Why Do People Experience the Fear of Missing Out (FoMO)? Exposing the Link Between the Self and the FoMO Through Self-Construal


JOURNAL OF CROSS-CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY, vol.50, no.4, pp.524-538, 2019 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 50 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.1177/0022022119839145
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.524-538
  • Eskisehir Osmangazi University Affiliated: Yes


With the advent of social media, it is getting easier to be informed about different aspects of individuals' lives. Therefore, experiencing fear of missing out (FoMO), which is characterized by the desire to stay continually connected with others, is becoming increasingly widespread among people. The concept of FoMO has drawn considerable attention from researchers; however, past research has yet to expose the link between the self-concept and FoMO. Drawing on the self-construal theory, we argue that the construal of the interdependent self underlies FoMO. In other words, the current article proposes that people with interdependent self-construal are more vulnerable to FoMO. In Study 1, we conducted online survey research with 566 MTurk participants, 287 U.S. participants and 279 Indian participants. In Study 2, we conducted an experiment with two conditions with 188 MTurk participants residing in the United States. The findings from the two studies provide consistent and convergent findings that FoMO is positively associated with interdependent self-construal. Implications are discussed and further research suggestions are provided.