FOMO and Followers

On this episode of THE COMPANY WE KEEP, host Jason Pearl talks about how personal and professional FOMO (fear of missing out) can hijack your success, and he lays out tips on how to combat it.

All right. All right, let's do this again. This is The Company We Keep podcast.

My name is Jason Pearl, and I am excited for you guys to be with us for another episode today.

This podcast is for everyday business owners and entrepreneurs that want to think differently about growth. I want to think differently about success and want to do everything they can to achieve a better balance in both business and life.

On this episode, we are going to be talking about FOMO, and followers. FOMO stands for the fear of missing out.

And it is real in our society. It's real in our lives. It invades not just our personal lives, but it invades our business life as well. And today we're going to talk about that.

We're going to address it and we're going to give you some ways to hopefully overcome certain things that affect your life when it comes to fear of missing out.

One of the things that also comes in with a FOMO is the need or the want to start following as well. We live in a follower culture, right?

Whether how many followers do you have on Instagram or how many people are following you on your social media handles and things of that nature.

So fear of missing out and following is I believe very connected, and today we're going to address it. So why don't we get started?


So again, FOMO stands for fear of missing out - if you go and you search online to try to see what the definition of it is the fear of -missing out, refers to the feeling or perception that others are having more fun.

They're living better lives.

They're experiencing better things than you are.

Oftentimes FOMO involves a really deep sense of envy and it affects and shakes your self esteem to the core.

FOMO is often exacerbated by social media sites.

Whether it's Instagram, whether it's Facebook, whether it's LinkedIn, whether it's Snapchat, whatever the case may be.

Oftentimes fear of missing out is really heightened due to social media sites and our ability to consume so much of social media.

But FOMO is not just the sense that there might be better things that you could be doing at this moment.

But it's also the feeling that you're missing out on something fundamentally important that others are experiencing right now.

And that's where really hits us.

And I think it's probably fair to say that all of us in some way, shape or form at some time of our lives and probably even at this stage in our life right now, wherever you find yourself when you're listening to this, and we've all experienced FOMO.

We've all experienced maybe scrolling through social media and seeing pictures of people at this beautiful beach and they seem to be having so much fun and you're just struggling to get through your day, let alone don't even see an opportunity long-term to have that same beach vacation that you crave, that you see your friend on social media has, or something along those lines.


There's so much around this.

And I think oftentimes we look at this as a personal issue.

And I believe that it's definitely a personal issue, but it finds its way into your professional life as well.

This podcast is for everybody, but it definitely has a business tilt to it.

One of the things I'm gifted at is helping businesses find ways to be more successful on a consistent basis.

So this podcast is definitely for business owners. It's definitely for entrepreneurs, but it's really, for anybody that's looking for success in balance in life.

Last week we talked about success, being a choice, we talked about how important it is to define your own success.

And you're going to hear that theme resonate throughout this podcast as well throughout this episode .

When it comes to fear of missing out we know that social media plays into this.

We also know that a lot of where fear of missing out comes from is confidence.

Not so much just confidence in who you are as an individual, but confidence in the decisions that you've made confidence in what you're doing today, and maybe confidence in what your tomorrow looks like.

We're hopefully on the tail end of a pandemic right now as I'm recording this episode, but we are in a pandemic.

There is uncertainty in this world.

There are a lot of things that are going on that maybe we don't have control of.

There are things that maybe shake our confidence and those are things that are not healthy.

But there's certain things that we can't control.

And certainly nobody thought that there was going to be a pandemic that was essentially going to shut our world out for 12 months.

But confidence is definitely something that has been shaken.

So you may find that over the past year because of the pandemic, because of quarantine, that you find yourself, maybe inside your house or inside your house apartment or wherever you've lived, more than maybe you have been in the previous years.

You may find yourself maybe a little more addicted to your phone and social media and social media outlets where you're consistently scrolling and constantly looking for entertainment.

But a lot of this just comes down to the lack of confidence of the path that you're on as an individual. So the detractors that come into fear of missing out is obviously comparison and confidence, right?


You may be thinking that you're not where you should be, or you're not on the exact right path.

