When I first started Wholehearted Woman, I had a super big fear of missing out, otherwise commonly known as "fomo".
I wanted to do everything under the sun from collaborating with everyone (literally everyone who expressed the slightest interest), wanting to make a million and one courses about anything that came to mind, wanting to be on all the social media platforms (even the ones that weren’t related to my niche), and a million other things. My mind is always buzzing with ideas and my eyes are always seeing what other people are doing.
Sometimes, it feels like I have 10 new ones every day.
This left me feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, and tired before I even had the chance to get out of bed. Seriously, my life felt like a big mess and I constantly felt like I was on edge.
Before I really dive in on this topic, I would like to say that there are still moments and days when the fear of missing comes rushing out like a waterfall and I start running around like a headless chicken trying to accomplish every goal and task under the sun.
Here are 3 things you can do to keep your fear of missing out at bay:
1. Keep an idea notebook.
Literally just jot down every idea that comes to you in this notebook. It doesn’t matter if you’ve already thought of this idea in the past and written it down before. I suggest you write it down again; the reason for this is because if you don’t, you’ll keep thinking and thinking about it and your mind is going to think that you’re missing out on something valuable. And so you’re going to keep worrying about it and keep repeating it to yourself over and over again, which means you have to process this idea over and over again.
If you’re out, jot your ideas down on your phone or on a napkin. Once you have your notebook again, you can add it to your idea pile. The idea notebook can be online or offline, whichever works best for you.
2. Acknowledge that you cannot do everything at once, and that’s okay.
We fear that if we don’t work on our ideas at this very exact minute, we’re going to lose it forever. And it will never come back.
But how many times have you thought of the same idea? How many times have you had sub-ideas for those ideas? Probably a lot, right? So what are the chances that this specific idea is going to go away?
This idea of yours came from you. It came from your brain, which means you already know what your idea is. You know the in’s and out’s of it.
Don't spread yourself too thinly. Remember that you're in a marathon and not a spirit.
3. Stick with one idea and see it to the end.
So you have a million ideas in your idea book.
Pick one and be realistic about your expectations. For example, don't start a Twitter account expecting 10,000 followers by tomorrow or a blog and expect 500 readers by tomorrow (unless you already have an existing audience).
If you want to write a book, don't try to launch a podcast and start another new project in the same month or time frame, unless you have someone or a whole team you can delegate tasks to. Work on your book first. Your talking points, your first draft, your revisions, your editing, your marketing, etc. Work on your book until the end, i.e. make sure it's a real thing, before trying to work on the 5 other things you want to work on.
When you try to "multitask", you are actually making your mind switch from task to task, which means neither task has your full attention.
We live in a society that encourages the "go, go, go" mentality and where multitasking is seen as a "skill" and something to be valued, but working on multiple things at once actually does more harm than good.
Stick with one project at a time. Trust me, your brain will thank you and you'll actually know what you're working on instead of trying to do guesswork all the time and being everywhere at once. When we have too many ideas, we don't have too many results.
Ideas are just ideas until there's action involved.
Don't just have ideas, remember to take action on them.
Tell me in the comments below, what actions are you taking this week? What are you focusing on today? And how do you deal with your fear of missing out?
Hi there! I'm Molly, the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Wholehearted Woman. A storyteller, introvert, self-love advocate, and multi-passionate creative with big dreams and even bigger fears. I help women find their voice, share their stories, and authentically embrace who they are.
You can read more about me and my mission here.