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Is FOMO Sabotaging Your Budget?

Are you always the first person to buy the latest gadget or front row tickets to that amazing concert? Do you find yourself overpaying for items at auction or buying everything on the discount table at the EOFY sale? If yes, buyer beware: you could be suffering from FOMO!

FOMO can feel like your worst nightmare when your credit card statement rolls in and your bills are stacking up. Your “Fear Of Missing Out” could be actively sabotaging your savings goals and financial independence.

If your spending habits are driven by ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunities, you shouldn’t be surprised that you are finding it hard to budget and keep your money in your pocket. In fact, FOMO will drive you to make some extremely crazy decisions, which may look similar to any of the following ‘symptoms’;

  • Booking a last minute holiday at a ‘discounted’ price

  • Engaging in a bidding war to purchase a home at auction, which is grossly overpriced

  • Spoiling your children with electronic devices and new fads because their friends have everything

  • Spending $1000 on a jacket because it’s the last one in stock

  • Buying designer items that ‘everyone’ raves about

  • Buying the shiny new vehicle just because the salesman says that other parties are interested

  • Buying a “limited edition” ANYTHING!

If this looks like a familiar pattern to you, it may be time for you to reassess and review your financial goals. You may need to firmly slap yourself and ask the following questions;

  • Is ‘missing out’ really that disastrous and heart breaking?

  • Will you have the chance to purchase something similar at a later date?

  • Is this purchase something you can include in your budget and save for?

  • Will your social relationships or personal wellbeing be effected if you do miss out?

  • Will this purchase sabotage your short term and long term financial goals?

  • Is there an alternative that won’t dramatically impact your budget?

  • Will you survive without it?

REMEMBER: Self awareness is an important part of the cure!

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Last updated 2020

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