And you find yourself comparing where you're at with others that are in your circle.

And this is a very dangerous thing to do.

We talked last week about how important it is to choose your personal success, what success means for you as an individual.

And if you have not done that, if you haven't maybe done the homework from last week's episode, as you're listening to this episode, I think you're going to feel, and you're going to find that defining your success as an individual is going to be intertwined with everything that's happening in your life.

I've talked about some of my core philosophies when it comes to, getting growth out of people and that's understanding what's going on in the head, what's going on in the heart, and what's going on at your house and home.

The three H's if you will.

And when you understand what's going on in your head, what's going on in your heart, and what's going on in your household and what you have to be responsible for and manage, that should help you define your success.

And once you do, that's going to help you maybe combat certain things that are going on when it comes to the fear of missing out.

The fear of missing out, certainly as many personal problems associated with it.

But I have seen firsthand that it's also affects what your professional life is.

Speaking to maybe a group of leaders or high level executives or high performing business folk throughout this podcast.

Fear of missing out is a real thing in business as well.

It's just not personal accounts that people are scrolling through.

You spend any time on LinkedIn and you see what's going on in LinkedIn.

Those are business leaders.

Those are executives.

Those are people that are looking and scrolling through it everyday.

Just like they're scrolling through Instagram.

And this is something that with leaders and executives and managers and directors, when you feel like you're missing out on something, cause maybe you see your competition doing it differently, or maybe you see that main competitor down the street trying something different.

It makes you feel like you need to do something different as well.

And what it does is it causes erratic decision making, sometimes erratic spending, and it takes you off of your core focus or your core goal.

Most good businesses have mission statement.

They have goals, they have things that they should be steadfast at.

And oftentimes, when you start to feel like you're not doing something right, or you're missing out on something that your competition's doing, it creates a kind of a nervousness and an aggressiveness often in your decision-making that often is not appropriate, and could be very dangerous.

Just think about life as a whole.

Think about how we're marketed to as individuals.

If you ever watched TV at night or anything like that, you'll find that we as human beings are marketed to not miss out on an opportunity.

And I'm not saying it's all bad, but you can relate to me.

Think about "This deal is only good for the next two hours." You look at an infomercial, "But wait, there's more, if you order in the next 60 minutes, we're going to double your offer and then we're going to throw in a bag of knives or something."

We're marketed to, to not miss out on things, the, get it before it's gone.

Even in the online world or the online culture it's, "I've got three slots left and I'm not going to open another maybe coaching slot, or I'm not going to offer this again for the next 18 months. So if you want to work with me, you have to do it now."

From a marketing perspective, it's genius. It creates action.

I've been sales leader for the majority of my adult life.

Creating action is something that is important.

But we have to understand what truly is important for us.

And does that line up with the action that we are being marketed to take.

And if it's not lined up with what our vision is, and what our culture is, and what we really want, and what we've defined as success and what we're going after.

Then you can't do things like that. This is not for me to take a shot at, my marketing folks out there because I love them, being a sales leader my whole life, the marketing side of the business is so critically important.

You can't succeed in sales without marketing, and you can't succeed in marketing without sales.

You need to be able to do them together. But from a human perspective, the fear of missing out, and the culture that it creates, and the messaging that it creates in our minds, could be really dangerous. So we have to be very careful of that.

And I think a lot of it comes down to if you've defined what's important to you, or if you're allowing others to define what's important to you.

So for example, I'll give you a personal story. At the time of this episode taping, I'm 41 years old.

And I know in my early thirties, early to mid thirties FOMO was something that was really gripping who I was as an individual. I had a good job.

I was pretty successful in my early thirties, which, early thirties is still very young by the way.

And I was making good money, and had a good job and all of those things, but I personally at that moment, in that time of my life, I define success strictly around money.

Money was what I looked at as the barometer of what was good and what wasn't. And I saw other people around me making more money.

I saw people that maybe at one point in time were considered colleagues of mine that were in better financial situations.

And I saw friends that were making significant amounts of more money than I was.

And honestly speaking, it killed me inside.

I hated it.

I was, yeah, I was happy for my friends that were doing well and being able to take care of their families or whatever the case may be.

