ILLUMINATION
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ILLUMINATION

“Am I Wasting My Chances?”: On Entrepreneurship and FOMO

In this day and age, it’s quite common for people to be concerned if they lack an entrepreneurial mindset

Photo by Sigmund on Unsplash

Let’s indulge in a little mind game, shall we? If someone asks you what are some of the most popular topics and subjects nowadays, what would you say? Perhaps part of the answer will include wellness, mental health, finance, lifestyle, etc. But if we have to narrow things down to more professional-oriented subjects, then what would you say?

I bet many of you will immediately hear yourself point out topics such as “entrepreneurship”, “leadership”, “management”, “professional growth”, etc.

It’s no wonder why these very topics emerge in anyone’s mind from the get-go. In this day and age, those are indeed some of the most widely discussed subjects and, certainly, there is a reason behind it — nowadays, virtually anyone has the opportunity to at least try to become an entrepreneur, a manager, or a leader. Information regarding this is considered quite valuable by everyone expressing a desire to step into the world of business.

I couldn’t help but wonder how this change of professional scenery (back in the days the majority of people were employees for life, while today every employee has the chance to try and establish a business of their own) affects all those people who are just happy working for someone else or are still too early on the embarked journey toward professional happening.

Is it possible for some people to be experiencing FOMO regarding entrepreneurship?

We are equally free to be both employees or entrepreneurs — yet, how many of us feel we’re missing out big time?

I’ve stated numerous times that there’s nothing wrong with being an employee. Quite on the contrary, actually.

We all know that businesses of all kinds (big, small, enterprises, successful, or not so much) need in fact employees who will lend their expertise for salary in order to keep pushing the company forward. It’s only natural for all CEOs and managers to truly cherish and appreciate their employees since they are the fuel the business’s engine needs on a daily basis.

But perhaps sometimes the employees themselves tend to lack self-appreciation.

Some days ago I was having coffee during my lunch hour in a bar nearby my office. I overheard a conversation in a group seated two tables away. There was this guy going into detail about his fresh business idea! He was overly excited to share with his peers his initial ideas, goals, and potential business plan that could help him fulfill this new professional endeavor he had in mind. Quite inspirational, if you ask me — there’s always this feeling of fulfillment whenever we overhear a young person getting their s**t together in terms of self-development and professional growth.

The other participants in the conversation were surely expressing interest in what he had to say, but there was this other guy who looked somewhat quiet, and anxious, with body language who screamed how uncomfortable he might have been feeling. I’m well aware that I may be rewriting this whole story — this boy might have been facing personal issues, may have just ended a relationship, etc. There could be gazillion reasons why he looked so uncomfortable in the setting, but an assumption crossed my mind: What if he was an employee trying to figure out whether he’s missing out on life because of his lack of interest in entrepreneurship?

Since so many people nowadays are trying to adopt the entrepreneurial mindset, I believe it’s a common thing for others (the ones with the employee mindset) to feel slightly inadequate in a world where the hot topic is constantly about leadership and executing business ideas. It’s like people often forget their own value the moment they begin to compare themselves to others.

Part of the problem may be the fact that rarely do we say things like: “Hey, Tim is an awesome employee!” We are far more willing to praise Charles there, who has just managed to establish a startup. But the truth is that Tim and Charlie need one another — Tim needs Charlie in order to get employed, while Charles needs Tim in order to add an incredible expert to his team.

FOMO is real — it’s just we rarely think about it in terms of entrepreneurship

Photo by Alexandra Gorn on Unsplash

With the outburst of social media and the smartphone era, we’ve come up with a term that greatly describes the overall discomfort and anxiety we tend to feel whenever our phones are out of reach.

FOMO stands out for “Fear Of Missing Out” and describes the fear of missing out on exciting events and happenings just around the corner merely because you’re not present.

It usually correlates with social media since its essence has to do with news, photos, or even gossip disappearing fast due to everyone posting stuff all the time. If you’re not constantly on your phone, it’s quite likely you’ll miss a gazillion of new posts and stories from people you follow.

This phenomenon has caused millions of people to be constantly glued to their smartphone screens.

But if social media has been proven to cause us FOMO, can we say that other affluents can cause one as well?

There’s a high chance for an excellent employee to start feeling they are missing out on success and prosperity while talking to someone with an entrepreneurial mindset as much as it’s possible for an average-looking person to get intimidated by the Instagram body goals.

What’s even worse is if the employee generally feels great about themselves and this FOMO thing comes up only when exposed to entrepreneurs or big-shot managers.

But, at the same time, this tends to be the employee’s biggest weapon — only if they realized they feel this way under the influence of others, not because of dissatisfaction coming from within.

What can be done in order to lessen the FOMO effect regarding entrepreneurship?

  • people should ask themselves more often whether they feel happy with themselves truly (out of comparison to others)
  • the sooner you stop comparing yourselves to others, the better for your overall mental health and state of mind
  • an employee can always try executing a business idea and check how this activity affects them — sometimes the things we believe are enticing turn out to be just not our cup of tea
  • by all means, continue surrounding yourself with forward-thinking individuals with an entrepreneurial mindset but for all the right reasons — instead of comparing your success to there’s, use this communication to influence other specters of life such as problem-solving, gaining energy, and being fearless of change or obstacles along the way
  • focus on your own path towards development and growth since we all grow daily, regardless of our occupation or job preference
  • whenever you get a job right, don’t miss to congratulate yourself — even share the good news with other people
  • find your inner reason for why you have chosen a certain professional path

To wrap things up

We live in a world where we have the chance to constantly compare ourselves to others. While this is not essentially a bad thing, we should be cautious about the reasons we are doing it.

If you are content and happy with your job or your life choices, then it’s truly unnecessary to experience FOMO only because someone else is nailing the entrepreneurial scene. Remember that how you’re feeling is way more important than how you think others see you. More often than not, others already see all your strong qualities, skills, and abilities. Perhaps it’s time for you to get on track.

Hi, guys, I’m Ivan and I’m here to share with all of you my passion for words, great content, entrepreneurship, personal development, management, hobbies, and everything in between.

I serve as the CEO of my WordPress Development Agency @ Vipe Studio where I have the pleasure to lead a diverse, wonderful and energetic team of experts. Feel free to contact me anytime — I would love to exchange new ideas and inspire each other!

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Ivan Popov

Ivan Popov

i was once an athlete. then a journalist. now i am a ceo of vipe studio. still running marathons though.