7 Ways to Balance Sleep and FOMO

Social anxiety is a bona fide concern when so much seems to happen around campus 24/7, and with it comes the fear of missing out. Not only a drain on mental health, FOMO can take a toll on the body when it interferes with sleep. In the face of these two concerns, you can still be a well-rested, badass bitch if you ditch (some) social expectations and adopt a self-care attitude.

1. Keep a planner

Advice you’ve probably heard: write things down. A planner is a physical representation of your mental calendar. Fill it with all your musts and maybes to keep yourself oriented. Knowing what days you’ll be busy helps you not only get ahead on work and curb procrastination, but allows you to fill emptier days with lunch dates and girls’ night out plans.

2. Choose ‘cheat’ days

Sleep is equally important as nutrition. In both, cheat days can be useful to offset an otherwise strict regiment and allow some time for mental recovery. After every long week of exams or committed studying session it’s important to give yourself a break. Maybe Saturdays you stay up a little later, then get a sound eleven hours Sunday morning. Self care y’all.

3. Make a flexible sleep schedule

If getting enough snooze is a big stressor, it’s easy to become frustrated when your sleep goal is not being met. Although the National Sleep Foundation suggests healthy adults average seven to nine hours, not all of your sleep needs to occur at night. Utilize naps on days you fall short and get extra sleep on days with less of a time crunch. Aim for a consistent amount of sleep over a couple of days rather than an exact numerical value in every twenty-four hours.

4. Take initiative

You could wait to be invited to events at inconvenient times or, alternatively, could take part in the planning process. Everyone else caters to themselves firstly so if you’re not the one inviting, then you’re likely at the mercy of a schedule that is in no way similar to your own. This could mean rushing to arrive or leaving early to take care of your own needs. Never feel like you have to do it all, but know that you have the power to create the social life that suits you best.  

5. Listen to your body

If you remember only one thing, it’s that you know yourself better than anyone else. Just because your roommate can pull two all-nighters in a row and still want Ike’s at one AM, doesn’t mean you’re required to do the same. If you’re midway through an event and the inertia slows down, maybe it’s time to call it a night. Get to bed; be shameless and unapologetic.

6. Be selective

It’s not selfish to prioritize a well-rested you over watching the same movie for the fourth time, especially if you’re not energized by the group that is hosting. It’s okay to enjoy time with some of your floormates or social groups more than with others. You know what and who makes your late nights worth the hangover. Say no to anything that feels half-hearted.

7. Double up

Feeling overwhelmed with commitments, errands, or academics? Look for activities you can combine with socialization. A busy day doesn’t have to mean cutting out time with your favorite people. Talk on your way to pick up mail, grab a bite, nap, or sit together and study. Real friendship is there in the ordinary, and you’ll be able to sleep more!

Sleep is THE BEST. Take care of yourself, be a true socialite, and get those hours, boo.