FOMO’s awesome sibling

How to find joy? Marie Kondo’s books may hold the secret for some, but I’m happy to share one of my secret portals to this magical state of being.

It begins with an afternoon like this: A picture-perfect Sunday with brilliant sunshine, warm air and a cool breeze. Throngs are amassed at the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass music festival in Golden Gate Park. An entirely different array of throngs are gathered on heights and near the water to watch the spectacles of Fleet Week.

Me and my trusty laptop are communing beneath the branches of the old Meyer lemon tree, the central anchor of a garden I’m grateful to have out the back door. Bees are buzzing overhead as they make their rounds to intoxicatingly sweet blossoms. Sipping tea and glancing around as I type, I think about the contentedness and joy in sitting right here right now.

For some, a fear of missing out (a.k.a. FOMO) on any of the big annual happenings would be unimaginable. For me, marching to my own inner compass was made far from fear. The choice was made by knowing what would bring me the most joy.

This variety of joy is something I discovered a name for while waiting for breakfast halfway around the world in mid-2017. Flipping through the newspaper a previous cafe patron left behind, I grinned wider than you can imagine when I came upon a cartoon by the Australian artist Michael Leunig*. Allow me to introduce you to FOMO’s sibling, JOMO, the joy of missing out.


*My photo of the artwork used with permission from Leunig Studio.


Debra Baida is the owner of Liberated Spaces.
  1. Regina

    Thanks for giving language to what so many can’t seem to put their finger on.

    You’re right– clutter can be events as well as shiny objects. Who can hear their own inner voice with all that going on?