Suffering from – No…..enjoying JOMO

Is it possible that as we grow older, we are actually glad to miss events ? There is nothing fun about hearing all about a wedding or a birthday or any other happy event when an entire friendship group has attended it this past weekend. You can’t participate or comment even if you desperately want to. All you can do is nod politely and smile.

Is it possible that as we grow older, we are actually glad to miss events   ? There is nothing fun about hearing all about a wedding or a birthday or any other happy event when an entire friendship group has attended it this past weekend. You can’t participate or comment even if you desperately want to. All you can do is nod politely and smile.

There are situations; however, one is actually glad that he/she missed whatever was planned. With the advent of social media, there is no shortage of getting an update on what everyone is doing everywhere, ALL . THE. TIME.  A recent phenomena that Addis Ababans can’t miss either is that there are so many networking, learning and fun activities both during weekdays and weekends. If you asked me 10 years ago, I’d have said that I’d go to all of the events available – every single week. Well… there weren’t as many anyways.

Nowadays, there are multiple events almost on a daily basis and we are constantly bombarded with   e-vites, FB event notifications , radio plugs and the occasional old fashioned text to attend. I’m sure at least half of these are useful or interesting or both.  Still I happily miss most of them. In the old days, I’d have lamented it if I missed any of these events. Now, ha, it’s a different story. I’m actually glad to simply spend an hour on social media –or two ; sometimes three – scrolling through newsfeeds , tweets and event summaries.

Until recently, I thought this was only applicable to me. That was until I confided in a close friend that this was my issued. Surprise! surprise! He was in the same boat as me.  He was actually far along the road and had a term for it. He said what we have is called JOMO- Joy of Missing out.  The opposite of FOMO. Simple Definition for the uninitiated – the feeling you get when you are glad you are not attending this or that. And it is definitely a trend among Generation Xers while Millennial and Gen – Z/Gen i- or the unnamed generation ( as they’d like to be called) are happily updating their status.

 So this got me thinking. How is this applicable to organizations with multi generations working together? Doesn’t this call for differentiated approaches when it comes to senior management trying to come up with team building activities? Or reward and recognition for individuals or teams? While the traditional approach would have been to organize events centered along the theme of everyone likes fun activities, done together and documented for the world to see; with a permanent record on the internet- times have changed. It’s time to find out what employees would value – without any judgment or generalization – including the likes of the above regarding generations.

It is fun, though, when I can kick back, relax and think about nothing else but having fun at home curled up with a good book and a warm cup of tea- no matter how exciting the weekend plan someone else makes may sound …far…far…away.

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