The kitesurf bubble & FOMO – the Fear Of Missing Out

Kitesurfing is so much fun that for most of those who try it leads to addiction soon. But this addiction doesn’t necessarily simplify our everyday life, hehe!
Thinking all the time about how to get your next session as quick as possible and organizing your whole life around the sport often turns out in a huge challenge. A challenge that has huge impact not only to your personality and relationships but also into your work life, living situation and so much more.

So there are two terms I’m talking about in this article:  the “kitesurf bubble” and FOMO (have you ever heard of this?) – read more in the following!


A normal crazy kitesurf life

It took me long to overcome my inner resistance to write this article. Cause in my mind spiral there was always the thought “come on, that’s luxury problems, isn’t it kind of arrogant to write about such a topic?”
Well, I decided that this issue is worth to put it on the agenda. What I noticed that kitesurfing means so much to me that it isn’t always good for me – cause it took over my whole life. Hm, yes this is how it feels! And of course most impacts of this sport are positive ones – it makes me happy, it keeps me fit, it changed my lifestyle in an awesome way – but especially in the last months there are also some effects which are not so good.

Living in this “kitesurf bubble”, as I call it, sometimes makes me kind of blind for everything outside my kite life! 

(c) Helmut Fuchs/kitejoy

So now writing this article is also kind of therapy cause I want to get rid of the stress I’m putting on me, ha ha! And I’m also sure that there are some more kiters out there that got completely lost in their own kitesurf bubble … am I right?

Let’s talk about this topic to get aware of it – although I think we shouldn’t take it too serious cause it’s also part of the game, not only in kitesurfing but in all these kind of extreme sports.

P.S. Just to mention it – this topics probably will not concern those who are really traveling from kitespot to kitespot or who are living directly at a place where you can kite!


How I got (too) addicted to kitesurfing

I was really totally into the sport from the beginning on – my addiction started after the first few meters on the water. Since then my motto was: When the wind is calling, I must go. No matter the weather. No matter if there are any other events or dates, birthday parties or whatever – if it’s windy, I’m sorry, I can’t join.

No wonder that this behaviour leaded to problems in friendships with people who don’t kite. Of course it also forced me to change my work life, what I did. But even if I have so much freedom in my job situation – I work mainly as a freelance writer – after a certain time I felt like this wasn’t enough anymore. I have lots of time for traveling and I also have the privilege to plan a big part of my workload around the wind conditions. But even this wasn’t (or I admit: isn’t) enough.

I started to be stressed to plan all my life around kitesurfing, always checking the forecast for all the kitespots within reach – which is of course not the best for work motivation. Additionally I was sometimes really pissed off when it was windy but I couldn’t go cause I had to do a job.

(c) Helmut Fuchs/kitejoy

Kitesurfing and FOMO: The Fear Of Missing Out

And social media doesn’t make it easier, right? Always seeing others living directly on the spot or traveling the world and riding every day can really make you crazy if you are not that lucky and instead have to sit and watch. Even if you are on a spot but the wind doesn’t quite play ball and you know that meanwhile other kiters have a great session somewhere.

Don’t get me wrong, it isn’t about begrudging others their kite fun! Especially if it’s about your friends you feel happy for them. But still sometimes there might be this gnawing feeling of missing out on something big. Like when we were young and weren’t allowed to go to THIS special party … but ALL the others were there – and in your thoughts you missed the best evening ever that would have changed for sure your whole life. Damn! (Was never true.)

(c) Anja Fuchs/kitejoy

The social media dilemma

Have you ever heard of FOMO?  It’s a social anxiety known as Fear Of Missing Out. A phenomenon that becomes more and more widespread in the era of modern technologies and social media cause we are connected all the time. It defines the fear of having made a wrong decision and due to this missing a good opportunity or a satisfying event. Lots of people suffer from this – no wonder when you always see others that seem to have the perfect life, being always on the move, traveling to the most beautiful places … and having great kite sessions every day!

It’s easy to forget that Instagram and Facebook only show a very small part of reality – mostly the best part of it. I always have to smile when people tell me (which happens very often!) that they want to have my life cause they wonder how I manage it to travel the whole year without any break and to spend everyday kitesurfing. Cause then I have to tell them that (unfortunately!) this is not my real life – it’s just well placed social media content.

