In certain parts of the world, people are beginning to socialize again. And as invitations to parties and events start to circulate, so does talk about the resurgence of FOMO, or fear of missing out. The term is common in the U.S., but most of us are familiar with the associated feelings—the anxious pit in your stomach when you think others are having a good time without you.

But here’s the thing: Apparently, even during the pandemic, FOMO never really went away. According to a recent study, for some people fear of missing out on social activities has been replaced with a fear of missing out on online activities, such as concerts and other virtual gatherings and events. As a result, they’re experiencing associated psychological and health issues, such as poor sleep, less productivity, and loss of focus.

Whether you’re able to start going out-and-about again, or you’re still practicing social distancing, FOMO might be affecting your well-being. Use these three tips from Rachel Merson, a clinical psychologist with the Boston University Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders, to help you gain perspective:

1. It’s natural to want to fit in.

You know the feeling: You see a smiling photo of familiar faces gathered around the table at a local restaurant and feel a pang of envy straight out of the middle-school cafeteria. Or perhaps your friends are talking about a free virtual concert from a favorite artist that you missed, and you wonder why no one told you about the concert in advance.

“There’s a feeling of being left out,” Merson says. But this is a universal reaction, she continues, and there’s nothing inherently wrong or weak about yearning to be included. People naturally want to fit in and be liked. Accept your feelings as valid, not a teenage relic.

Tip: Stress can result from the tension between what is and what you believe should be. Learn how to address it in this post: “Shut the Door on Your ‘Shoulds.’”

2. Challenge anxious thoughts. 

With FOMO, it’s easy to tell yourself exaggerated, often false stories: “I wasn’t invited because nobody likes me, and now I have no friends,” or “I need to attend my weekly online reading club or no one will invite me to the next meeting.” When we’re anxious, we tend to “catastrophize and become overly focused on negative outcomes” that aren’t necessarily realistic, Merson says.

Challenge these thought spirals. When they strike, ask: How likely is that the thing I’m worrying about will happen? What if it is true or does happen? How bad will I feel? What’s the worst-case scenario?

Merson gives a personal example. She heard about an outdoor party at a neighbor’s house, and she wasn’t invited. At first she was miffed, and then she realized: “How big of a deal is this? Do I ever have gatherings where I might just have one or two people over and not the whole neighborhood?” The answer, of course, is yes.

Tip: You can use Trap It, Map It, Zap It to get ahead of thoughts that aren’t serving you well.

3. Re-evaluate your priorities. 

The past 16 months presented us with opportunities to make values-based—as opposed to pressure-based—decisions about our time. “For some people, the pandemic allowed them to feel a little bit more comfortable with their own company, because they didn’t have a choice,” Merson says. “I think that’s a really positive thing.”

People took a step back and thought about their commitments, she says, as well as the ways that they were spending their time. Then they reevaluated their priorities.

The next time FOMO strikes, whether for a virtual or in-person event, Merson suggests asking yourself: What do I really want to be doing? What is consistent with my values? What feels important to me?

You can also ask: What do you enjoy? How do you prioritize and zone in on your passions? What wouldn’t you miss one bit?

Maybe your interests have evolved over the past year and a half. That means you’re not missing out, you’re simply growing.

Tip: Set yourself up to connect with positivity and purpose by starting the day with intention. Try “3 Questions to Start Your Day.”