JOMO could help increases concentration and productivity. JOMO could help increases concentration and productivity. Image: Shutterstock
With the rise of social media, we're often tempted to attend any event where our friends might be for fear of missing out, or FOMO. But the opposite phenomenon also exists. JOMO, or the joy of missing out, takes a positive approach to not being constantly online or involved in every activity.
Have you ever felt the urge to switch off from social media and put the brakes on going out for a while? If so, you could be ready to indulge in a little JOMO. This acronym, which stands for the Joy Of Missing Out, represents the idea of finding happiness and satisfaction in missing or not taking part in certain activities, taking a step back from social events, and enjoying time alone or in a quieter way. On TikTok, where the hashtag #JOMO has amassed almost 53 million views, internet users explain that they prefer to spend cozy evenings taking care of themselves, reading, cooking or sleeping. The idea is to disconnect for an evening from social networks and avoid checking your phone for the slightest notification.
The term JOMO was theorized by Anil Dash, an American entrepreneur, in an article posted on his blog in 2012, in opposition to FOMO, the Fear Of Missing Out on something (an event, some news, etc.). Having just become a father, he realized that he had missed out on a lot in the month following the birth of his son, and that he felt no "fear" or regret about it. On the contrary, he described it as a state of joy.
According to Cleveland Clinic, this pleasure of intentionally missing out on something can have a number of benefits for our daily lives, such as increasing productivity and concentration, commitment to relationships and improving emotional and physical well-being. But JOMO, which is related to the concept of ROMO or relief of missing out, doesn't mean cutting all ties with the outside world and saying goodbye to your social life. Instead of always saying yes to the slightest social occasion, you can be more selective and choose the events you really want to attend. As for social networks, you can define periods of downtime in order to focus on yourself and recharge your batteries.
"Social connection is healthy, and social media, for its many flaws and foibles, provides a means for connection. JOMO is not about eschewing those connections entirely or self-isolating from others," Chris Barry, a psychology professor at Washington State University, told the Washington Post.
"Is JOMO good or bad? While there are plenty of positive reasons for JOMO, it doesn’t mean you should strive to live a JOMO life 24/7," explains Cleveland Clinic. "If there’s a downside to JOMO, it’s that FOMO can often be a motivator for you to step out of your comfort zone and explore new things," the psychologist Susan Albers told Cleveland Clinic. "And seeing what other people are doing can give you new ideas that you wouldn’t have thought of."