How To Deal With FOMO In Your First Weeks of College

Since I have gone to college, I realized I have may have developed a sickness. I know what you’re thinking, and no, it's not COVID. But, I think it's something that is common in a lot of college students. That something is called fear of missing out, aka, FOMO.

I have found myself using FOMO as an excuse to go out with friends, when it feels like I still have a boatload of assignments to do. I use it when I know I have a 9:30 a.m. class the next day, but still want to stay up talking to my roommates until 2 in the morning. Especially after feeling like we were stuck at home forever due to the pandemic, it's hard to say no to hanging out with new and interesting people, even when away from the world of university. As I learn to combat FOMO, here are some tips that have helped me balance out my social life and my schoolwork.


1. Get Your Work Done Early

This one may sound obvious, but I have started to get my homework and asynchronous lectures done as early as possible. It is so much more fun to go out when you know nothing is sitting on your desk in your dorm just waiting to be finished. I’m going to be honest: I definitely still sometimes procrastinate and do assignments last minute, but this strategy has helped me a lot. 


2. Learn to Say No

Another thing that I am now learning how to do is say no. As the quiet, introverted girl in high school who had a small circle of friends, I usually didn't have to say no to social situations. Since I have arrived at college, I discovered a more extroverted side of myself that I never knew I had. I also have many friends who live right in my dorm, so it's so much easier to just casually hang out last minute.

At first, I never said no to social plans, leading to me falling behind in my schoolwork. This led to me realizing that I am here to learn and do well in my classes. I think what works best is to remember your goals and why you are really here at school. For me, becoming a Public Health major, so I can later become a doctor and help others. 


3. Meditate When You Can

Another problem I have faced is seeing people having fun on Snapchat or Instagram, then feeling that awful anxiety. And that's exactly what FOMO is, the fear that comes when you feel like you are missing out. One method I have found to be helpful for these moments is mediation. I have found the apps “Calm” and “Headspace” to be useful when I feel overwhelmed about not being invited or isolated from people. Often, college students don’t take time for their mental health, but it is essential to make time for yourself when you feel anxious and stressed. 


Overall, it's important to remember that college is a time of meeting new people and having new experiences, while also learning how to be responsible. I hope some of these strategies help deal with your newfound college FOMO.