How to deal with Author FOMO

As an author (or insert career title), you ever feel like others around you are zipping happily with buddies on jet skis and you’re paddling along on a little float ring?

Do you have FOMO — fear of missing out — on conferences, collaborations, promos, advice or discussions? On the flipside, do you hyperventilate just thinking about all that you could/should do…yesterday?

Take a deep breath. Just chill. Relax on your floatie. Close your eyes into the sun and snooze. Savor your author journey. Just a little summer metaphor I thought I’d share.

I don’t know how many times I have saved a post or sign-up so I could follow-up…and never get back to it again. I just get plain overwhelmed.

When I get all revved up and anxious, I turn off notifications from certain author Facebook groups. Sure, I might miss out on some collabs, but it’s okay. I can’t keep up with everything and I won’t. Life is too short obsessing over this stuff.

A lot of times, all the advice is conflicting anyway. The best thing to do is just to keep your head down, create the best book and put it out there.

Read on for several sweet romance authors’ advice on FOMO.

Lacy Andersen: I just try to tell myself that there will always be another one. Another conference, another collaboration project. And if I keep my eye on the prize (which to me is to have a successful publishing business), soon I will be able to do as many as I want.

Brittney Mulliner: It’s tough especially when you have another full-time job. Opportunities come and go so quickly and I miss them because I’m in meetings or on calls or don’t jump on Facebook for a while. I had to accept that me writing was the only thing I could control and focus on getting my next book out. One day I’ll be able to focus on the other things as my business is successful and I can quit the day job!

Audrey Rich: I have to tell myself that I can’t overcommit.

Jo Noelle: I keep a calendar right down to number of words per day. If I decide to take on a project, it has to fit on the calendar. If it doesn’t, it’s not the right time to do it.

Emma St. Clair: I have to remind myself of the ultimate goals I have and whether or not projects will really serve those goals.

Eliza Boyd: I focus on my end goals. I learned this in this HB90 course I took. If I’ve made my 90-day (quarterly) plan and what comes up isn’t on that list, I have to decide if it’s really going to get me where I want to go. If it’ll be more of a distraction, then I say no. If it’ll help propel me in a bigger way than I have planned for myself and that’s a good thing at the time, then I’m in.

Amy DeLuca: I’ve been trying to do ALL the things ALL the time and the HB90 course is helping me narrow my focus to what’s going to help me reach my goals.

Janelle Daniels: I used to feel this way about group projects, but then I was in some and decided my time is best spent elsewhere (more lucrative). However, the FOMO on a tribe or writing friendships really gets to me.

Gina Rishwain: I can feel that way but also understand it’s my life at present and perhaps in the future I will be able to attend conferences/get more involved in the writing community as the children (due with no. 2 later this year) get older.

Vivi Holt: I used to… lol. Now I miss most of them quite happily. I just tried them all, I think. I’ve been doing this for… hmmm… 4 years. I think they (conferences, collaborations) are good to do when you’re starting out, but after a certain point, they don’t help.

Lara Wynter: I hate that I can’t go to any of the great author conventions because I live on the other side of the world (Tasmania). But I comfort myself by knowing how terrified I’d be if I went anyway. FOMO vs FOP (Fear of People).

Dyanne Green: I also have FOP, but I would like to belong to an author tribe and develop more writing friendships.

Melissa Crosby: If it doesn’t benefit my writing or help me move forward, then I just wave and wish them a great time together.

Kathy Miles Wheeler: I feel this way about the national RWA (Romance Writers Association) conference this year. I just keep reminding myself that I allocated and prioritized my conference budget elsewhere. I’m trying to keep the business mindset.

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