Fighting FOMO

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Credit: Pixabay

If you haven’t been living under a rock for the past decade, you’ve probably heard of FOMO.  It’s a psychological quirk of humans that advertisers exploit to get us to buy ALL. THE. THINGS.

I mean, nobody wants to miss out on something cool, right?  Everyone wants the latest, greatest shiny.  How else can you assure yourself and everyone else that you’re cool and successful and beautiful?

I’ve never been one of those people.  Labels don’t matter to me, whether something works for me does.  Maybe it’s a side effect of growing up without much money.  My parents made sure my siblings and I always had what we needed, but there were lots of times when we didn’t get everything we wanted.

And guess what?  We survived.  I mean, sure, those fancy white Nikes with the red swoosh were awesome, but our Payless shoes did the job just as well.  Actually better, because once I could afford those white Nikes with my own money, I discovered the bright white didn’t last long and neither did the shoes.

Someone’s always trying to convince you that you need the latest this, that, or the other.  But I think people would be a lot happier if they would stop and think about what they actually need.  I mean, if you have unlimited funds and can buy whatever you want without worrying about the cost, then sure, avoid FOMO and buy all the things.

Unfortunately, I don’t know a lot of people (or any, really) who are in that situation.  Most of us only have a certain amount of money to spend on wants AND needs.  I want a new car, but I need water and electricity.  I want a new iPad Pro, but I need to pay tuition.  I want to travel to Europe, but I need a roof over my head.

I could let my FOMO rule my spending, but will I be any happier for doing so?  Probably not.  Don’t get me wrong, I certainly can fall victim to FOMO as easily as anyone.  Right now, my weakness is anything to do with planners.

Because I’m working on launching my sticker business, I’ve been trying out different things to see what I like, what works, and what doesn’t work for me.  So I currently have a basket full of stickers and other supplies I’ve purchased sitting around taking up space, because once I got them, I realized I either didn’t like them or they didn’t work for the way I plan.

I know that FOMO is hard to combat, but it can be done.  Honestly, you miss out on stuff every day.  There’s no way for everyone to experience/own everything.  And that’s OK.  Focus on what really matters to you, and forget everything else.

2 thoughts on “Fighting FOMO

  1. Very valid points. Interestingly I have never been prone to impulse purchases, but my husband of 34 years was prone to such impulse buys. Sometimes not so much impulsive, but “keeping up with the Joneses” purchases, where again I was not. It makes one wonder what causes each person to think in the way that they do regarding such purchases.

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    1. My impulse buys tend to be small things, like books or music. My husband, however, is a tech geek who is always after the newest shiny. And when a lot of tech stuff is designed to be obsolete in only a few years, it can be hard to be frugal and manage your impulses.

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