Girl alone with Mobile Phone

I am aware that there seems to be a problem with children wanting to be on a screen all of the time and they are worrying about what will happen if they aren’t. To them, there is a danger of not being ‘in’ on every conversation and feeling the fear of missing out. These children carry their phones and constantly check if someone else has added to a conversation that is going on or updated their status. They don’t want to miss a thing! I think you know what I am talking about. It is resulting in children staying up late so that they don’t miss anything and is creating tired pre-teens and teens. I am sure this has a knock on effect to their mood and eating pattern too.

I feel, through my work as a coach, that the main backbone of Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO) is self-esteem. If you have a child that is happy with who they are and is enjoying life then they would be less inclined about being part of the action, 24 hours a day. They would be engaged with their life off screen and have the confidence to know that it makes no difference to their friends if they are online or not. Yes, it would be nice for everyone to be chatting all together but life is not like that. Children have different agendas and schedules to each other.

If we could raise the self-esteem of these children then I think we would be half way there.  We also need to look at other ways to help your child if they have FOMO.

Eight Ways To Tackle Fear Of Missing Out

  1. The first step is for your child to admit/acknowledge that it is a problem.
  2. Children need to know that they don’t have to like everything their friends post or comment on every picture.
  3. Give them set times to use their phone or allow them to choose the time when they check it.
  4. Allow them to use social media but limit the time they are on it.
  5. Get children to limit the amount of conversations they are having – perhaps a couple of WhatsApp groups just with friends they see regularly.
  6. Encourage them to use their time doing other activities and interests.
  7. Role model phone and screen use. You can’t lecture your child if you’re also glued to your phone!
  8. If night time is a problem then have a family rule that phones go away in a set place at a set time.

Try these tips and your child will start to lose the Fear of Missing Out and gradually become less ‘addicted’ to their phone and other technology.

Have you experienced issues with children over-using tech and thinking they are missing out? How did you improve the problem or try to tackle it? I would love to hear from you. Leave a comment or talk to me via my social media channels.

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