Fear of Missing Outby Wendy Gladney on 11/04/19
Have you ever felt overwhelmed? Where you have way too much on your plate and no idea how to get it all done? I’ve been there many times over the span of my life. One of the things I’ve learned is that it is better to take on less and accomplish more than to feel like you must conquer the whole world. Oftentimes when we feel overwhelmed it is because we have taken on more than we can handle, we don’t have enough time, or we haven’t properly prepared. Most people have what’s called “FOMO” (fear of missing out). They feel they must do more so they can stay in the mix; so they don’t miss anything. But I believe that whatever God has for you, no one can take from you.
Over the course of my life, I have come to understand that I don’t have to try and go to or do everything in order to have a wonderful, purposeful and beautiful life. The question is, are you comfortable in your own skin? When we begin to feel good about who we are and what we do, it’s amazing how other things begin to fall in place. We begin to display a confidence that is contagious and complimentary and can even help others feel comfortable in their own skin. When I moved to Los Angeles to attend UCLA over four decades ago, I attended Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church. At that time the pastor was Dr. E.V. Hill and he used to always say, “If you can, don’t lie. If you can’t, don’t try.” That piece of advice has served me well over the years.
I think part of the problem some people face is trying to keep up with what they see on social, and other forms of, media. What’s wrong with this is that oftentimes what we see on social media has been filtered and altered to fit the image that individuals want the world to see. I think originally, social media was meant to just keep in touch with friends and family and share a few things going on in our worlds. Now, people have turned social media into a personal marketing machine. There’s nothing wrong with using social media to advance one’s career, but like the saying goes, “believe half of what you see and even less of what you hear.” Don’t compare your life with what is behind a veil or filtered through a lens.
Running an event management company and a nonprofit for over a quarter of a century, I’ve spent most of my life in the public working with and serving the community. I enjoy what I do, and I’ve had my share of the paparazzi and red carpets, but what I’ve come to enjoy more than anything are quiet days at home enjoying my family (especially my grandbabies) and traveling taking in God’s beautiful world. When I do attend activities in the community and special events, I enjoy them and support them any way I can, but if for some reason I can’t attend something it is okay. I would hope my “presence” is felt even when I’m absent. When we live our best life and our true self you don’t have to worry about missing out.
The easiest way to not get caught up in FOMO is to focus on making your life the best it can be. Focus on being the best you can be. Learn to love yourself, warts and all. It’s okay if we look to others for encouragement or guidance, but it’s best to be an original you versus an imitation of someone else. Even when you don’t feel it, we were all made on purpose and for a purpose. Spend more time working on yourself and then you will be able to give to the world what God meant for you to do.
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