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What started as humorous slang for that "Fear Of Missing Out" (that anxious feeling you get when you know other people are hanging out and doing fun things without you) has turned into a real-life condition for many, many people. (Image: PeopleImages)

FOMO is actually a real condition. Here's how to deal

It's Friday night at 10 p.m...

Wait, let's start over - this time being honest.

It's Friday night at 6 p.m. and you're laying on the couch snuggled up in your favorite blanket, wine in one hand and the remote in the other, ready to pull an all-nighter Netflix binge session. Then you reach for the phone just to 'take a peek' at Facebook - you know, just to see what similarly *lame* things your friends are up to for the evening.

Three hours later you're STILL scrolling through feeds and you feel a massive dose of FOMO. What started as humorous slang for that "Fear Of Missing Out" (that anxious feeling you get when you know other people are hanging out and doing fun things without you) has turned into a real-life condition for many, many people.

But don't trust us. Lifestyle Coach Lena Meyer, founder of Gratitude6, says it's a major problem in this day and age. So when that crippling anxiety hits, what should you do? Here are 5 tips directly from Meyer's coaching toolbox that you can use.

1. Get present.

Start your day by connecting to the present moment and allowing yourself to just BE. As simple as this sounds, we can get so easily sucked into the world of To Do’s (worries about the future) and Missed Opportunities (worries about the past) before we even get out of bed! Doing so means we end up starting each day in a frenzy. Maybe our mind begins racing all by itself as soon as the alarm goes off, or even worse - we pick up our phone and start checking email and social media before we’re even out of bed. Instead, take a few minutes to do some deep-breathing with the intention to be present with yourself as you move throughout the day. Think of it a starting your day with a nutritious breakfast for the mind, where the simplicity of a few deep breaths first thing in the morning can set you up for a day of greater enjoyment and success.

2. Do a digital detox.

Social media, email, texts - these are surefire ways to suck us into the land of missed opportunity, and social media especially is designed to keep us hooked on the platform, scrolling continuously for the next best thing to do (or latest thing we missed.) FOMO alert! Do you check your phone as soon as you wake up? Try taking a break for one week in the mornings and see what happens. Maybe this means waiting an hour after waking before looking at your phone, only checking social media after 5 p.m., or taking a few days to unplug from it altogether.

3. Keep a daily gratitude journal.

If you’re afraid of missing out, that means there’s a good chance you’re not seeing what is already good and wonderful in your life right now at this very moment. We so often set goals for ourselves, or think of things we want, and as soon as we experience them, it’s two seconds of enjoyment and then off to figuring out the next best thing to put on our checklist of life. Are you really missing out, or are you just not noticing what’s already going well? For one week, write down three new things each day that you are grateful for. Begin by noticing things that bring you joy, meaningful interactions with others, celebrations or successes you’ve experienced, and new life lessons you’ve learned. By doing so, you’ll start to draw awareness to what matters to you most in life, and soak in the goodness of what already exists.

4. Make a contribution.

Often what we are seeking is the desire to make a difference - to be known, seen, valued, and connected. Getting out of our own heads and into the community to help and support others in a positive way is one of the quickest ways to shift out of FOMO and into living life. Perhaps it starts with taking an extra moment to connect with the person ringing you up at your local café or grocery, joining that volunteer group you’ve had your eye on, or making an impact by finally sharing your greatest gifts, talents, and passions with the world.

5. Commit to taking one action today.

Ask “What is my next step?” We can get overwhelmed with the possibilities in life, and this article alone provides 5 different ways to overcome FOMO! Worried you’ll pick the wrong one? Well, guess what…now you’re back in FOMO-land. Take a moment, take a deep breath, and ask yourself – “What is the one thing I choose to put into action today?” Trust your intuition, follow through, and give yourself some credit when you successfully complete the action you set in motion.

You can do it, we believe in you!

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