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Tips and Updates

The Joy of Missing Out

Posted on 10 February, 2014 at 9:10

Small business owners are some of the busiest people and we often become overwhelmed with all the networking, maketing and information opportunities available to us.

I could easily fill my week with webinars, networking lunches and evening seminars and still worry that I mave have "missed out" on something great . :/

Greg McKeown, the author of "Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less" speaks to "the fear of missing out" (or FOMO) in this excerpt of one of his posts from LinkedIn.

"Here are five hacks you might consider, to move from the fear of missing out to the joy of missing out.

Hack #1 Just because you can do both doesn't mean you should do both.

Next time you are invited to an event or meeting when you already have something catch yourself when the thought crosses your mind, “I will do both.” When you do, stop, pause and pick one of the choices. Even though you might actually be able to fit them in, discipline yourself to still pick one. At the end of the day, reflect on the tradeoffs you made and what this resulted in.

Hack #2 Just because you committed doesn't mean you can't uncommit.

Look at each commitment on your calendar for the next few weeks. Ask “If I wasn’t already involved how hard would I work to attend?” If the answer is “not hard at all” then ask to be released from your commitment: “I know I said I would be at this but I think I spoke too soon.”

Hack #3 If you want to add a new commitment get rid of an existing one.

Establish a new rule: if you want to add a new activity you need to edit out an existing activity. This simple rule ensures you don't add an activity that is less valuable than something you are already doing. Hold tightly to this idea if you are considering setting up any regular or repeated commitment and think long and hard about all the things you would have to give up in order to take this new thing on.

Hack #4 Just because you did it last time isn't a good enough reason to do it again.

Not every successful event has to become an annual tradition. Sometimes, well-intended activities add up overtime and become a type of schedule scar tissue. There is something noble in declaring something the first and last of its kind. Make the memory, then let the memory live on rather than the tradition. Allow space to make new memories. Then allow those too to lapse without creating a burden on your future. We need to put an expiration date on once-good-but-now-burdensome-activities.

Hack #5 When you think, "Wouldn't it be great if..." Just stop.

A friend was just telling me of an idea someone had to wear the same color t-shirts at an event they were planning. Soon this turned into buying exactly the same t-shirt for everyone. Then it became creating branded t-shirts (with all of the graphic design and ordering that go with it). It became a time and money stress as the idea grew out of all proportion and, in the process, no longer fit for purpose. Playing with ideas and new projects is great but give yourself permission not to pursue all of them. Go for simplification instead of aggrandizement.

I think we have been oversold the idea of more and undersold the idea of less.

Instead of adding more out of a vague fear of missing out, we can choose to subtract a few meetings, events and overstuffed traditions. In the process we may quietly revel in the new found joy of missing out."

Categories: Small Business, Time management

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