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JOMO or the Joy of Missing Out

JOMO or the Joy of Missing Out is defined as "pleasure derived from living in a quiet or independent way without feeling anxious that one is missing out on exciting or interesting events that may be happening elsewhere."

Can you imagine feeling like this at work?

Not being in that big meeting where everyone else currently is (even though you know it is little more than a status update or box-ticking exercise). Have a quick look at your diary - where can you increase your JOMO score?

HINT: if you look at a meeting that bores you but stresses you to think of missing it, then that’s a good place to start.

It would seem obvious that this is an issue in toxic organisations, but weirdly it’s also a thing in companies where people place great value on being nice to each other. They don’t want to upset people by leaving them out, and once invited, people feel they must go.

Meeting attendance can give the illusion of importance, busyness or doing the right thing when none of those things might be true.

The bottom line is if you feel unsettled about not going to a meeting that you:

  1. don’t want to be at

  2. know you don’t need to be at

  3. can easily catch up on if you really need to, and possibly,

  4. bores you to death to even consider being there,

then you might want to think about how secure / grounded / clear you feel at work.

Wait, I can stop going to meetings?

In a recent survey, Drum asked a department of people when they got their ‘day job’ done (i.e. when they weren’t in meetings). Over 60% said evenings and weekends.

I’m thinking that’s not how they genuinely want to spend their time and is possibly not where they are making their best decisions. People need time in the day to do the work they were hired for. JOMO is one way to start thinking differently about what they do with their time.

It takes courage to be counter cultural and stop going to the meetings and gatherings that don’t genuinely serve you and your role. And you might get it wrong and genuinely miss out on some stuff. If it feels worth the risk to see what you can get your JOMO score to, others might just follow suit.


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