration over the overtly political posts, though. Social media really seems to have a stranglehold on our society, though. At times, it’s almost frightening to think where it’s going to lead us.

    Liked by 1 person

  59. thelongview says:

    I don’t have FOMO, but I see it all around me, and that makes me wonder if I’m lacking in zest for life! A quiet day with some meaningful work, being outdoors, some time with family and friends including animals, and some alone time as well – that’s all I want!!

    Liked by 1 person

  60. I would say early on when I joined Facebook I definitely had a bad case of FOMO. I probably spent two years thinking I’m just not living my best life. Than in my spirit there was a strong feeling to look at my time line! There were the days I loved most and a couple of bad ones but I controlled what I allowed people to see. Was it my whole truth and did others really need to know? My personal epiphany others had the same freedom to paint their image as they saw fit. Comparing my story to their filtered story was pointless! I’m glad I went through it though, I have some wisdom to share with my teen daughters as they enter the world of Social Media.

    Liked by 2 people

  61. Susiewoo says:

    I’ve found that I’m much happier wanting all that I have instead of having all I may think I want. Contentment really is vastly under-rated 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  62. DorothyMarie says:

    To be honest, I used to struggle with comparing myself and my life to that of others that I saw. I hated that I did it too. It took me awhile, but I broke myself from it. I realized that much of what is posted on the social networks is all the good and happy and that even the most perfect of families have things going on and aren’t perfect! I’m so much better now that I’ve stopped comparing and have accepted my own life’s blessings! Great post!

    Liked by 2 people

  63. Sad that our society has come to this but at least you’ve created the awareness of what reality truly is and how to return to our compass. Thankfully, I am not of the techie genre, not dictated by acquiring stuff, and take time to see the numerous gifts already around me. Whatever fantastic photos I see, I simply appreciate the creativity in making art vs a life or something I need to obtain.

    Liked by 1 person

  64. doubledacres says:

    Spot on. I myself just left FB because I felt it was starting to control my time. I did this on 12/22 and I am not sorry I did. I am reading more, writing more and best of all my journal isn’t being neglected anymore. So many people need to read this. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Thank you for reading. It’s amazing how much we can accomplish and enjoy if we take a step back from social media✨

      Liked by 2 people

  65. Andy says:

    Great insight! As the hippies of the 60’s discovered, it’s not enough to see the light and everything will be ok, unintegrated emotional charge keeps us from staying present and draws us like a magnet to the myriad of distractions. As taking acid every day is illegal, impractical and regular use produces diminishing returns we need a more sustainable way of integrating our fragmented energies – that’s where meditation for me steps in. It gives me the stillness to turn and face my demons, my uncomfortable feelings and when I look them in the eye, I realise they are in fact my own children, wanting to come back home. I’m not free from all suffering but I’m beginning to realise more and more that the only path to sustained presence is to integrate enabling my blocked emotions to flow freely again (energy in motion). I use Michael Brown’s ‘The Presence Process’, for me it’s so powerful, the best of the best!

    Liked by 2 people

  66. Joseph says:

    I enjoy social media, guilty, but I mostly use it to check on friends and relatives, how they pretend to be doing. Also, I snatch ideas of what I find pleasing, incorporating it in my life if I can, or work towards it. It’s motivational.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Enjoying social media is fine as long as it does not have a detrimental effect on your life. FOMO is a result of spending so much time on social media that you forget it’s mostly a male believe world. Thank you for reading and commenting✨

      Liked by 2 people

  67. Ladysag77 says:

    I write about and can relate to this post very much. I feel technology has definitely contributed to the ruination of the human condition. Being able to sit, reflect and connect with others on a human level, a deeper more personal level. So much is superficial and shallow, just on the surface. I have a love/hate relationship with social media. I pride myself on living authentically and my blog, social media accounts and my personal life in general reflect that attitude. I also especially love how important emotional cues are. Sitting and noticing our emotions are uniquely human and so crucial. My blog is all about how to navigate this world as an emotional being. As a physical and emotional empath, I feel it’s part of my purpose to help heal others from their emotional afflictions and pain. I love being able to connect and inspire others by sharing my life experiences. Your blog is so uplifting and wonderfully written and informative. Thank you Dr. Perry!!

    Liked by 2 people

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