JOMO: ‘Joy of Missing Out’ is the opposite to the commonly used term FOMO:
‘Fear of Missing Out’.
Are you someone who’s at every party, every social occasion, every event, because you just *have* to be there – and you can’t bear the thought of missing out or not being involved?
Missing out on the people, the parties, the conversations, the Facebook photos?
I used to be like that, until I discovered how beautiful JOMO was.
Allow me to explain what happened last week for me.
I decided around Wednesday-ish, that I really just wanted to stay in this weekend and have time to myself. Early nights, journalling, writing my book, making my personal space beautiful, giving my body some TLC and yoga, and setting goals for the week ahead.
I asked myself – how do I want to feel this weekend? And the truth was – calm, at ease, on top of things. Sober. Not covered in blood. Etc.
But it also happened to be Halloween weekend, which as we know, only happens once a year, etc – and I had 3 party invites – 2 of which I had already sort of committed to.
And so this pressure to be ‘out’ and in full fancy dress form had manifested and made me feel obliged to get involved, get a costume sorted and go.
I had half a mermaid costume sat at home (don’t we all?!) – but I realised that actually – mermaids don’t ever go out of style. I can be a mermaid next Halloween, or every Halloween for the rest of my years. (Or in fact every day if I wanted to, because #mermaidlife.).
I asked myself ‘Would it feel like a relief, to not actually have to go to any of them, and stay in instead?’ – and the answer was a resounding ‘….yes.’
I asked myself and my body: ‘What do you really need right now?’ – the answer was to spend more time looking after myself and ‘catching up’ with me.
I decided in that moment that I just wasn’t up for it, and I’d rather skip this weekend’s parties. After all, Halloween would still be there next year, and the year after that, and for every year for the rest of my life.
Don’t get me wrong – I’m a busy person but I’m generally not a flaky friend – plus I love an excuse for fancy dress – and there was a huge part of me that wanted to get dressed up, cover myself in blood, wear those crazy contact lenses, party with my friends all night, pose for a trillion photos, and get back in the early hours of the morning.
BUT – I knew that by agreeing to this, I would also be agreeing to feeling exhausted the next day, burnt out and run down, and then feeling disorganised and more behind with myself on Monday morning. And I just wasn’t down for that.
My body and I have a great little relationship now, so we communicate a lot.
And my body was saying loud and clear – NO.
So I let my FOMO slide – and accepted the fact that I wouldn’t be catching up with everyone, wouldn’t be able to engage in conversations about ‘what happened at the party’, and wouldn’t be in the fun photos that appeared online the next day.
And I decided that actually – I was more than Ok with that.
Instead, here’s what I did over Halloween weekend:
Went to a yoga class
Went to a CrossFit class
Got 5 extra hours of writing under my belt (that’s around 15,000 more words for the book)
Decluttered, cleaned out and organised my kitchen cupboards.
Organised all my spices and grains and seeds into cute little jars (and then post about it)
Caught up with sleep, emails, laundry and admin.
Started reading a new book.
Organised a million different notes I had all over the place.
Made my flat feel beautiful, then lit incense sticks and candles.
Made a huge batch of my Gorgeous Granola, which made my whole home smell amazing.
Caught up with one of my best friends at dinner and had a good old natter (she wasn’t feeling it this year either)
Did you know that the word ‘No’ is a super powerful tool?
I really recommend using it more often.
If you really don’t want to go then guess what?
You don’t actually have to go at all.
You don’t even have to come up with an amazing excuse.
You can stay at home in your pyjamas and paint your nails and get an early night.
Isn’t that such a relief?
There will always be more parties, more networking events, more dinners. These will never go away.
The people you ‘need’ to catch up with – will still be there next week, the week after, or the month after. I mean, unless they’re about to emigrate to a different continent, in which case you should probably prioritise catching up with them, but you get my drift.
There will never be a day when you sit down and think “You know, I think I’m all caught up with everyone I needed to catch up with! I can now relax!” No. That day simply does not exist.
I’m not asking you to be a flaky friend and always be letting people down.
I’m asking you to stop letting yourself down by saying yes to everything only because of your FOMO.
I’m asking you, as always!!! To get real clear on how you want to feel.
And sometimes that means saying no to the party, just in favour of staying in, getting an early night, and reflecting calmly on your life, your thoughts, and where you want to be.
The truth is, your real true friends will understand when you need time to yourself, and will appreciate you putting that first.
‘Nobody really cares if you don’t go to the party’ – Courtney Barnett
True say, Courtney. True. Say
I always encourage my Goddesses to take themselves on regular dates alone. Show up somewhere alone. Book yourself in to a workshop or event, alone. Heaven forbid – go out for dinner alone, or go to the cinemas alone!
It’s not embarrassing – it’s empowering.
Solitude is very different thing from loneliness.
It’s ok to spend time alone. You can actually develop a new found appreciation for time spent in solitude. Time alone is time spent getting to know yourself. It’s your time to chill out, catch up on rest, and ask yourself what you really want.
If you can truly let go of your need to be ‘involved’ all the time, it’s so rewarding for the soul.
To take a break from constant connectivity – to instead be connected just with yourself and your thoughts.
It truly does give you a strong sense of contentment to be able to say no rather than always be the person saying yes.
So my message here is this:
You don’t need to go to every event.
You don’t need to be at every party.
You don’t need to catch up with every friend that week.
Prioritise the time it takes to recharge your batteries when your body needs to.
Place your FOMO aside, and embrace your JOMO sometimes, instead.
Create a calm space for reflection and actually prioritising what is important to you right now.
You won’t lose friends, you won’t miss out, there will be more invites.
Of course – if you really want to go – then GO!
But saying yes to all the invites means you’re constantly saying no to you.
Say yes to yourself and what you really want, more often.
When you Say No to the things you don’t want to do, you are saying YES to yourself and living in your truth.
Be someone who embraces their JOMO, values their time and decides exactly where their energy should be spent.
And of course – when you value your time and energy more, other people will value it more too.
But you already knew that 😉