I saw this cartoon a few weeks ago in the New York Times called ‘The Amazing New Thing’ and it made me think of FOMO. An apparently recent sociological phenomenon standing for the ‘Fear Of Missing Out’, although you and I may know it as a variation of the old adage ‘the grass is always greener’. However this latest in a long line of acronyms got me thinking.
Are you afraid of what you’d actually miss out on or just the fantasy idea of missing out on something supposedly wonderful? And the idea that it would be a simple solution to solve all your problems and bring you everlasting happiness is just an added bonus? Or would it just make you look good in front of your peers?
There is also the idea that people want to or perhaps need to be up-to-date all the time to know the latest news as soon as it becomes public knowledge, or even better before. But in reality, how important is that? What would happen if you found out about the latest technology announcement such as the latest Apple product launch a few minutes, hours or days after the official announcement?
What’s more, the prevalence of social media and technology in our society is inevitably worsening the problem as the whole world online seems to be having a much better and more exciting life than our own.
If we felt happy and dare I say content with our own lives, would we fall for FOMO as easily? It starts with curiosity looking for ‘the answer’ and ends up almost being like some kind of addictive fantasy as you can neither see nor appreciate what you have here and now.
I’m a huge fan of experiencing new things and visiting new places, but my point here is that these things generously complement your life, however they are not the ‘answer’.
You will never be happy always looking for an answer in somewhere else or tomorrow.
Is the grass really always greener elsewhere? What’s stopping us making more of the grass we have wherever we are now? Surely, if you’re always looking for something ‘better’, it would never stop.
The clip below is an excellent example of always wanting more preventing you from enjoying the here and now. It’s from TV comedy ‘Frasier’ in which Frasier and his brother Niles have gained access to an exclusive health club. They have been through the Silver door and the Gold door levels of membership, but then they see the Platinum door…
How many life hacks do you really need to live the life you want to live?
How ‘right’ do you need your life to be?
Although we may want our lives to be ‘perfect’ or ‘better’, sometimes, perhaps we just need to live our lives.
Just a thought…
Here’s the complete Amazing New Thing cartoon.
12 thoughts on “The Amazing New Thing”
“What’s more, the prevalence of social media and technology in our society is inevitably worsening the problem as the whole world online seems to be having a much better and more exciting life than our own.” wow if that isn’t the truth, and there are studies that offer data in support of that.
I had to have someone explain FOMO to me the other day, how very Millennial that it’s become an acronym and how ironic that my fear of missing out on knowing the term forced me to seek out someone to define it for me. 😉
That’s amusingly ironic, isn’t it Kelli? Thanks for your comment.
I finally got this a few years ago when I realized my gravestone was going to say “She was so busy regretting the past and fearing the future that she never learned how to live in the here and now.” And the funny is, after dwelling on that for awhile, when they asked me what I wanted for my birthday last month, I couldn’t think of a thing. I have everything I need — apparently. That was something new.
I think we’re always learning and every now and then, we notice some progress. It’s a nice feeling to have everything you need and also to feel that too. Thanks for your comment.
I wrote about F.O.M.O yesterday too, guess we’re all feeling it somewhat!
LikeLiked by 1 person
There’s definitely something in the air. I think people are also starting to react against FOMO and the excesses of technology in search of a simpler and more minimal life.
LikeLiked by 2 people
Nice to now. Thanks for your comment.
What a wonderful post, through and through! Love the comic strip and the video. Beautiful job. Thank you.
Thank you for your kind words. Glad you like it.
Interesting thoughts. Thankfully I’ve never felt like someone on Facebook has a happier life than my own. I did, however, just deactivate my Twitter and FB accounts for at least the month of June, because I realized the instant gratification of social media, which allows me to post my every thought at any moment was greatly contributing to my writer’s block. Who needs fully formed writings when you can pontificate in 140 characters or less on Twitter?
Looks like you’ve found your own way forward. Thanks for your comment.