Perhaps you’ve heard of FOMO, otherwise known as, the Fear of Missing Out. The problem with this mentatily is there will always be something you’re missing. Choosing one thing means not choosing another, and so there will always be something happening, either online or in the physical world, that you’ll miss out on.

Missing out is a reality we all have to live with. And yet it can be a cause of angst for many today. But what if you were to look at this reality in a different light? Instead of being afraid of it, or frustrated by it, what if you learned to experience joy in the midst of it?

Recently I stumbled across the term JOMOthe Joy of Missing Out1—and I like the idea it conveys. Instead of seeing missing out as something to be afraid of, it’s possible to see it as an occation for joy.

Why? A few reasons come to mind.

First, you can find joy in knowing that a lot of the things you may be “missing out” on aren’t really that important to begin with. Life will go on.

Second, you can also find joy in the freedom that not being “in the know” can bring: the freedom to choose where to put your focus; the freedom from unneccessary stress and concern—and even envy—that can arise from being too preoccupied with the news or social media.

Finally, you can find joy when you consider what “missing out” allows you to give your full attention to. If you’re not worrying about what you’re missing, you’re free to focus on the people—like family or friends—or the work that is right in front of you.

Sure, you may be missing out on something, somewhere. But that will always be the case. And if you’re willing to accept it, you may actually come to find joy in not constantly worrying about what you might be missing.


  1. I’m not sure who originally came up with this term. I first heard it in an interview with Jason Fried, but have since seen the term used in various places that go back several years. [return]