I was not happy with the fact that I couldn't provide the things that maybe I saw other people providing.

And it really gripped me. It really affected who I was and what was going on in my life.

And it was not healthy.

It made me erratic in my decision-making.

It made me erratic in my home life.

It made me erratic in just the way my emotions ran up and down because, it was pretty clear I'm a wear my heart on my sleeve type of guy, and it was probably pretty obvious to my wife and those around me, like when I was having a good day and when I wasn't having a good day.

And oftentimes, seeing something that brought on FOMO to me was damaging to those around me and myself.

But as I started to manage my life in a more effective way, I started to define what success meant to me. I started define what was really important, and I really landed on faith and family was the most important thing to me.

So then everything I did after that was compared against how does this fall into what I think success is?

If I thought success was living the life I wanted to live with my family, where does this fall into it?

And if it didn't fall into what I thought was important and what I define success as I just didn't do it and it didn't affect me that way anymore.

And again, I know it seems like I'm just like flipping a switch and telling you a story and I'm like, "Oh, all you gotta do is this."

And it's easy.

It's not easy.

But what you have to do is you have to address it.

And that's what I did. And that's when I really felt like my success started to become, really high because I just put everything in those buckets.


And it's something that we'll talk about at the takeaway end of this.

But certainly something we need to look at.

But from FOMO, there's also a by-product, which is following.

I'll define this a little better. I mean like people that just blatantly follow others blindly.

If you're in the business world and you've seen people maybe they're not trying to emulate folks they're flat out like ripping off what others say and do and making it as their own.

There's not many original thoughts that are out there anymore.

I'll oftentimes read a book or listen to a podcast, recently on some of my social media, I've been diving deep into Craig Groeschel's Leadership Podcast, I think it's phenomenal.

And some of his ideas I will repurpose and share with my followers because I think it's really important because there's a ton of really smart people out there.

But then there's others that just follow because they're so afraid that their own original ideas and their own original thoughts are not going to be good enough, that they just do these things and rip them on their own.

Whether it's Gary V., who I'm a fan of, Mark Cuban, or Heather Monahan, or Sarah Blakely.

These are all like wonderful entrepreneurs.

People that have just, had tons of success, are super active on social media, but they're their own individuals.

You can want to emulate some of the things that they do.

You want to learn from some of the things that they do, but you certainly don't want to be a copycat.

You don't want to just blindly follow, because it's oftentimes shows how inauthentic it can be, or how you're being when you're just blindly following people.

There's nothing wrong with emulating people, ripping directly from others is not what you want.

And I think oftentimes what happens is when we have this fear of missing out our bodies and our mind is just okay, "I'm just going to do exactly what that person's doing.

And I'm going to really hope and really pray that it's going to make me successful."

And that's just not the way it is.

It worked for those people.

But again, success is an individual thing.

It's an individual definition and you have to define that consistently, and I'd say daily, you need to make the choice every day to succeed.

We need to make sure everything's in line with what you want to do.

When you define your success, you then make a choice daily.

And then you have to be content with whatever that decision was.

If you're in a situation where you're saying, for my business, we need to be in a cost cutting mode, or we need to be very tight with our money because we have these goals by the end of the year to spend X or to purchase X or to invest in something that you're looking to invest in.

If you start to have that fear of missing out, if you just change course immediately, it not only hurts the plan you're on, but it derails you from that plan that you're on.

And it's going to put you on another path that you have to start all over on.

So not only are you losing time, you're losing money.

And oftentimes you could be losing respect of others because you were becoming a erratic in your decision-making.

So you have to be content with the decisions that you make.

And again, that doesn't mean that they can't change.

It doesn't mean that your success does not evolve.

It doesn't mean that you can't change things.

It just means that you have to go through that process of understanding what it is and you can't let others define or hijack that success for you.

We talked about that a lot last week.


So when it comes to just some takeaways when it comes what can you do to combat these feelings that happen when you have FOMO, when you're so worried about what everyone else is doing, what can you do?

We talked about that.

Define your success.

Sit down and define what success means to you personally and professionally, and then become laser-focused on achieving that success daily.

