FOMO, JOMO, and the Therapeutic Effect of Cancelling

Adriana Leboss
4 min readDec 11, 2019

My social life lately feels like a super long Beirut Beer ad.

Not talking about the giggle fits with my besties. But my larger social life. The gatherings with acquaintances I don’t share much with, friends of friends with whom I don’t have anything in common, old friends who didn’t stand the test of time. Random acquaintances who, when they speak their mind over drinks at some casual outing, make me wish I was lying on my couch watching a documentary about ants on Nat Geo. Or Chef Antoine on Télé Liban.

The old days

Back in the days it was all about being out and about. We’d only stay in if we were lying in bed connected to some serum bag. #FOMO was our most crippling syndrome. Through sick and through sin, we’d be out every single night. I wonder how we made it through university when we partied every single night till 4am, and woke up at 7am to attend class. Now one night of drinking gives me a week-long hangover and crankiness that can only be cured with too much sleep and junk food. So yeah, it was all about being out. With our close circle. And our larger circle. And their close circle, and larger circle. The more, the merrier. A friend’s birthday? That’s one week of celebrations. A friend of a friend’s birthday? Another week! School reunion? Will pick you at 8! Oh, Maria is in town? Let’s meet! First day at job? Let’s all go out. Second week at a new job? We need to celebrate this!

The great nowadays or the underrated joy of missing out

So yeah. Now that I’ve narrowed down my circles till they started to make a point (pun intended), I have become a #JOMO fanatic. A flaking Nazi. Cancelling plans! That’s the best plan! (Smile of satisfaction).

-“Rain check?”

-“Let’s reschedule.”

-“Oh, I have a hangover/guest from (insert country)/allergy (to non-interesting discussions)/ intolerance to people with no sense of humor/ deadline next week.”

When in fact, I’m wearing my Starwars PJs and tucking my ass into bed, dreaming of my next sailing trip with total strangers so that I don’t even have to utter one word. Joking. Just felt the need to pull a Salt Bae for added drama haha.

With years, I have come to enjoy my own company much more and appreciate my ‘me time’ much much more; cancelling a less enjoyable experience has then become the norm. I don’t have to be a people-pleaser if the social event does not please me first. I’d rather put that energy elsewhere. On beauty sleep, for example! Haha.

Thing is, this lack of energy for uninteresting social events has even worsened with the advent of social media. We get fed so many useless pieces of info on our social feeds that the social allergy can only worsen. And being more and more selective becomes a natural response, an offline ‘unfollow’ to the overwhelming feed that feeds nothing but my anti-social tendencies. Yes, you can stay in my ‘friend’ list but please don’t show me what you’re up to. Because frankly, my dear…

Yeah well. That’s how it is.

Most of the times when I get a meetup request on WhatsApp, I do say yes. Because then, I really feel like wanting to go. But when the day arrives, I am more often than not either super tired or simply not in the mood.

Sometimes the suggested outing involves strangers. I am not an introvert, but I certainly ain’t excited either for meeting people I know I will never see again. Not a fan of those horrendous “Hi, I am xxx, what’s your name?” “Hi, I am ‘OhDearGodWhyDidIComeHere’ I mean I am Adriana.” “Adriana, quite an unusual name…” and i will spare you the rest of the convo, because I certainly had to be less “me” and more of a courteous, polite social being.

I don’t like to make plans on weekends either because that’s when I become anti-social. I can be a social butterfly from Monday to Friday, but Saturday and Sunday, well, I just can’t. When I read Saturday and Sunday in the same sentence as let’s/lunch/dinner/drinks I simply freak out.

So if you guys are wondering if I have friends- joking… I know you know I do, because most of my friends- my super interesting, funny and adorable friends… are no one else but… you!


Otherwise, do forgive me when I bail.

“Reschedule?” :P