FOMO while travelling can really lead down a rabbit hole of self destruction. This past week I travelled from winter weather (chilly but sunny) to a self development self love conference in SUNNY New Port Beach California. A travel tip I live by is hit up the grocery store for provisions as Hangry doesn’t just happen at home.
Off I walked to Whole Foods, which is located in a very posh, very beautiful place called Fashion Island. BAM it hit me, that itch, all I could see while walking there were these beautiful patios, filled with beautiful people, sitting drinking. I haven’t had that itch in a while (it’s been winter here) and it was a sinking feeling.
I used to like Whole Foods concept, but by the time I was finished buying my provisions and had to cruise by the Booze Section, my thoughts were heading into a negative spiral, Whole Foods doesn’t care about your health or they wouldn’t be carrying Booze. By the time I got out of Whole Foods I had a full on hate going for the store. ( I call it Whole Paycheck seriously who shops at this store regularly, so overpriced, especially now considering Amazon owns it) as you can guess I was even pissier. I’ve been plastered by the lure of cocktails from the moment I touched down in the sun. FOMO kicks in I think I am the only one in California, not sitting on a patio drinking, except it’s about 1pm on Thursday, but my rational brain has not kicked in on this.
Friday Night the first night of the conference begins and I chose not to purchase the VIP option of this conference as it is a Wine Night, I made this choice months ago, the friends I am with are all going and the FOMO is beating on my brain, again I am the only one (which is not true) not drinking while travelling. I’m exhausted from sightseeing and walking, I’m emotionally tired from the alcohol vibes, I want to sleep, but I can’t. I’m having serious FOND (Fear of Not Drinking). Even though my friends have been great ( they aren’t sober people, but also don’t have drinking issues) it’s always the voice inside my head that’s the loudest.
I sat and cried and when I did so I also had a thought, WHY am I here?
Not here physically with a drinking problem, but why am I here in California. Why did I travel to this event? Why did I spend all this money?
My mom always taught me travelling was the best form of education, and a lot of vacations I have drank away and been so hungover I didn’t want to do anything the next day, but sit lay by a pool or in bed and sleep. I did not go on the tours booked, boat rides offered, exploring, or even out of the hotel, due to hangovers, I would miss the days.
“You can drink anywhere, why would you drink while travelling? The reason to travel isn’t to drink, but to explore, be curious, soak in what you are there for”
This one though changed my entire trip, it ended the FOMO, it ended all my feelings about drinking and the romanticizing of the drinking. I am not hear to drink, I’m hear to love myself and be a part of an event of 500 women and to recharge, to connect and to learn.
I had this realization once I asked myself the above, I wasn’t missing out, I was gaining the most from this experience I could by being present.
This past year I have had the privilege to travel extensively sober and honestly have been the best travel of my life.
So instead of FOMO and feeling sorry for myself I looked at what I got from this trip was far more valuable than any cocktail could ever offer me.