The Fear of Missing Out.
I think this is an internet-era way of saying opportunity cost. But it makes sense to have a new way to describe this feeling – of being afraid to lose one experience by choosing another, because all we have these days are choices.
There is something romantic about hearing old people say
In my day, we went out and got a job! Joe, cop on and get yourself one!
It’s the older generation presenting their noble priorities. Earn a good wage doing an honest job, look after your family. But really, fuck that. I mean, getting ‘a job’, not looking after your family.
I’m not saying jobs are all bad. I’ve had a few of them. They were decent for the most part. I may well have another one at some point. But having a 50-year career in the same position, or working for the proverbial man – there are too many fantastic opportunities in this world for that kind of carry-on.
Working abroad, travel, volunteering, entrepreneurship, taking a 6 month hiatus to take photographs or learn Swahili and or become an opera singer. Who said we always have to be working?
This world offers so many exciting paths to walk down. It’s impossible not to feel some FOMO. At the moment, I’m surfing the buffet of ideas, trying to decide what to do next. With my ‘career’, with my life. I am on a deep dive in the Sea of FOMO.
But I try to remember that all the options are great. I am in a very lucky position. Both in comparison to many people around the world who don’t have the same opportunities, and in comparison to previous generations when the ‘get out ta fuck and get a job!’ mentality was to a large extent borne from necessity, not preference.
Mindset is key. It will be really tough to say no to some of the gigs that are coming my way, or to let some fantastic adventures slip away. But whatever path I do walk down, with a little bit of luck, will be amazing anyway. So the important thing is, I guess, making the right choices.
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