Ok, but how should they know – as I don’t post a pic of myself sitting in front of my Mac being frustrated with a deadline for an article (and aside checking five spots on Windfinder at least every ten minutes) neither a pic of me when I’m getting crazy on a spot without wind, suffering from a FOMO attack (hehe, yes might happen!).

(c) Helmut Fuchs/kitejoy

Getting out of the kitesurf bubble?

I have to laugh while writing these words cause it’s really quite a good therapy. Cause to be honest I’m still much too deep caught inside this kitesurf bubble! Don’t get me wrong: It’s not a problem at all to be a kite addict. As long as it’s good for you and doesn’t stress you too much! Which was definitely the case for me cause I was only living for the next session, acting like a heroine junkie in search of his next shot.

I wasn’t fully able to enjoy a day without wind, even at a beautiful place with my besties. Sometimes a day on the spot but without a session felt like a lost day for me. I’m still struggeling with such situations. And this is definitely too much cause it’s so far away from reality, cause life isn’t (only) about kitesurfing.
If you aren’t aware of this, you miss out so much joy and wonderful moments in life. I forgot the small things and I really forgot that there’s a life outside my kitesurf bubble. Even when others told me, I didn’t want to hear cause I was only thinking that they don’t want to understand how I feel. Haha, stupid me *faceplant*

(c) Helmut Fuchs/kitejoy

Yes, there’s one thing I have to admit: I’m really talented in standing in my own way! But everyone is responsible for their own feelings. And it was my fault that I felt like kitesurfing took over my whole life – it was only cause I let it happen this way.
Now I’m working on getting more aware that kitesurfing is and always will be a huge part of my life that gives me so much happiness, action, fun and all these things. But it’s not EVERYTHING. I will not die when there’s a day without wind even when I’m at the perfect spot, haha (I survived this yet many times!). I don’t want to make my happiness depending on if I can have a good session or not. I think when you’re aware of this you can enjoy your kitesurf life even better.

And next to kiting there’s so much more, so much everyday things that are beautiful, so much places, people and other activities that play an important role in my life. It’s not good to take all this for granted! My husband is one of the persons who has to bring me back to earth when I’m getting too fixated again. (Thank you for this hun! I think you’ll not loose this job in future, hehe – but I promise it will get better :))

Thank you Heli for bringing me back to reality if necessary! (c) Anja Fuchs/kitejoy

So guys, what about your thoughts concerning this topic, the kitesurf bubble and FOMO? Do you know these problems? I’m curious to hear about how you handle it!


  • If you’re not sure if you are a kitesurf addict or not then this article is for you!
  • If you want to add more fun to your kitesessions then you might find some useful tips here.
  • And if you want to read about how kitesurfing turned my life upside down then click here!
(c) Helmut Fuchs/kitejoy

 

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Feline
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Feline

Haha, this sounds so familiar! I’m also trying to create my life around kitesurfing. During work hours I even block all websites like windfinder etc. Just moved to the seaside and already planning my next sessions and trips;) but you’re right, once in awhile you just have to look around and realize that your life is amazing.

Mantas
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Great article! I’ve never tried this kind of surfing but would definitely like to! Perhaps in the near future!

Frank
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This is amazing, i love this kind of surfing but i haven’t tried it, i wish i could try it once in my life!

Chris
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Hehe reading your article flashed me back to my Windsurf career where I spent every minute on the water:) don’t worry Anja fomo fades with age…well at least a little bit;) the social aspect of (wind/kite-)surfing became much more important to me

Danny
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Danny

Great article ; I am also totally addicted ; happened to me earlier in life with windsurfing now 67 & been kiting for 4 yr ; my life totally revolves around the wind again ; if something interrupts my planned session I am not fit to live with or be around ;I thought I had control of it but a recent change of plans that involved a missed perfect day kiting left me very angry for days ; my motorcycle is collecting dust , luckily I’m 3/4 retired so can kite often , I will not plan events unless no… Read more »