Tuesday, April 8, 2014

FOMO & Me: The Story of How I Decided To Start Enjoying My Life

Look at us Millennials and our stupid abbreviations. First it was YOLO, now it's FOMO. And I'm super guilty of perpetuating that 20-something stereotype. I've caught myself suffering from FOMO on more than one occasion and I've also been that asshole who says YOLO (only ironically, I swear). 

Wait, before I continue maybe I should actually explain. FOMO stands for: Fear of Missing Out. 

Now, I suffer from FOMO in a broader sense. Not the fear of missing out on the stupid weekend shenans that people get up to while I'm consciously choosing wine & Netflix over a night out. No. My fear consists of the fear that I will never experience the world the way I always dreamed I would. And it mostly flares up when someone I know is moving on to bigger and better things and it reminds me of how trapped I feel. 

A friend of mine just confided they will be leaving for Vancouver in the next few months and while I was beyond happy for them, I was also extremely jealous. It was so selfish of me but all I could think was "I'm going to miss you, but mostly, I'm upset because it's not me". You see, if you had asked me 6 years ago, when I was about to graduate from high school, where I saw myself right now, it was anywhere but here. I dreamed of New York, Toronto, Montreal, Portland, Seattle, Boston, Europe...
Here we are today and I'm just now moving out of my parents house. I'm still here. I'm not living  in a studio apartment in Brooklyn, or a condo in downtown Toronto, or on the coast in Seattle. I'm still here, middle of the prairies, feeling stuck. I complain, I cry, I suffer through the jealousy but mostly I'm so disappointed in myself for still being here. 

I've been trying to come to terms with this for a little while now but it was really a conversation I had with a friend over the weekend that snapped me back to reality. You see, I know this person who just seems so amped up on life that I can't even believe it's real sometimes. I have asked on more than one occasion if they're on something and where I can find it. I'm talking a true lover of life and someone who ends almost every text with exclamation points. It really confused me until this:

"I'm always excited; only good days or great days!! It's a general realization that life is fun and friends are key."

And that my friends, is when it really did click. I have a great life. Even my bad days are still good when I put it into perspective. What do I have to complain about? I can continue to work towards my dreams and goals with an amazing support system. I'm about to embark an a brand new adventure with Anna. I'm traveling this summer. I can still continue to apply for jobs out of the province while I do all of this. Life is great. So what's the rush?

I will get where I need to be when I need to be there. Right now, I'm meant to be here, living my life and enjoying it. I need to stop being afraid I'm missing out on my life, and start living it. Wherever it may be.

I'm not missing anything.  


  1. love this. i have this fear of missing out on the bigger picture all the time!!!

  2. Wonderful! I think we all need this reminder. I have big picture FOMO all the time, too. I live in one of the cities you mentioned and constantly want to get out -- but the grass is always greener, as they say. Also, please note that you will never live in a studio in Brooklyn unless you make approximately 1 million dollars so just throw that dream right away. Other than that, you / we are so young! So many good things to come.

  3. the way i see it, YOU make your dreams happen. we control our destiny!

    (ps - "you" = general you, not YOU you. well, yeah, and you!)

  4. Holy crap girlfriend, this was wonderful. I want to give you a huge internet hug <3 how can I do that?

    I'm always having FOMO - like sometimes I'm in the wrong place at the wrong time and it's all because I either live life grabbing it by the horns or I sit back and observe... all depending on which way the wind is blowing. You're exactly where you're supposed to be and I'm so happy you realize <3

  5. This is such a great post! Also life is truly what you make it. Find the good in every situation, every location and ever stage of life!

  6. I have this same problem. I'm still in school, living at home, trying to figure out how to pay for school AND afford to move out all while still working. My friends have all pretty much moved on to other cities (NYC, Washington D.C., and Tampa, FL. to name a few!) and while I am so happy for them, I can't help but be jealous. I should be doing that.... but I'm still here.

    I am also working on making the best of it but I definitely know where you are coming from!

  7. I totally get your stance on this... It's exactly how I feel! I don't care if I miss a night out at the bar... but when everyone is getting married, having babies, discovering their career - milestones - it gets to me.

  8. I'm in the same boat, but I think many of us are. Every time someone asks if I want to go somewhere the answer is always yes. Then I have to figure out how to make it happen.

  9. very well said - completely agree and think i needed to see this today :)