I have a wonderful life. I know it. You know it. Yet I find myself looking around and wondering why I do not have trips to Europe, a giant savings account or a new car in my life. The dreaded Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) strikes again.
Most of us (all of us?) feel that we are missing out on something. Facebook and easy communications have increased this sensation. My cousins are off on another fabulous family cruise. I sit in Denver working on my to-do list making sure that we have things handled before venturing back to our isolated park in southeastern Utah. My posts on Facebook are about the great stuff in my life but my daily reality includes sweating profusely through my workouts (with nothing to show for the effort, by the way), cooking, cleaning, worrying about money and being sure I am missing everything.
My research has uncovered a great article by Martha Beck (you can read it here). But I will summarize my favorite take-aways.
Combating the Fear Of Missing Out
FOMO comes from thinking other people have better lives than we do. Parts of their lives are great. But they don’t mention the family fights, eating cereal for dinner instead of cooking, the time they lost their phone or how difficult their co-workers are. Our glimpses are only a piece of the truth. One truism says that if you sat in a group of friends and everyone put a list of the problems they face on a piece of paper, you would look through the pile and pick your own set of troubles. Yes, everyone has them. So, pay attention to the good stuff in your own life. I have found I have to make a list of wonderful things we have done so I can remember during those low moments.
2. We can re-enginer the acronym to work for us. What else could those letters stand for that remind us of what we already have? The author suggests a few: Feel Okay More Often – find little things that give us pleasure and focus on them;Find One Magnificent Object – appreciate something wonderful in your own life; and my personal favorite “Flocks Of Magic Otters.” She adds, “What, you don’t think these actually exist? Huh. They’re no more outlandish than believing that everyone you know has a more awesome life than you.” I made up one, too. Focus On My Own. Do you have a car that runs? Someone who cares about you? A home? Comfort food available to eat? Past experiences that make you smile when you remember them? Luckily, each life has its good moments.
The trick is to pay attention to when we feel sad about what we don’t have and make an effort to notice all we already have in our lives. Yes, it is easier said than done, but has become more automatic with practice. Daily gratitude, being kind to others and noticing other people’s smiles all help me stay focused on the good side of my life. Finally, for me, writing things down always supports my efforts. I feel lucky that you take the time to read my blogs. Thanks!
“In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day–or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru
I have several favorite movies that I can watch time and again, even though I have practically memorized the dialogue. While I clean house or cook dinner, I can listen to them while I work and run back to the television to watch my favorite parts. I don’t need to watch each minute. After all, I know most of them by heart.
Here is a list of my top favorite movies:
The Two Towers (Lord of the Rings) – This is my favorite of the three Lord of the Rings movies. The story is moving along, we know the characters and adventure happens. What’s not to love?
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade – Harrison Ford and Sean Connery. Need I say more?
Juno – This witty movie has so many cute lines I have trouble not just sitting down and watching it start to finish. Who needs a clean house?
Little Miss Sunshine – A dark comedy that I know not everyone appreciates, but I love how the family grows together through their mishaps.
The Birdcage – I know. Cage Aux Folles was the inspiration for this movie and many like the original better. But I enjoy the story line of the American version. Besides, Robin Williams and Nathan Lane are perfect together.
Top Gun– This is Tom Cruise in his prime, in my opinion. High action, fast jets, good looking actors all combine to make me forget to cook.
Independence Day– Will Smith’s jump from television to movies works for me. I am a fan of science fiction, inspirational speeches and I like happy endings. This movie has it all.
True Lies– The interactions between Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jaime Lee Curtis and Tom Arnold are priceless. I think it is the only movie Tom Arnold did that I like! (I believe I am not alone in this opinion.)
Scent of a Woman – Chris O’Donnell and Al Pacino are amazing. The line “I’m in the dark here” comes in handy almost every night.
The Princess Bride– The best lines are “As you wish” and “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”
There are few Dave and I always agree on and watch together:
The Hunt for Red October – I watched it so much, my daughter gave a copy of it to me as a joke. The truth is I still watch it as often as possible. She rolls her eyes.
Blind Side–Such a good movie. Sandra Bullock and Tim McGraw make a great combination for this inspiring story.
The Shawshank Redemption– I think this one is almost universally loved. (Is love too strong a word? I think not.)
My Cousin Vinny– Joe Pesci cracks us up. But I think Dave’s favorite is actually Marisa Tomei. Just sayin.
Blazing Saddles – So politically incorrect yet so funny. It is shocking how much they got away with when they made this movie.
Young Frankenstein – A ridiculous movie that makes me laugh every time I see it.
Trading Places – A cast of stars from the 80’s all together to play a Robin Hood story.
Oh Brother Where Art Thou– A clever remake of Homer’s Odyssey and George Clooney. What a combination.
Dave has his own list of favorite movies:
1. Outlaw Josey Wales
2. Saving Private Ryan
3. Band of Brothers
4. Super Bad
I do not have kind comments for any of these movies so I will refrain. He watches these when I am out of town or otherwise out of the house. (I have romantic comedy ones that I watch when he is gone. I think that’s fair. Don’t you?)
As I look over the list, I realize most of my favorite movies were made decades ago. I have found that most of us prefer the music we listened to when we were in high school. I wonder if my favorite movies are the ones I watched when I was younger. With DVD’s and the internet, I can keep watching the familiar ones. I enjoy new movies but still retreat the old favorites more often than not.
Maybe you want to play the game. Are your favorites on my list? I would love to see your list!
“The difference between life and the movies is that a script has to make sense, and life doesn’t.” – Joseph L. Mankiewicz
My recent decision to blog has been wonderful. Except when it isn’t. I have found that I am susceptible to the most ridiculous urges. Pretty much when I do not have pictures to post, I struggle with coming up with ideas.
Instead of brainstorming or being creative, I recognize I have 7 different habits that can distract me for hours.
The kitchen: Why is it that when I want to avoid doing something, I get hungry? Okay, not really hungry, but it seems that anything in the pantry is more interesting than the task at hand. Even Triscuits. And that is saying a lot.
Hot Tea: A sub-category of the kitchen trap. Hot tea allows me to wait for the water to boil, gives me an opportunity peruse my tea bag collection and of course needing to wait until the tea is cool enough to drink. It even has the added virtue of being calorie free. This is a deadly combination when it comes to being distracted from my goals.
Social Media: How many times a day can one human being check Facebook, Twitter and Instagram? The number is staggering. I finally turned off my phone’s notifications for email. My phone would beep every time I sat down. So one temptation is gone. Three to go.
Songs I Know The Words To: I find myself singing out loud whenever a song I like comes on. When I have on my I-Pod I am doomed because I like ALL of those songs. I have found that I have to put on instrumentals (Boring) or I can’t get any work done.
Television: We have not had television for months so now that we have satellite television, it is a siren call. It is especially hard to resist knowing that in 3 weeks we will once again be in a spot with no television reception. This one is probably one of my biggest temptations. Luckily daytime television is still terrible. Remember that song: 57 Channels and Nothing On by Bruce Springsteen? It is still true, except of course we are now past 57 and inching up into the thousands.
The Internet: Isn’t it fun what you can search for on the world wide web? I can follow any subject into a rabbit hole and eat up the entire day. I always hope that I will find some scintillating piece of information that I can use at the next party I attend. But I can never seem to remember the facts longer than a few hours, much less long enough for a party.
Cleaning: I know. I only clean when I am avoiding something else. Lately the house has been spotless.
Know that I did each and every one of these things today. But I also am publishing this blog and accomplished more than I expected at the end of the day. Thank goodness. Now to go watch television. Guilt free.