Lovely lovely lovely LOVES! I hope everyone had the MOST lovely of 4ths celebrating with friends + family! I had a lovely day myself that was ever so CHILL + relaxing… a small group of us spent the day in Newport by a bay with a picnic + watched fireworks! It was perfect!
I actually surprised myself because versus going to a few 4th of July parties with tons of people, I opted to hangout with just a few close friends away from the crowds. I said no to many other options + chose to go with the most simple, low key 4th of July celebration [sans big party]. For an extroverted personality like me, this kind of “seclusion” sometimes can be shocking [even to myself].
That brings up the point of this post! Have you ever been invited to so many things you get overwhelmed? Have you ever found yourself struggling to say no with people because you GENUINELY want to spend time with them, yet you literally have NO HOURS in the day? Or do you ever just not want to miss out on something because you know people will be talking about it for months to come? This, friends, is the common fear of FOMO.
YES, FOMO IS A REAL THING. And, YES, I struggle with it OFTEN!
Although many of us are afraid to admit to it, FOMO can truly be a real struggle. Maybe some of you introverts are reading this + laughing because you love nothing more than staying home + missing social outings… BUT I know for me as an extrovert it can be SO DIFFICULT! #letsbereal! Who’s with me?!
About 2 years ago when I was living in NYC I struggled significantly with FOMO. Every night I was invited to do something new… + just about every invite was kind of amazing. Fashion parties, cocktail hours, birthdays, grand openings, girls nights… the list goes on. Yes, this may sound oh so FABULOUS, but when you are trucking all around NYC by foot it can quite exhausting. There were just SO many fun things to do, how ever could I choose?
By choosing to not fight the FOMO in NYC, I overcommitted myself constantly to activities…. I was constantly bumping around from activity to activity + rarely saw what my apartment looked like during the daytime. I was SO busy that I finally reached a BURNOUT. The solution to this awful burnout came in the form of moving to Los Angeles to experience a change in lifestyle. But since I made the huge decision to move to LA to truly change my pace of living, I knew that it was actually change my pattern of saying “yes” to everything.
So, I practiced really really REALLY hard at saying no to all the new fun LA activities [I am not joking, it was SUPER hard, guys!]. And to top it off, a friend introduced me to the book Boundaries by Henry Cloud which discusses ALL different ways to create boundaries in your life with friends, family, coworkers, work + play. It is simple advice, but also very very helpful to those of us who truly struggle with saying no + creating space for ourselves.
As soon as I actually started putting to practice fighting my FOMO tendencies, I began to see that I finally felt some freedom. It took a while, but I truly begin to realize that not being at every activity did not mean that people would forget about me. Indeed, I would still be invited to the next activity. It also did not mean that those people would be offended. People tend to understand if you are busy or need time to yourself to rest + recover.
You see, the core issue with FOMO is that we sometimes allow social invites to define who we are [at least partially].
Instagram + social media makes this problem especially worse + constantly perpetuates us into feeling more + more self conscious about our own lives in comparison to others. It can be an endless cycle unless we choose to recognize + call out the feelings we are having + choose to stop them.
All that being said, I want to encourage you that YOU ARE SO VALUABLE. Your rest. Your health. Your mental well being. Your time. Your energy. ALL of that is so important + so soooo very valuable.
If you are struggling with FOMO, it’s okay….you are not alone! But I do want you to know that there is so much freedom to be found by taking care of yourself + mentally choosing to accept that saying no is completely understandable + necessary for your well being.
Love you ALL.