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Is FOMO the New YOLO?

 It’s important to remember that when your workload is massive (as it usually is around this time at DePauw), it’s okay to stay in on a Saturday night to get a head start on the week. But come Sunday afternoon as you’re perusing Facebook on your study break, you begin to feel panicky scrolling through the weekend’s photo uploads. This irrational but common anxiety is called FOMO: fear of missing out. FOMO has become a growing problem for modern women due to the popularity of social media and the increasing number of opportunities available to us. And given the size of our DePauw bubble, it’s no surprise that we are left asking ourselves “what might have been” at brunch time as names, fights, and hook-ups are dropped left and right. FOMO can eat away at your confidence and challenge your study habits. Here’s how to accept that you don’t have to be everywhere at once (even though DePauw has taught you how to be):

Get Off Facebook! Ignore Instagram!
Social media is a FOMO plague. Looking at picture of your friends at a frat and wondering if that could have been your new default will only fuel your insecurity. According to JWTIntelligence trend reports, 8 out of 10 people mainly use social media to brag about their lives. Unplug yourself from their bragging. Time can be spent in much more productive ways, such as a Spinning study break or catching up on the latest episode of Revenge online. If you don’t have this much self-control then download the app for your browser and put it to good use. Enjoy your information detox and relax in the few hours you have to yourself. Peace of mind is way better than a piece of juicy gossip.

Choose Wisely
When we try to do it all, we tend to succeed but only by half-ass’ing our way through it. Rather than spreading ourselves thin, make a decision; stick with it, and put 100% of your effort into it. The most successful people are the ones who devote themselves entirely to their project. They weigh their options and recognize the consequences. They may miss out on a Friday night every once in a while, but they don’t worry about it.

Boost Your Ego
Give yourself a pat on the back for having enough sense to miss out on what likely is just another average Fraturday. There will be more to come. If FOMO starts to creep in, drown it out with this compliment: it probably wasn’t that much fun without you. You know you’re a sociable HC girl with awesome dance moves. Tell yourself that your giggle was surely missed. Because the more confident you are about what you bring to the party, the more confident you’ll be about missing out. Take pride in knowing you could do-it-all, but you don’t have to. You aren’t any less cool because you skipped out on that tailgate. In fact, you’re suddenly a little more mysterious. Absence does make the heart grow fonder. Market the mystery.

We have enough to worry about here at DePauw. We don’t need anxiety and depression brought on by FOMO. Instead of a fear of missing out, we should fear going out too much. Excess partying leads to a weak immune system, bad grades, and possibly even a bad reputation. What’s the worst that could happen on a night-in? Too much beauty sleep?



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