Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) & Debt

Katie Weber

Aug 6, 2020

The fear of missing out (FOMO) is massive now. A new Credit Karma survey of 1,050 Canadians aged 19-39 shows half of young adults have spent money they didn't have and gone into debt in order to keep up with their peers. While 35% said they didn’t feel comfortable telling their friends “no” when friends suggest an activity or event they cannot afford. It doesn't have to be like this, below are tips to help reduce the fear of missing out and a closer look at why young Canadians are overspending.

According to the survey the number 1 thing driving people to overspend is food, followed by clothing, travel and electronics or more permanent things like tattoos and housing. Social media plays a big part in the urge to overspend, 40% said they spend money at least once a year to post about it on social media. While the need to keep up or fit in may never go away, it shouldn’t come at the cost of your financial stability.

Here are some tips and suggestions to avoid FOMO and stay on budget.

Be honest

I cannot stress this one enough, being honest with your friends about your financial situation and what you cannot afford will make a huge difference. Likely your friends might be in the same boat as you and can’t afford to keep up with it either, or they will understand and make suggestions that better fit your budget.

Suggest Low cost or free activities 

There are always amazing free or low-cost events and activities happening. Look for some online activities and make a day of it or plan something fun inside like movie nights or potlucks. Time with friends doesn't always have to be had by going out.

Plan how you pay

Ditch that credit card, it is easier to overspend when you pay with credit rather than debit or cash. Leave your credit card at home and try using other forms of payment, that way you have a fixed budget and are less likely to overspend.

Do a social media cleanse 

Cleaning up your account by unfollowing brands and influencers who don’t post content that match your goals, whether they only post brand deals and ad’s or make you feel inadequate. Unfollowing them will not only help you financially it will also help mentally.

Unsubscribe from email list 

I know we all love an email with a good deal, but those emails will tempt you to make unnecessary purchases that you don’t need. Doing a purge of brands will help your wallet and reduce the clutter of your inbox.

 No matter what, debt brought on by FOMO is not worth it, look closer at your spending habits and decide for yourself if you are buying for you or buying to show off to your friend. Try out the tips above and see if they help with your spending while still allowing you to be a part of things.