FoMO 

  
Plenty of coverage; and several good conversations this week about FoMO – the digitally enabled fear of missing out.

As we all become more and more square-eyed from looking at screens all the time; the inability to separate ourselves from them is becoming a problem for young and old. And also at work…

I’ve found – like a lab rat with sugar solution – that I can’t help looking for and leaping on emails, night as well as day; and at weekends. And if I’m not doing that I’m checking Twitter, LinkedIn, the news or some other source of work-related stimulus.

Is this stimulus or are these stimulants? Today walking in the park with my folks and the kids, we spotted and then admired the stillness of an elegant and ‘professorially’ precise heron, perching and peering from a branch…

For once I don’t have a photo. My phone languished in my pocket as we watched. Not that I didn’t think of it. No phone means no Instagram, no Tweet, no digital record; just an experience, a moment and a memory: which will likely soon be forgotten.

The biggest fear with FoMO is missing out on life. Progressively, since my first iPhone in 2007, they’ve just got better, richer and more interesting as handheld windows on the world. But that’s the trap.

Is it better to watch a heron; or to record and share a heron? If all the focus is on snapping, posting and hashtagging it, have you really seen it at all? And oops there’s a work email; forget herons…

I need to watch my FoMO and (sometimes) stop looking at my screen. I’m putting it down in 5, 4, 3, 2… gone.

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