We’ve all fallen victim to FOMO (fear of missing out). The crippling uncertainty that illuminates every aspect of the unknown, knowing that you are being left in the dark, by your friends that are clearly having a great time without you. On the flip side, there is another form of FOMO that is not quite as obvious: death.
Thanatophobia is the term used for people who fear death chronically. In other words: it’s conscious. It’s always present. The Fear Of Death (FOD), however, is less conspicuous. It is also something I’ve recently been interested in (I was rushed to the hospital last weekend for not being able to breath which exponentially amplified my recent interest in this obscene topic we are all going to face one way or another).
So I’m going to get right into it. I have a theory: FOMO is on the rise due to social media, therefore, FOD is on the rise because death is perceived as another form of FOMO.
Here me out.
We are becoming existentially afraid of death because we perceive the loss of all the fun shit we have lined up or we think may happen to us. Looking at Social Media gives us FOMO which increases FOD.
But we forget one thing: death is just a shift. It’s the next phase we all share in common. It’s actually rather liberating. It’s easier said than done, but knowing we all share this sacred experience we can get going with the fucking thing (at least for me) we all put off: living.
There are thousands of people who have written on the topic better than I have. Brainpickings (my favourite blog) has some great articles for a start. And I recently watched this short discussion with Jason Silva on death which I found absolutely fucking fascinating.
The Solutions to FOMO and FOD
Here are are a couple of things that may help you out if you’re as cooked as me and are tackling some of life’s bigger questions (or are just interested in how to live 2% better):
Stop being consumed by Social Media. I’m not saying don’t use it — what I’m saying is don’t be consumed by it. Craft your Social Media use carefully. My Intermittent Social Media Fasting protocol which may help. Extra credit it you’re creating content instead of always mindlessly consuming it.