One of the strongest psychological motivating factors to get humans moving is the fear of missing out. The idea that everybody is getting something good and because that good thing is so popular that the good thing is slowly disappearing that combination of effects will make us want to get that thing more than ever.
Usually this presents itself in the form of market bubbles, when everyone and their sisters is buying this, this idea bitcoin or whatever, the latest stock. When everybody’s making money. Warren Buffett had a very clever way a very easy way of identifying market bubbles.
Probably the most famous person of all time that lost their ass in a market bubble was Isaac Newton. He invested in the South Sea Company before he became a bubble.
Isaac Newton – Smartest Man on Earth
Isaac Newton was a smart guy. He invented calculus, he discovered gravity and he wrote the first book of physics ever. But he got in this South Sea trading company early, he got out when he doubled his money. But then later everyone else started getting in this South Sea company as it became a bubble.
One of the more interesting places where the fear of missing out presents itself is in Christian mythology. The idea, according to a lot of Christian belief systems, is that at the end of time Jesus is going to come back and he’s going to choose who has been good and he’s going to choose who has been bad.
The people that have been good Christians will go with him and experience the kingdom of heaven for eternity, but the people that haven’t been good Christians they are going to be left behind and be left out of the kingdom of heaven for eternity.
End Times FOMO
This sounds exactly like the fear of missing out. The question is is this Christian idea of the end times, of the final judgment, is this just a mythology because we have this instinctive biological fear of missing out or did God create us in his image and He purposely gave us this instinctive fear of missing out to prepare us for the final in times when they come?
If it is true that we are indeed made in God’s image and Jesus will come and make a final judgment and if you do not believe this then this could be the most horrific decision of your life.
On the other hand, if you believe that it’s truly an instinct but just on the safe side you decided to be a good Christian and follow the rules of Jesus just in case the end times do come, and they are real then you wouldn’t really lose that much.
Safe Bets Are Better
This is kind of a classic argument in favor of religion. If you’re wrong the results could be catastrophic but if you believe in religion and you follow a religion and you’re wrong the results won’t be that bad.
On the other hand it could be a lot worse because if it is just a biological desire to be motivated by the fear of missing out that means that the thing that were missing out on is irrelevant. The fear of missing out is content independent.
For example if everyone in the world is having all kinds of promiscuous sex if everyone in the world is killing each other if everyone in the world is doing all kinds of evil deeds that will still trigger the fear of missing out.
The Work of Satan?
It could be that the fear of missing out has been put there by Satan to tempt us away from doing the word of God. On the other hand it could be that you have to choose for yourself. You have to think for yourself. You have to choose independently of the madness of crowds which could lead you insane if you’re not careful because.
Nothing is as important as being able to think for yourself because you can’t think for yourself if you become obedient blindly obedient to the fear of missing out you could be led horrifically astray.
It is your own intellect that you need to rely on to decide if what is compelling you to action is based only on that deep instinctive fear of missing out or if you have an intellectual and logical rational reason for doing what you’re doing.
When FOMO Hits It’s Too Late
After you’ve made a decision especially if it is one born of the fear of missing out it could be the worst decision you’ve ever made and it could be that God gave us this instinctive fear of missing out to make sure we only do the right thing by careful choice and not just because of instinctive programming.
When you come to the conclusion that this is a very powerful force of human behavior, that once your mind-body system is overcome with the fear of missing out it’s very hard to resist that action especially of everybody you know is taking the same action.
That is kind of when independent thought vanishes and we voluntarily assimilate into the madness of the crowd.
Even Newton Got Sucked In
After Isaac Newton got in and got out doubling his money, after all of his friends started to get in and after all of his friends started to make a lot of money he couldn’t resist. Isaac Newton himself gave into the fear of missing out. He got in near the top of the market bubble but then he got out way down the bottom after it had crashed and he had lost everything.
Even someone with the sheer strength of intellect as Isaac Newton was not immune to the madness of crowds.
Warren Buffett said when your idiot neighbor is getting rich that is a guarantee that there is a market bubble happening. When that’s happening that can be the most important time to not jump in but that can also be the most difficult time to avoid jumping in.
FOMO Is Advertising Gold
If you’re an advertiser, if you’re a marketer and you can create a legitimate fear of missing out for your product you can sell that product to millions of people and they will buy this product without even knowing what it is.
So long as you generate a realistic a believable sense of missing out surrounding your product using false scarcity and social proof and authority you can sell millions of dollars with a product without anyone even needing to know what the product is or what it does.
Mind Persuasion has plenty of books and courses to teach you how to speak hypnotically and persuasively.