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Recognize those tiny, little red badges in the top right corner of your apps? They might seem innocent but are actually incredible FOMO inducers.

FOMO or ‘fear of missing out’ is a term first coined back in 2004 and quickly found it’s way into conversation. A lot of us these days can really relate to this feeling - it’s symbolizes a collective fear in the 21st century where we can’t stop checking in on e-mail, WhatsApp of social media. Just to get rid of this feeling we might ‘miss out on something’.

Your phone is a true master at inducing this FOMO, and those red notifications badges are an incredible powerful trigger to pull and keep your attention longer on a screen. Honestly, we've all been there, swiping through our phone in one big effort to remove all those dots.

So why are they so effective?

1. The colour red is not a coincidence. It’s the colour that attracts your vision the most. On top of that, in our culture, the colour red is associated with urgency, immediacy.

2. Inside that red dot there’s always a number.: Your unread messages, emails or notifications.A constant reminder of all the things you might miss out on. And it’s this uncertainty that will spur you on to open the app.

3. Although removing all those red dots might give you that very short-term relieve of that fear, bottom line is that it'll make you more stressed and spend even more unwanted time on a screen. Not worth it.Now, we know what you’re thinking: “What if I actually miss out on something important and urgent”? Well, if that was the case it probably would have been a phone call, right?So trust us, let the badges & FOMO go. They’ll never make up for all that lost time & attention.

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