What it might really mean when you think you’re missing out.

Ever feel you’re missing out?

I used to feel like this often, usually when people were in buzzy groups, or applying for great jobs, and it would eat away at me, taking up so much energy.

I just wanted NOT to miss out. So where I could, I joined in, which could be exhausting or else I just felt fed up because it was “alright for them” to have fun, go for a shiny new job while I stayed stuck… (yes I was holding myself stuck, but I didn”t know that then)

Here’s what I didn”t do.

I didn’t stop to think about what I REALLY wanted.

I never asked myself, quietly, what would fill ME up? What would I choose if I didn’t buy into the societal expectation that bigger and louder is better? That the only way to grow your role is go up, not get out?

It took sick leave after a knee operation and literally time to think, to help me see that I wasn’t living or working in a way that was right for me, at all. I thrived on that solitude. I rested, I created (quilts mainly, my sewing machine leg unaffected!) and I dreamed.

As a direct result of that time out, that re-evaluation, I quit my job, we moved house and we drew up plans for our new home; a project I”d then go on to manage on my own, quietly, creatively and competently, for the next four years.

And not once* in all that time did I feel I was missing out. Because I was doing what mattered to me, what filled me up. I’d realised that I didn’t even want the things I used to “miss”.

*ok let”s be real. Of course some of those feelings still came up. And still do. The missing out, and the envy. Every now and again they really bite me on the ass and it hurts (usually in my autumn, go figure #cycletracking)

But here’s what I learned about ‘missing out’…

Firstly, that I’m an introvert. Which, yes, comes with THE best superpowers, but also sometimes a feeling of not being enough. Sometimes I felt I was missing out because I didn’t find it fun or rewarding to be in a loud crowd, seek adrenaline or fight for air-time in a meeting. Now that I understand my introversion better, I truly value all that I bring to the world, quietly and courageously, along with helping my clients to do the same.

… and I also learned…

That the feelings of missing out, the envy, and the unfavourable comparison always bring me a message, if I take the time see it, instead of spiralling into despair and escaping into crisps, wine & Netflix.

In those moments I AM missing something in my world. Something is out of balance for me.

Often it’s when I’m living out of kilter with my values, or I’m ready for the next stage of my growth (and not taking those next steps), or I’m not including enough fun, exercise or fresh air in my week… what I’ve learned for sure is that it’s almost always not the answer to go after whatever I see in the other person’s world!

So I invite you to check in, see what it might really mean, when you think you’re missing out…

🌟when you think of times you felt you were missing out, what comes up, really, if you stay in the discomfort for a little while?
🌟and if you were to really notice what triggered the feeling, what does it tell you that you might you need more of in your life?

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