Fear of Missing out on Something
àThe emotion that compels you to join your friends, colleagues or peers at a social event, when you know you shouldn't, can’t, or actually really don't feel like it.
à “I was really tired from the night before but I got a serious case of the FOMS so went out anyway.”
I have to admit to having the ‘FOMS’ on a regular base.
Not particularly proud to reveal this, but my therapist always tells me to share my shortcomings so I will come across as more approachable to the average.
For me, this FOMS-ordeal started at a young age. I remember to pretend to be clinically dead when my parents –God bless their bank account- urged me to “Come with!” to their farting old friends. Brilliant as my staged death act always kicked off; the minute my parents left me for fake-dead in my crafty cardboard coffin, I just KNEW that my theatrically living brothers would be rewarded with the best home baked cookies at grown-ups Scotch-time.
Immediately the FOMS would kick in without repentance and my coffin would be soaked with my blue-est bodily fluids by the time they returned with perfectly crafted crumbs stuck to their stupid smiles.
Sad thing is though, that now that I am ten (twenty-five *AAB) years older, I still don’t seem to have learned a thing.
I partly blame it on the industry I (pretend to *AAB) work in.
Apart from the cast of ‘Goede Tijden Slechte Tijden’ and Ben & Dean Sounders’ parents, I believe people working in the advertising-industry to be the most exposed to potential FOMS.
We have Pre-Cannes borrels, Cannes-themselves borrels, After-Cannes borrels, Don’t-Forget-About-Cannes borrels, Cannes-Picture-Swopping borrels, X-Pollination, Pop Up Petanque, massive Massive borrels and of course 365 –ex-tre-me-ly important- Annual Award Shows.
All of the above certainly is one of the attractions of the industry to me, but it can make me quite anxious too.
I believe the constant stream of information, multiplied by the countless social-networking sites, has made this often well-disguised phenomenon even bigger and more intrusive in our self-assured adult life. After all, it's easy to feel you're missing out when the event announcements and all their blissful live-feed pictures are popping up on your timeline when at that same moment you are picking your nose in front of your cat.
This year I skipped Cannes’ Lions.
Sounded very mature and cocksure at first.
But because of the extreme blizzards and the devastating showers that had taken Amsterdam by storm, I was basically imprisoned with Facebook as my only connection to the ‘scene’.
Whilst eating moldy pumpernickel bread, I saw steamy French baguettes, richly decorated with Tim Mintiens' famous BBQ-prawns flashing by on my once so me-dominated newsfeed. All this sunny food was impeccably sandwiched between perfectly bronzed boobs and shimmering pools.
Man, did I cry.
The fact that the bronzed boobs belonged to my ex-boyfriend -who seemed to have a perfect good time without me- as well as the fact that the pool used as the setting had been that very same pool I once so joyfully peed in, made it even more unbearable for me to watch.
Sure. Deep down inside, I do realize that without having a part of my left earlobe tagged once a day, in a way social life still can be somewhat fulfilling.
I mean; I know my parents will still love me regarding my lack of social recognitions, and cats and hamsters don’t even know what Facebook-invites are.
But hey, despite them positives:
At the end I’m still that living little dead girl laying in a cardboard coffin, just wishing to have ‘been there’ at cookie-time.