Wake up every day and choose to succeed in whatever you individually choose.

That comes down to understanding personally, what's going on in your head, what stirring up in your heart, and what's happening in your home.

Your success should be looked at through those lenses.

If social media gets you derailed on a daily basis it may be time to set healthy limits.

I have a 14 year old at home.

She has an iPhone.

I can control her iPhone.

She hates that, but I don't allow her to have social media.


Because she's 14 years old and I don't want that consistent comparison.

I have a 14 year old brain worrying about what other people are doing and, living their best life and all that type of stuff.

And her think that she's not good enough or she's missing out.

I want to continue to help build her up in the right way.

And we as adults need to do the same thing.

We need to set healthy limits, like just mindless scrolling.

And by the way, I've done it.

I may have even done it this week.

You just get lost and you scroll, but you have to set healthy limits with that.

You have to understand how you control your success.

So set healthy limits.

Prepare yourself daily with being organized and intentional.

I'm a big calendar guy.

I'm one of those guys where if it's not on my calendar, I'll blindly miss something.

Which is good and bad, I think, but ultimately preparing yourself daily with being organized and intentional with a number of different things is important.

Whether it be professional time, but then also blocking out personal time.

I know some people are really big into journaling and reading and things like that.

We'll block out that time on your calendar and be able to do those things.

I know for me in the morning time there's certain things I have to do in the morning to get myself ready.

And blocking that time out is critically important.

Also, when you feel yourself maybe forced into that FOMO type of headspace, do your best to shift to gratitude.

Find ways to shift your mindset to the things that you have, to the things that are going on.

The positive, heart posture of what's happening in your life.

Change your activity when you feel FOMO coming on, change your activity to something that's going to put you in a more grateful type of situation, but also something that you enjoy.

In doing everything you can to understand your body and your mind because sometimes our minds play tricks on us, right?

Like sometimes our minds are the worst things ever.

You start to question yourself, you lack confidence, you doubt like all those things.

Your mind can just repeat that over and over again.

So you have to be prepared and understand that when those feelings come out, how do you switch?

And again, I am certainly not a psychologist.

I don't pretend to be one.

But I know from a standpoint of just living life, as an adult, as a father, as a husband, as a business owner, as a colleague, as a friend.

These are things that I've experienced myself, and there are certain ways that you can aid yourself to put yourself in the right type of situation when certain things like this are happening.


Let's recap this define your success, set healthy limits when it comes to viewing social media and engaging in certain things like that maybe we'll build up that fear of missing out.

Prepare yourself on a daily basis to be organized and to be intentional.

Make sure that you're doing those things on a daily basis that are in line with what you feel success is and what you feel are important to you.

And then finally shifting to gratitude.

When you feel that stuff going on, you shift to gratitude, change your activity, make sure that you're aware of those things.

There's so many other things that we could list out, but just to keep it simple and easy.

Again, we all feel this.

We all combat FOMO.

We all have some following natures in our bodies.

We're never going to be perfect at this, but we have to understand and be aware of the negative effects of these things.

So as we put a bow on this episode, obviously I want to thank you guys for listening.

Our whole goal here with The Company We Keep podcast is to just speak good stuff into your lives.

We want to help you have better balance in both business and life.

We want to help you define success.

We want to help you understand maybe the things that are happening out there in this world, and ways that you can shift to make sure that you feel more fulfilled.

You feel more successful and you feel more engaged in whatever you feel is important.

If you're looking to connect with me and maybe have some other additional questions or you want to keep the conversation going, I really encourage you to check out

That's my website.

There's tons of different ways to connect with me on that.

We would love to have continued conversation with you guys - we're four episodes in, we've got some more stuff coming up next week, talking about success and talking about fear.

Love if you could in these last four episodes, the first four episodes of The Company We Keep podcast, if you've enjoyed it, if you feel like you're getting something from it, I'd really appreciate it if you just hit that subscribe button.

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I'm honored that you decided to spend some time with me.

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You decided and chose mine. I appreciate that.

This is The Company We Keep podcast. My name is Jason Pearl, and until next time I'm out.