Consider a scenario wherein I want to learn XYZ & having Googled lots about it makes me quite well-versed with the rudimentary knowledge about that. Now the problem is that when I proceed with a book or a new course on XYZ topic, my brain says, “I am new to this topic, and shall not skip to the other portions (unknown)”, however, I am reasonably comfortable with the introductory or say, 30% of the initial chapters when reading the book, of course, via Googling. I have a FOMS (fear-of-missing-something) even in those familiar chapters or speak as, even for the known parts. Opposingly, I get a strong feeling that I should skip to the portions unknown, but, having been aware of the point discussed previously, like a dumbass, I listen to my brain defying how I feel about that. The matter of concern here is that, because time is extremely scarce, I want to do lots of other things but am a bit late on those things, due to the habit which wastes a lot of my precious-as-diamond time. I exactly want to know why the hell does this happen?

  • 2
    Not a philosophy question, but if you feel compulsions and experience obsessions, then you might be on the OC spectrum of which OCD and OCPD.
    – J D
    Commented Nov 9, 2021 at 20:46
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    This is a psychology and/or self-study question. But shouldn't fear-of-missing-something concerning the unknown parts (due to lack of time) outweigh that fear concerning the introductory parts? Why not simply use greater fear against lesser fear?
    – Conifold
    Commented Nov 10, 2021 at 0:22
  • @Conifold, if I may ask, can you explain a little briefly? Commented Jan 21, 2022 at 17:39
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    Your motivation in both cases is driven by cognitive dissonance, or specifically the desire to find and fill gaps in your knowledge. The difference in affect stems from the perceived rate of progress. Naturally, the parts more well known provide less filling of mental gaps, which creates additional dissonance (from sense of inefficiency) and hence more distress. Perhaps you can find solace in the probability that no matter how fast you go, no matter how many books and videos, there will be endless knowledge you will likely never have.
    – Michael
    Commented Jan 22, 2022 at 4:10
  • 1
    In other words, you are trying to finish something that cannot be finished, like drinking the ocean.
    – Michael
    Commented Jan 22, 2022 at 4:25


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