It’s OK to miss out, focus on yourself

Carole Hodorowicz, Columnist

It is about time I addressed something that has been going on for a long time. I am done hiding it.

I have an extreme Fear of Missing Out (FOMO).

You may be laughing now, but the severity of my case is nothing to take lightly. I walk the fine line between sanity and insanity as I force myself to try to do it all.

It started out simple. I never wanted to miss out on any social event.

This consisted of anything from long drives with all the windows down, music loud and friends by my side to nights out in Chucktown.

Being the goody goody I am but pretend not to be, I still always made it to class, completed all of my studying and assignments and received good grades. However, it came with a price that I could only pay in the form of all-nighters, cup after cup of coffee and only a couple hours of sleep or the occasional power nap.

But the memories are worth it, I told myself. I still think they were worth it to this day.

As my college career continued on, I developed other forms of FOMO. I was constantly telling myself I was not doing enough.

I worked for three student publications while also having 16 credit hours, working part time at a restaurant off campus, being an active member of a sorority with multiple positions and of course, making every memory I possibly could with my friends to preserve the “good ‘ol days.”

I convinced myself that I needed to be present for everything or else I would be nothing: I would not be a good friend, a good journalist or a good member of the EIU community.

But when you stretch yourself so thin, you cannot fully be present for anyone or anything—especially yourself.

While trying to do everything, I forgot the most important thing: doing things for myself. Instead, I used whatever time I did find myself with thinking about what I could be doing rather than what I should be doing for myself.

This semester, I have been working as an intern at the Health Education Resource Center.

There, I have learned the importance of self-love and self-care. Taking care of yourself is the most important job that you have.

Do not worry about missing one night of going out—I assure you, your friends will not forget you. Do not stress about not joining this club or that organization—that opportunity will present itself to you again, I promise. Do not beat yourself up for needing a break—we all need one now and again.

Remember you are a priority.

“Free time” is called “free” for a reason. Use it to do something you love that will remind yourself that everything you have already accomplished is incredible and that what is to come is waiting for you when you are ready.

Carole Hodorowicz is a senior journalism major. She can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].